View Full Version : Hungry
08-11-2007, 04:50 PM
I like to stay a little hungry. When I first went raw I didn't like even a little bit of hunger and I would stuff the food in until the feeling went away. As I progressed in my raw journey I realized that a little hunger was a good thing. Hungry means my body is ready, willing, and able to do a good job with the fresh raw natural foods I am giving it. Has anyone else learned to appreciate the benefits of a little hunger ?
Yes, I have, just since... Hmmm, a few weeks maybe, or even shorter.
Just lately. And it just happened kind of spontaneously.
Not a real 'I'm going to faint' hunger or feeling starved (when that happens, I know I've passed that good healthy point and didn't pay attention to my body because I was too busy with other stuff), but a good solid and clean burn, knowing that you're body is ready.
It's wonderful to eat like this, the food tastes a million times better and indeed, I just feel that my body really assimilates the things I eat.
Karen Knowler (raw food coach from the UK), wrote an article about it a while ago, I will look it up.
Article by Karen Knowler:
Go For "The Clean Burn"!
It is not uncommon for me to hear people say, "I do feel better on raw food, but I don't feel quite as amazing as I expected to feel. Where is all this energy I'm supposed to have?"
There can, of course, be a multitude of reasons for not feeling as good as you could, and way more than we can go into in one article, but today I'm going to discuss one of the most common: Over- eating.
Whether we eat cooked foods or raw - or a mixture of both, eating more food than we need quite simply overtaxes the body. Digestion takes more energy than any other activity we do - in fact sometimes it can even exhaust us completely (think Christmas Dinner, and your half-comatose relatives asleep in the chair!). It's incredible that food can make or break our energy in this way, but it really does, and sometimes this can be subtly undermining (which all adds up) and other times blatantly obvious.
When we eat raw foods, generally speaking, our digestive demands lessen. Our foods are more simple, we are eating enzymes rather than needing to find them from our existing stores, and, unless our diet is fat-dense (i.e. eating lots of nuts and seeds) then typically our load is much lighter and much faster to transit through than the average diet.
It is estimated that one in three people in the doctor's waiting room is there for a colon-related issue. A shocking statistic don't you think? But hardly surprising when we consider what passes for "food" today and what extremes some people will go to in terms of diversity, quantity and frequency. Of course, most people in this bracket don't necessarily eat in a way we could consider to be healthy, but there's so much more to it than just what we eat...
So how is it that some people on raw foods don't get the amazing energy that myself or others rave about? Especially if you are eating low-fat?
As far as I can see, a lot of it comes down to making sure that when you eat you are genuinely hungry.
My own research over hundreds of clients shows that at least 95% of people I survey either do not know what true hunger feels like and/or do not wait until they are hungry to eat.
What this means is this:
If you are eating when you're not hungry then you are essentially putting in more food than your body needs. When this is the case, your body will use its precious energy to digest (or "burn" as I like to call it) your food rather than have the energy available to use for something more productive (like feeling good!).
One of my greatest lessons on my own food journey has been to wait until I am truly hungry before I eat. This doesn't, by the way, mean that I wait until I feel "starving", just that I know that even if a plain bowl of lettuce leaves was placed in front of me, then I would eat them and genuinely enjoy them because I am that ready to consume.
Why this example?
Because of all the things that we can eat on this planet, green leaves are the least addictive foods of all, and the among the most nutritious for us... and if we feel drawn to eating them un-dressed and unaccompanied then that's a great sign that we really are hungry - because as you know our taste buds and bodies can appear so fickle and easily persuaded!
It took me many years to get to the point where I only when hungry, but I have to say it really is one of the most enjoyable aspects of the way I eat/ live my life. There is nothing more gratifying than going to eat a meal that you are really and truly ready for. I'm sure I love my food ten times more because of this. It tastes and feels so much better! In fact, I really do find that now if someone places food in front of me or offers me something - even if it's just a single piece of fruit - if I'm not hungry I get very strong signals from my body not to eat it and I find myself actually physically repulsed by it. Now that's incredible!
Considering my extensive junk food background, I really do believe that if I can reach this place then anyone can, although I appreciate we all have different issues to overcome in order to get to here.
I call this place of genuine hunger the place of "The Clean Burn". That's because I know that when I'm in this place I feel as if whatever I eat is really enjoyed from the moment I start preparing it to the moment it starts its journey down my throat and into my stomach. From this moment on I feel as if the food is being digested and utilised immediately. No hanging around waiting for breakfast to pass through or "falling" on top of last night's supper and - wait for it - fermenting and rotting. Eugh! It feels as if it is being welcomed with open arms and that my entire body is ready for it and loving it. Now that's worth waiting for!
It's rather ironic that throughout our entire childhood and typically, adulthood, we are never taught how to eat properly. Whether we use a knife and fork from an early age seems to be of more importance than whether we are actually ready to eat! It's no wonder we have the weight issues that we do - a lean body is often a clean body, and a clean body is one that really knows and experiences the feeling of The Clean Burn on a regular basis.
As I sit here writing this article it is 12:33pm. Today so far all I have consumed is one pint of watermelon juice, which I had as soon as I felt some hunger around about 10:00am. I am just starting to get that Clean Burn feeling now, but I know I'm not quite there yet, so I will wait a little longer before I go downstairs to eat. There is an art in detecting what stage you're at, and after years of practice and awareness I know now that although what I'm feeling right now would be considered "really hungry" by some people, to me it is a sign that, if I were away from home, I should start looking for food in order to secure it, but if I already have it to not yet eat it as the Clean Burn is not yet fully upon me!
Are these the words of a closet anorexic? No, I can assure you they're not! I am most definitely not into deprivation at any price, and least of all when it comes to food! No, what I describe here is a way of feeling and being around food that feels quite the opposite to deprivation - if I were to eat now before I got fully hungry and could fully appreciate every ounce of my meal - now THAT would feel like deprivation.
On that note I'm going to ask that you really pay attention to your hunger signals over the next few days and see how far you can go with this. This means ignoring the clock, getting all the "shoulds" out of your head about what, when and how you "should" be eating, and really paying attention to the different degrees of hunger as they unfurl. And yes, of course, waiting until you are FULLY hungry before you begin.
Yes, I know this may sound or feel like advanced stuff and even a little scary for some people, but if you can start to put even a little of this into practice in your daily life then I'd be very surprised if you didn't start to lose any excess weight you have, gain a lot more energy overall and generally start falling in love with your food - and your body - even more than you ever thought possible.
Oh yes, and did I mention that your food bills may very well go down?!
Enjoy the pursuit of The Clean Burn, a few more minutes wait for your food is a VERY small price to pay for such huge and multifaceted rewards, believe me!
© 2007 Karen Knowler
Karen Knowler, The Raw Food Coach publishes "Successfully Raw" - a free weekly eZine for raw food lovers everywhere. If you're ready to look good, feel great and create a raw life you love get your FREE tips, tools and recipes now at www.TheRawFoodCoach.com.
Nurse in the Raw
08-11-2007, 05:35 PM
I read this the other day on her website.....one day I will get there but right now I am just hungry.
08-11-2007, 06:07 PM
I get low blood sugar crashes too much with even just a little hunger: dizziness, low blood pressure, headaches, ANGER just to name a few. I cant appreciate that. Mayber as I get further in my journey, this will disappear.
08-11-2007, 06:21 PM
As far as I can see, a lot of it comes down to making sure that when you eat you are genuinely hungry.
I became aware of this benefit through my juicing. I get up in the morning and make juice for as long as it feels right and sometimes that can an hour or several hours. At first I was making the juices on a timetable and then I started to experiment with waiting until my body spoke to me with a slight hunger signal. The more I paid attention to my body's signal the better I have been feeling and the better this raw foods experience works for me. When I started waiting for the return of hunger before eating it was like I found the gas pedal (car analogy). Other things I have found that connect to the gas pedal are food combining and placing my foods in an order of eating so that the easy to digest foods are early in the day and the more solid foods are later in the day. Also I have found that small meals frequently works well (grazing). This raw foods journey just keeps getting better. Pedal to the metal. :)
08-25-2007, 10:50 AM
I have been on the RAWgust now for 25 days and for the last couple of days when I wake up I have no hunger for a couple of hours. This is a change for me in that usually I experience hunger in the morning as soon as my feet hit the floor. I suppose this is part of detox or something ?
08-25-2007, 11:58 AM
thats how i am too. i usually either don't eat until lunch time or i just have a piece of fruit for breakfast.
08-25-2007, 12:03 PM
I usually need to eat within 20 minutes of getting up. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night hungry. I try to drink a glass of water first though and not put food on a dry stomach.
08-25-2007, 02:04 PM
http://i149.photobucket.com/albums/s43/FireStar_830/laugh.gif .... :eek: Oh... you were serious??... ummmm.... http://i149.photobucket.com/albums/s43/FireStar_830/blush-4.gif ... well... I'm trying to appreciate it ... I'm workin on it! I can say that I no longer panick when I am hungry. (and that's a good thing!) I used to go into an absolute panic when I felt any hunger - like maybe I would die if I didn't get to eat... well... after 51 years I figure if I'm still here -- most likely a little hunger won't kill me! ;) !!
08-25-2007, 02:18 PM
this was an awesome article!
i am on day 4 and am definitely starting to understand. i find that i am truly "full" from raw foods, a far different and better feeling full than on cooked foods. i have been a vegan for over a year so i'm no stranger to healthy eating, but i find myself eating dramatically less when i eat raw because i feel so much more in tune with my body and what it truly wants.
i love it!
08-25-2007, 02:27 PM
I am about to start my journey into raw food eating. I really need to lose weight so I can have a knee surgery. Any advice on the best way to start? I have, I believe a very simple start but I want this to work and want to stay very dedicated.
08-25-2007, 02:43 PM
I am about to start my journey into raw food eating. I really need to lose weight so I can have a knee surgery. Any advice on the best way to start? I have, I believe a very simple start but I want this to work and want to stay very dedicated.I like to listen to my body's signals to make decissions by. Listening to your body is kinda like driving your car. Every so often there is a signal or sign to help you navigate safely. Listening to your body is paying attention to what your body has to say. The hunger signal can be used to help you in feeding your body. When the body posts a SLIGHT HUNGER SIGNAL its ready willing and able to do a good job on the food you give it. Listening to the body's signals has been a great help to me so far in my raw food journey and I intend to keep on listening.
08-25-2007, 07:11 PM
overall, i've noticed that i'm more easily satisfied with less food...And i'm not hungry in the morning as i wake up!!
but the last couple of days i just want to eat eat eat :eek: well, i'm home a lot so boredom leads to food thoughts... AND it's almost that special time of the month, so i try to blame THAT on my "appetite"!!! :(
08-26-2007, 08:25 AM
I'm just starting to try this and I think it's working. I've only done it 3 days though. I'm eating much less. Waiting until I feel some growling and emptiness in my stomach and only eating a small meal. I actually feel full now. :rolleyes:
08-26-2007, 09:34 AM
Yes, I like it. I like the light feeling. But, if I go too long (like overnight to late morning) without food, sometimes the 'hunger' signals go away, then I may get light headed. So, I have to be careful about that. :)
08-26-2007, 10:11 AM
I'm eating much less. Waiting until I feel some growling and emptiness in my stomach and only eating a small meal. I actually feel full now.I have been working on incorporating this idea for the RAWgust time and I have had some success with it so far but I still find myself eating pre-emptively, I guess it takes time to change. I am getting better at waiting for my body's slight hunger signal rather then eating for emotional support or because I walked into the kitchen. Just recently I had to tighten my pants up another notch to keep them up. This is the second notch I have moved in the RAWgust so I also have experienced what you said about your eating less, so have I. I am not making the effort to listen to my body's feeding signals to lose weight or eat less but rather because it makes sense to me on two fronts: 1) BETTER DIGESTION, its only logical that the body is going to digest better if its allowed to finish the job of digesting one meal before it starts digesting the next. 2) IMPROVED ENERGY, by not having to expend more energy digesting excess food which is a very energy expensive process the body should have more energy reserves. That said, I also appreciate the two belt notch moves that have occurred during RAWgust and consuming less food is good too. When consuming less food I think it more important then ever to make sure that the food given is of good quality that the body can use and not just empty calories. My conclusion at this time is that I am going to continue to tune into my body's signals and see if I can put my body into control of my eating rather then other factors like emotions, boredom, habit, etc.
08-26-2007, 10:16 AM
Yes, I like it. I like the light feeling. But, if I go too long (like overnight to late morning) without food, sometimes the 'hunger' signals go away, then I may get light headed. So, I have to be careful about that. :)I have noticed that also. If I ignore that first slight hunger signal then it tends to go away for awhile and when it comes back it comes back with a vengence which makes it harder to control. I am trying to catch it just as the first signal occures. After sleeping that is the first hunger signal of the day.
This has made me think more about the way the human body works. For example, if we wait to eat until we are hungry, do we then become hungry less often? If so, is it just that we are listening better to our bodies, or is it because our bodies are also becoming more efficient.
I bet this is a big piece of the puzzle regarding yo-yo dieting and how people cause themselves to gain more weight in the end. Perhaps our bodies become so efficient when we eat less (either for the sake of starvation for weight control or for good health) that eating more again afterwards is excess to an efficient body.
Just some food for thought.
After reading this earlier today, I walked into the kitchen. I usually open the cabinet full of nuts and eat a handful when I'm there, just because of habit maybe? This time, I asked myself, "Am I hungry?" The answer was no, so I didn't have any. I really would like to start listening more to my body's signals. I think it will help me accomplish all of those health goals that seem to be just out of reach.
Thanks for posting this EZ Rider!
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