One way to cut down on hunger pangs late in the day is to reduce the chances that they'll happen. (Besides, it's pretty hard to beat hunger when you're weak and confused by hunger.) The best way to do this is to eat a big breakfast. Studies show that eating a large breakfast decreases the amount of calories eaten later in the day, primarily because the extra calories consumed early on keep you fuller throughout the day and you don't end up getting as hungry.
What you eat for that big breakfast does count, though. Consume fiber-rich whole grains, such as oatmeal, which are slowly absorbed into the bloodstream. This keeps your blood sugar stable and the body feeling fuller for a longer period of time.
It's also effective to pair those kinds of foods with lean protein (egg whites, for example). Men not only have higher protein needs in general than women, but protein also stabilizes blood sugar and maintains fullness. In a 2007 study at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, for example, test subjects who ate only eggs for breakfast reported less feelings of hunger and consumed fewer calories throughout the day than did test subjects who ate just a low-fiber bagel for breakfast [source: Vander Wal]. If you're not a big fan of traditional breakfast foods, try eating any other foods that are packed with fiber (vegetables, berries, beans) and protein (energy bars, peanut butter).
- Brookhaven National Laboratory. "Control Your Hunger? Study Shows Men Can, Women Can't." Jan. 19, 2009. (Feb. 16, 2011) http://www.bnl.gov/bnlweb/pubaf/pr/PR_display.asp?prID=876
- Dranov, Paula. "10 Ways to Control Your Cravings." Reader's Digest. 2011. (February 16, 2011)http://www.rd.com/health/10-ways-to-control-your-cravings/
- Dakass, Brian. "Fighting Food Cravings." CBS News. March 7, 2005. (Feb.16, 2011) http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/03/07/earlyshow/health/main678481.shtml
- Karn, Katherine. "The Facts on Leptin: FAQ." WebMD. March 11, 2010. (March 3, 2011)http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/the-facts-on-leptin-faq
- Leong, Kristie. "How to Stop Hunger Cravings by Using Natural Foods." HealthMad. November 14, 2007. (February 16, 2011) http://healthmad.com/weight-loss/how-to-stop-hunger-cravings-by-using-natural-foods/
- Melanson, Kathleen J."Impact of chewing gum on appetite, meal intake, and mood under controlled conditions." Obesity 2009 conference. Washington, D.C. October 2009.
- Men's Health. "7 Reasons You're Still Hungry-Even After You Just Ate!" February 2011. (Feb. 27, 2011)http://www.menshealth.com/mhlists/curb-hunger/index.php
- Roizen, Michael F. and Oz, Mehmet C. "You on a Diet: The Owner's Manual for Waist Management." Simon and Schuster. 2010.
- Stensel, David. "Exercise, Appetite and Appetite-Regulating Hormones: Implications for Food Intake and Weight Control." Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism. Vol. 57, Suppl. 2, 36-42. 2010.
- Vander Wal, J.S. "Short-Term Effect of Eggs on Satiety in Overweight and Obese Subjects." Journal of the American College of Nutrition. Vol. 24, No. 6, 510-515. 2005.
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