How is it possible to lose weight without feeling hungry?
It really amazes me how pervasive the “no pain, no gain” message is. You would think that in this world of quick fixes and easy options that people would embrace a solution that doesn’t require the pain of a deprivation diet. But they don’t.
Because in the face of so many unrealistic weight loss claims, we have become more and more cynical. And given that most people struggle to lose weight, it just seems to vindicate the view that weight loss is difficult.
So why do I say that you can lose weight without feeling hungry?
Because, a lot of what you currently eat neither provides you with nutritional value nor extra enjoyment. There is a wide range of non-hungry and habitual eating that you do, that if you stopped doing, you would be taking in less calories but wouldn’t notice any difference to your hunger levels.
Three examples that immediately spring to mind are:
1. Eating slower. People who eat slower, eat less (and are thinner). When you eat slower, you enjoy the meal more and feel more satisfied after the meal. You have in effect received more enjoyment for fewer calories. If you consume fewer calories you will lose weight.
2. Stopping eating when full. Eating past the point of being full does not make you less hungry. It is unnecessary, habitual eating. Remove that kind of eating and you won’t affect your hunger levels but you will certainly be consuming fewer calories.
3. Controlling your food environment. Much of what we eat is not because we are hungry, but because it’s there. If it’s not there, you won’t eat it. Avoiding food in this way won’t make you more hungry, but it will result in fewer calories.
You may or may not see it now, but much of your current eating is unnecessary and habitual. Change the habit and you can eat less, without noticing any change in hunger.
Dr. Khandee Ahnaimugan is a medical doctor who provides a bespoke behavioural programme for weight loss. To book a comprehensive assessment at his Harley Street Clinic please email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone +44 (0) 20 3130 4770.