Did you know that eating the wrong thing can actually make you feel hungrier in the long run? You might be surprised that some foods that you consider ”healthy” are actually hurting your diet by leaving you unsatisfied and hungry. Don’t get stuck eating meals that sabotage your waistline and fail to curb your appetite. Expert registered dietitian Brigitte Zeitlin unmasks five common foods and snacks that actually make you hungry. Read on to find out what foods to eat instead so you’re full and recharged when you’re done.
5 Foods That Make You Hungrier:
These and other salty snacks are one of the many foods that make you hungrier by tricking your body into thinking it’s hungry when it’s not. How? A high sodium content (170 grams per serving for these snacks) can dehydrate you and confuse your body into thinking it is hungry when it’s actually thirsty. These snacks are also low in protein and fiber, two of the things our body needs to feel full.
Instead: Switch these packaged salty snacks out for homemade versions. Consider baked kale chips or maybe butternut squash fries. Both of these options can satisfy a salt craving, and they’re high in fiber so your body will feel satisfied.
Sushi, rice and goodness wrapped in seaweed, can backfire on you! Although it’s often considered a healthy option, it has its drawbacks as one of the many foods that make you hungry. The rolls can be full of white rice (which has no fiber), and added soy sauce is very high in sodium. (That sodium can cause the dehydration and thirst/hunger confusion again.) Despite its tiny size, sushi can be packed full of calories. Try not to choose items like tempura (which means fried) or spicy (which means high-fat mayo) because these sushi variations can add on calories, and still leave you hungry.
Instead: Start with a fiber-rich salad or a filling miso soup. Add in some sashimi pieces, and if you want a roll, see if it can be made with brown rice and low-sodium soy sauce. And go easy on the sake!
Cereal can be a double-whammy when it comes to being hungry. Many varieties are low in fiber and high in sugar, which won’t tide you over until lunch. Swap out cereal for fiber-rich, unsweetened, hot oatmeal made with milk or soy milk for extra protein. Add a half cup of berries for even more fiber or a tablespoon of nuts for a crunch.
Instead: If ditching cold cereal is out of the question, at least add a half cup of cereal to 6 ounces of plain Greek yogurt. And don’t forget that half cup of berries!
4. Snack Bars
These on-the-go snacks can simultaneously leave you hungry and unsatisfied, which can quickly unravel your health goals. Many of the bars out there contain sugar substitutes that trigger your body’s taste and reward system, but there is no actual “reward” since the substitute is artificial flavoring. This can leave you in a very un-satiated state. You know what we mean. (#hangry).
Instead: Look for bars that have whole-foods listed as the top of the ingredient list. Also, aim for a bar with at least 3 grams of fiber to avoid the pitfall of foods that make you hungrier.
It doesn’t matter if it says, “No sugar added,” or “Cold pressed.” Juice always contains a concentrated amount of sugar. Just one glass of juice will raise your blood sugar level quickly, which will lead to an inevitable crash later on, and you’ll be famished. Instead of juice, eat the whole fruit (and get some added fiber from the skin). And even better is to pair the fruit with a protein, like a piece of string cheese or a tablespoon of nut butter. Protein is satisfying and can stave off the desire to eat, unlike other foods that make you hungry in the long run.
Instead: If juice is a must-have, pour a dash of it into some club soda to satisfy the craving while avoiding the highs and lows of too much sugar.
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