We recently wrote about snacks that keep you satisfied longer, but is there such a thing as food that makes you hungrier?
In the the same way low-sugar snacks, high protein snacks have a satiating effect because they keep your blood sugar low, high-carb sugary foods spike your blood sugar and can leave you even hungrier than before you started eating.
“Your body needs to control blood sugar carefully,” said dietitian Joy Post, of BistroMD. “If your body doesn’t have a normal control over blood sugar, you could experience ‘hunger attacks’ out of the blue. This is because certain foods make you hungrier after you eat them,” she said.
These “certain foods” are different kinds of simple carbohydrates, and they all mean the same thing to your body : sugar. When you consume simple carbs, your pancreas is forced into overdrive and produces too much insulin – a hormone that tells your body your blood sugar is way too low and you need to eat something quick. Thus, you become ravenously hungry.
Simple carbs aren’t the only food to ditch if you want to eat less. Lots of food found in the standard American diet is full of chemicals specifically designed make you reach for more. The more you eat, the more profits for the food companies.
Here at 7 dangerous foods that, no matter how much you eat, can make you feel like you’re running on an empty stomach:
White Pasta This goes for white bread too. White flour has been striped of its outer shell, the bran, which takes away all the fiber. Your body treats it like sugar, your insulin spikes, and you feel hungrier. A standard serving size of cooked pasta is just half a cup, but the typical restaurant serves four cups in a single entree. And chances are that delicious red sauce they pour all over your delicious white pasta is full of sugar, too.
Alcohol Studies show that three servings of alcohol can cut down your body’s level of leptin – a hormone that lets you know when you’re full – by a whopping 30%! Likewise, those salty snack cravings that hit during happy hour are really just a result of dehydration, which is easily confused for hunger, and loss of electrolytes. So instead of ordering another round to quench your thirst, order a tall glass of water instead.
Diet Soda There’s nothing about diet soda that will help you loose weight. In fact, the artificial sweeteners found in diet soda are not only full of hormone-alterning chemicals, but they actually trick your brain into expecting energy through sugar. When those calories aren’t delivered, you remain hungry. So you either eat something you don’t need to, or drink more diet soda.
Breakfast Bars Almost all of the breakfast bars that line grocery store shelves are high processed and sugary, regardless of how “healthy and natural” they claim to be on the package. While you can find some high-quality, low-sugar meal bars, it’s pretty rare. If you decide to go hunting, look for some with no high-fructose corn syrup, lots of seeds and/or nuts and with the least amount of ingredients possible.
Pastries and Baked Goods While these gooey treats smell wonderful coming out of the oven (and taste just as good), it’s especially important to skip pastries if you want to get healthy. Just like white pasta, white bread and anything else your body interprets as sugar, they boost you full of “fake” energy just before slamming you back down to earth wondering why you’re so hungry again.
High Fructose Corn Syrup Don’t be fooled by the name, high fructose corn syrup is really just sugar in it’s worst form. And it’s everywhere – even in food you wouldn’t expect like french fries, and just about every meal you order at the drive-thru for that matter. Similar to alcohol, high fructose corn syrup interferes with the body’s metabolism by slowing down the body’s secretion of leptin, the hormone that lets you know you when you’re full. So read labels carefully – fast food restaurants are required to supply you with nutritional info – and avoid it whenever possible.
Pizza Yes, it’s sad, but pizza is unhealthy no matter how you toss it. A combination of white flour dough (think sugar), hydrogenated oils, processed cheese and preservatives, pizza is a recipe for whacked-out hormones, high blood sugar and soon-to-follow eating binge. However, if you make your own pizza and sauce (canned sauce is packed with sugar), top it with lean meat, lots of veggies and just a dash of cheese, then you’ve got yourself a healthy pie.