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Old 06-16-2010, 08:26 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Morning Hunger

Does anyone else find themselves ravenously hungry in the mornings? I have to be at work at 7:30am, so I usually eat a cup of cereal with milk around 6:15am while I get ready to leave. I also sip cool water at home and in the car. By 8:30 - 9:00am, I'm feeling my stomach rumble and eyeing the clock. At 9:00am, I'll have a snack of some kind: cottage cheese, fruit, canned string beans, etc. Even before 10, I'm already feeling hungry again and I have to have at least one more snack before lunch at noon. The hunger is so distracting; it actually makes my stomach hurt!

I know snacks are important, but it's frustrating because I only have so many calories to work with throughout the day if I want to keep my calorie intake lower than my calorie expenditure. I've tried oatmeal instead of cereal, and it doesn't seem to be keeping me full any longer than cereal. How can I deal with this without blowing 80% of my calories before lunch?

Advice is appreciated!
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Old 06-16-2010, 08:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I just read something today (I think it was on Prevention magazine's website) about how not eating enough in the evening can lead to feeling too hungry in the morning. Do you have a snack after dinner?

My other thought is to add something with protein and/or maybe a little fat to your breakfasts; both of those have higher satiety than cereal, even oatmeal. It sounds like you are genuinely hungry as opposed to just stressed or bored and wanting to eat. Eggs, breakfast meats, peanut butter...something like that might help stave off the hunger a little better .
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Old 06-16-2010, 08:57 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I try not to snack after dinner, although sometimes I do have dessert (if I have room in the calorie budget). Sometimes there's just no time to snack between dinner, working out, showering and bed.

I've been sticking to cereal and oatmeal because I have so much trouble waking up on time in the mornings. But I think I'll take your suggestions and put in a little more effort into my breakfast. I hate trying to work when all I can think about is how hungry I am. Thank goodness there aren't any bowls of candy within my eyesight!

Thanks for the response!
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Old 06-16-2010, 09:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Another thought...if you are working out at night, that might also be part of the deal. I usually try to have a protein / carb snack after a workout (and I mainly get my exercise at night, too)...some Greek yogurt or lowfat cheese on wholegrain crackers, or, if no better options are available, some turkey and a piece of fruit or some nuts. Above all, do what works for you, but you may need to experiment a little bit to find the answer!

I sometimes use almonds for a mid-morning snack, too...they have both protein and fat in them and usually keep me till lunch. Good luck!
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Old 06-16-2010, 10:57 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I get up at 5 to get the kids ready and myself to work by 7:30. My usual work breakfast is a banana and a Kashi brand granola bar in the car. Kashi is higher in protein and lower in sugar than most granola bars. At work I have1-2 cups of coffee and some Greek yogurt (high protein) around 10:30. I really notice a difference hunger-wise if I don't have the coffee.
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Old 06-16-2010, 11:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I sooooo very have this same problem. Actually I think it's what caused me to be obese in the first place. When I started tracking my food intake, I realized that I ate breakfast like 3-4 times. So I was getting like 1,500 calories before LUNCH!!! I'm also not much of an evening snacker, although there are occasions... I've done exactly what cjohnson is recommending. I front load my day with tons of protein and some good fat at breakfast, and it helps a great deal with the hunger pangs (although not always). My breakfast goal is to get minimum of 500 calories, and 50-70 grams of protein. It sounds like a lot of protein, but it's not a problem if you have a tuna melt, or eggs or cottage cheese or maybe a serving of Greek yogurt, and a deviled egg on the side. I also put chocolate protein powder in my coffee. I would also second that after workout high protein snack business.

If you consistently wake up every morning with the feeling of starvation, you might actually be having symptoms of carbaholism. So you might take a look at what you are eating for dinner too, and cut back on the carbs in that meal as well. Did you have this problem before you started dieting or is this new?
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Old 06-17-2010, 12:24 AM   #7 (permalink)
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For what itís worth, I find I get ravenous in the morning when Iíve eaten a huge meal late the night before. As if my body is saying, ĎI worked all night to digest this foodí ... now Iím hungry. (I know that seems counterintuitive.) But, ... that doesnít sound like your issue, since you say you donít snack after dinner.

Iím in the camp that thinks you probably arenít eating enough breakfast or of a type to really fill you up. If your cereal is boxed, it probably doesnít have much fiber, and probably has added sugar. At the very least, find another kind that is high fiber and low in added sugar. Youíll also probably want to find something else to eat with that. I recommend fresh fruit because itís high in water and fiber (some more, some less). Fiber is very sustaining, because it slows down digestion and passing of food. Also, the water content helps make you feel full and satisfied. I target about 400 calories for breakfast; high fiber and high in fruits. I donít limit my daily intake of fruit but I focus on the higher fiber ones.

Good luck!

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Old 06-17-2010, 12:49 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I LOVE cereal, but I run into the same problem. I end up wicked hungry a few hours later. I've found that switching to something with more fiber or protein like egg whites does the trick for me.

I can now just eat a fiber one bar in the morning (if I'm in a hurry) and that will hold me off for a while.
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Old 06-17-2010, 01:19 AM   #9 (permalink)
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You should definitely try skipping dessert after dinner. It sounds like it's affecting your blood sugar. The carb high wears off while you're sleeping and you are waking up with low blood sugar. I also agree with getting more protein in your dinner and breakfast. Greek yogurt, almonds, whey protein and eggs are all great high-protein options for breakfast and mid-morning.
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Old 06-18-2010, 12:38 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I'm always hungry when I wake up! I could eat, go take a nap, and still wake up hungry... That being said, I realize that I'm a morning eater and tend to front-load my calories then, or at least choose more filling snacks. Just figure out your body and what makes you feel your best.

I'll concur with everyone saying to get some protein.

I personally get up around 5ish, workout 35-45 minutes and follow that with a protein shake about 6ish. (Mixing powder with some skim milk is super fast, you can even put it into a water bottle of some sort, shake and drink on your way to work.)

I alternate weeks where I eat at 6-8-10-12-2-4-6 (every 2 hrs) and then 6-9-12-3-6 (every 3 hrs). I do find those morning cravings can be fought off with a cup of coffee (minus the sugars, creams, etc.).

Hope the tips are helping you work it out!
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