Do you feel that your stomach is a dark and bottomless bag demanding more and more food? Do you feel that your stomach is a dark and bottomless bag demanding more and more food? Do you feel that you are overpowered by an unending demand of eating all the time, as if your appetite has a mind of its own, which isn’t convinced by your never ending supplies? Well, you’re not alone in this battle against hunger pangs. There are many who are defeated by their uncontrolled desire to eat, but the good news is that, there are sure shot ways through which you can control your hunger pangs, and curb those unwanted signals that urge you to stuff your face with extra calories and junk.

The problem with an inordinate craving to eat, is that it is hard (even sometimes impossible) to make healthy choices on your plate.

Here we present to you a nutritionist’s view to help you stave off the hunger pangs with natural and science based ways.

Breakfast is the champion of the day: Eating the right kind of food at the start of the day can not only help you in keeping your hunger pangs at bay, but also keep you vitally nourished throughout the course of the day. Oats, eggs, fruits and whole grain bread are some of the healthy options that contain a good amount of fiber and nutrients. Shape and size your breakfast in such a way that it stays as the king of all your meals.

Enough Protein: Ample protein in your diet is a must. Proteins are the building blocks of the body, and a high protein intake may help to prevent muscle loss along with weight loss and dress your appetite in moderation. They also help you in nursing your energy and helping you feel alert. Adding nuts, beans and seafood are also good sources of protein that keep you feeling full for long, and boost your brain energy and overall mood.

Fibre-rich food: A high fibre intake helps increase the body’s metabolism. Fibre-rich whole grains are also great in reducing hunger pangs and keep you feeling full. In fact, there are review reports which say that adding beans, peas, chickpeas and lentils that are rich in fibre in your meal can increase feelings of fullness by 31 per cent.

Smaller plates: Reducing the size of your tableware with respect to the food in them can naturally trim your meal portions. Eating food in small plates is a great way to trick your mind into thinking that you’re full. Besides this, you don’t overeat with a smaller plate or bowl.

Get moving: ‘Exercise demands more food’, is a false fact. Instead, it actually pulls down your appetite. It reduces hunger hormone levels in the body, along with increasing the feeling of fullness. There is definite research that shows that aerobic and resistance exercise are effective at influencing the hunger hormone levels to the lower side and also minimizes the size of a meal eaten after exercise. Under normal conditions, the brain authorizes whether you are hungry or not. But eating when involved in some other activities like watching T.V. puts this authorisation in difficulty, making you eat beyond what is required. Drinking water before meals can decrease your urge to eat more. At the end of the day, if you wish to lose weight or at least keep the weight off, taming your hunger is extremely important.

(The writer is the founder and chief dietician, Nmami Life)