HCG Diet, Leptin and the Hunger Scale
The Role that Leptin plays on Hunger
Leptin is a hormone that was discovered in 1994 and plays a role on hunger and metabolism. When leptin levels are low the result is the feeling of hunger. When we eat food, the food will stimulate the leptin levels to rise which then creates a feeling of sataity or fullness. This is a discussion we have with our HCG Diet patients. I strongly feel that understanding leptin’s role in our bodies helps to understand how fat metabolism and the HCG Diet protocol works.
Rule of Thumb:
If you do not feel hungry, this means that your leptin levels are up. In this place, your body can use your own fat stores for energy. When you feel hungry, this means leptin levels are lower and your body is asking for fuel from food. This is assuming you have not developed leptin resistance which a lot of people do develop over time. This is for a later discussion.
The Hunger Scale and Eating for Weight Loss
Do you only eat when you are experiencing actual HUNGER?
Do you ever eat when you are FULL?
The hunger scale is a way to learn about our eating patterns and to really notice when we eat MINDLESSLY — this happens out of emotion, boredom, comfort, etc. This is the pattern that needs to change in order to make weight loss long term.
Many of us are afraid of hunger and rarely experience the sensation. When you have that little sense of hunger in your belly, this is the perfect time to eat on a hormonal level. As you eat, notice when you feel full. This means leptin levels are elevated and it is a nice time to stop eating.
It is important to realize that we have 2 stomachs … a physiological stomach and a psychological stomach. When you want to eat, please ask yourself if you are physiologically hungry and if so … have a nice healthy bite and stop eating when you are full.
The HCG Diet 1-5 Hunger Scale
1 on the Hunger Scale
You are feeling pretty satisfied in your body. There is not a drive to eat.
2 on the Hunger Scale
Hunger signals have just started to show up but there is no urgency. Now is the time when it is important to have a plan of when you will be eating. Although there is no urgency to eat right now hunger can creep up and intensify over 15-20 minutes. The more prepared you are the better. If you do not have something healthy ready in the next 10-15 minutes your chances of eating “junk food” are much higher.
3 on the Hunger Scale
At this point, you are HUNGRY. Your body is wanting food. You will most likely be wanting to eat “junk food” if nothing healthy is readily available.
4 on the Hunger Scale
Now, you are quite irritable and maybe even dizzy. All you care about is getting any kind of food into your stomach to relieve this uncomfortable state. In this state of mind, you also crave food in large amounts even though just a small amount will feel satisying.
5 on the Hunger Scale
If you wait this long to eat, your hunger may actually disappear. Your mind may feel foggy and your energy level quite low. A headache may arise due to big fluctuations in blood sugar. This is not a good state to be in physically, mentally or metabolically.
We ask our HCG Diet patients as well as our medically supervised diet patients to be aware of the hunger scale. Ideally, it is best to eat when your hunger is at a 2.5 on the Hunger scale and to stop eating when you are a 1 on the Hunger Scale.
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