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Sometimes You Are Not Really Hungry, You Are Simply Thirsty

Sometimes You Are Not Really Hungry, You Are Simply Thirsty

Is it hunger or is it thirst you’re experiencing? Well, it is not uncommon to find someone confusing the two. In fact, you will find many people rushing to grab something at a food joint rather than a bottle of water.

Confusing thirst for hunger has become so common that achieving the 8-glass per day rule is no longer observed. As a result, you will find yourself consuming more food, thus possibly leading to an unhealthy diet.

Understanding Hunger and Thirst

It should be understood how the two are perceived by the brain, bearing in mind that all bodily desires are automatically controlled by the brain. The complicated thing is that the part of the brain that deals with hunger and thirst feelings is the same.

With the same part interpreting both signals, it becomes confusing to offer the perfect solution. Studies reveal that there is no conclusive number of meals [1]that people need to consume in a day, further blurring the lines between pangs of hunger and thirst.

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When it has been over that, the brain starts to interpret signals due to food insufficiency and energy levels.

A hungry person will show some signs including:

  • Feeling weak
  • Being irritable
  • Feeling empty
  • Growling or rumbling stomach

Something you should not ignore is that feelings of true hunger come gradually, and not suddenly.

Are You Really Thirsty or Not?

Being thirsty, as stated earlier, shares the same signals with hunger, thus confusing your brain between the two. You should, however, be keen to note the signs of thirst and consume an adequate amount of water each day.

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Ideally, you are advised to drink eight glasses of water each day in order to give your body its required level of hydration. However, daily activities, such as exercising, or even sickness, can cause dehydration, making it necessary to drink even more water. However, be careful not to mistake this feeling for hunger.

Here are some frequent signs of thirst that you may mistake for hunger:

  • Dryness
  • Sluggishness
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Dry skin
  • Dry mouth

Ensure that you have access to water at all times of the day to avoid dehydration. Drink any time, even if you don’t feel thirsty. When your stomach feels empty, even after drinking water, then your are surely hungry.

Things to Do When You Feel Hungry

Feeling hungry is a top, unwanted issue among all people. It makes you feel moody and makes you feel weak. What you do when hunger comes knocking depends on so many things.

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For you to eat, you have to be close to a source of food. Even with all the food available, you need to consider your health and current fitness programs [2]. If you have been trying to lose weight, this is your chance to stick to it, but how? Here are some of the things you should consider when hungry.

Grab a Juicy Fruit

fruit-bowl-1600023_1280

    Instead of drinking juice, which is not normally healthy, grab a fruit. Eating fruits, like mangoes and apples, is not only healthy, but also a good way to alleviate hunger. Fruits will give your body the required energy and nutrients. Also, the natural sugars contained in fruits help you get through the day. By availing glycogen into your liver in the form of fructose extracted from fruits, hunger will soon dissipate.

    Eat Some Fibrous Food

    There are so many fibrous foods you can grab that will not negatively affect your fitness plan. Such foods are rich in water and fill up the stomach, creating a satisfaction feeling in the brain. The good thing about these foods is that they are fewer in calories and are thus, perfect for weight loss programs.

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    Eat Protein-Rich Foods

    If you are feeling hungry, the obvious option is just to eat. However, have you ever wondered why eating meat makes you feel more filled compared to other food?

    For a long time now, proteins have proven to be the best at relieving hunger [3] when compared to fats and carbohydrates. Therefore, you should grab milk, yogurt, meat, chicken, or even fish to alleviate your hunger.

    Finally, whether you are on a diet plan or not, be sure to leave space in your stomach to help regulate your food intake. It is important not to mistake thirst and hunger as it may affect your dietary system. Always drink water first. If the feeling of hunger persists, then make it a must to grab some food.

    If you like this article, then please share this post on social media to help educate your friends and followers about the distinction between the two.

    Reference

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    Last Updated on October 16, 2018

    The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

    The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

    It’s well past midnight and you’ve got to get up in less than six hours. You toss and turn all night. Before you know it, another hour passes by and you start panicking.

    If I don’t get to sleep in the next 30 minutes, I’m going to be exhausted tomorrow!”

    One thing is for sure, you’re not alone. Over 70M+ Americans have stated that they don’t get the proper sleep they need at night.[1] So what could possibly be causing this insomnia epidemic?

    Throughout my entrepreneurial journey of building my language learning company, I have experimented and researched dozens of best sleep practices. Some have flopped but a few have dramatically improved the quality of my life and work.

    In this article, I’ll look into the reason why you’re sleep deprived and how to sleep through the night tonight.

    Why you can’t sleep through the night

    The first step to improving anything is getting to the bottom of the root problem. Different studies have shown the reasons why most people cannot sleep well at night.[2] Here are the main ones that the average person faces:

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    Stress

    If you’ve ever stayed up at night worrying about something, know that it’s a major sleep inhibitor. When you’re feeling stress, your mind and body becomes more activated, making it incredibly difficult to fall asleep. Even when you do manage to sleep, it won’t be deep enough to help you feel rested the next day.

    Exposure to blue light before sleep time

    We’re exposed to harmful blue light on a daily basis through the use of our digital screens. If you’ve never heard of blue light, it’s part of the visible light spectrum that suppresses melatonin, our sleep hormones. Other harmful effects include digital eye strains and macular cellular damage.

    While daytime exposure to blue light is not very harmful, night time exposure tricks our brain into thinking it’s daytime. By keeping your brain alert and suppressing melatonin, your mind is unable to shut down and relax before bedtime.

    Eating close to bedtime

    Eating too late can actually be an issue for many people, especially those who are older than 40. The reason is, eating before laying down increases the chances of Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), in which stomach acid backflows into the esophagus.

    Another reason not to eat too late is sleep quality. Even if you manage to sleep right after eating, it’s likely that you’ll wake up tired. Instead of letting your body rest during sleep, it has to digest the food that was entered before bedtime.

    Rule of thumb: eat 3-4 hours before bedtime.

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    Medical conditions

    In some cases, it could be medical conditions that cause your sleep problems. If you can’t relate yourself to the above reasons or any of these common sleep problem causes, you should visit the doctor.

    The vicious sleep cycle

    The biggest danger to repeating the bad habits mentioned above is the negative cycle that it can take you through. A bad night’s sleep can affect not only your energy but your willpower and decision making skills.

    Here’s an example of a bad sleep pattern:

    You get a bad night’s sleep
    –> You feel tired and stressful throughout the day.
    –> You compensate it with unhealthy habits (for example junk food, skipping exercises, watching Netflix etc.)
    –> You can’t sleep well (again) the next night.

      You can imagine what could happen if this cycle repeats over a longer period of time.

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      How to sleep better (throughout the night)

      To help you break the vicious cycle and stop waking up in the middle of the night, I’ll explain to you a list of actionable steps to solve your trouble staying asleep.

      1. Take control over the last 90 minutes of your night

      What you do (or don’t do) before bedtime have significant impact on the quality of your sleep. Many times, it can be the difference between staying up until 4am and sleeping like a baby.

      Here are a few suggestions:

      • Go from light to dark – Darkness stimulates production of the sleep hormone melatonin. Turn off unused light around the house, and think about investing into warm light that you can use in the bedroom before bedtime.
      • Avoid screens (or wear blue light blocking glasses) – Keep the bedroom a technology-free zone as the light from electronic devices can disturb your sleep. If you need to work, wear blue light blocking glasses (also known as computer glasses) throughout or before you sleep to prevent sleep disruption.
      • Find an activity that helps you to wind down  This could be anything that calms you down, and reduces thinking (especially unnecessary stress). Fir example, listening to soothing/good feel music, taking a hot bath, reading or meditating.
      • Keep any electronics you have on the other side of the room or outside the room – One of the most harmful things that can disrupt your sleep is the notifications you get from your smartphones. The simplest way to avoid this is to keep it away from you.
      • Create a bedtime routine – A night routine is a couple of things you do prior to going to bed. By doing these things every night, you’ll have a more restful and high-quality sleep. Learn how to pick up a night routine here: The Ultimate Night Routine Guide to Sleep Better and Wake Up Productive

      2. Eat the right nutrients (and avoid the wrong ones)

      What you eat (not just when we eat) plays a critical role in your sleep quality. If you’re ever in doubt of what to eat to improve your sleep, take the following into consideration:

      • Kiwi – This green fruit may be the ultimate pre-bed snack. When volunteers ate two kiwis an hour before hitting the hay, they slept almost a full extra hour. Kiwis are full of vitamins C and E, serotonin and folate—all of which may help you snooze.
      • Soy foods – Foods made with soy such as tofu, miso and edamame, are rich in isoflavones. These compounds increase the production of serotonin, a brain chemical that influences the body’s sleep-wake cycle.
      • Fiber-rich foods – Eating more fiber could be key for better sleep. Eating fiber was associated with more restorative slow-wave sleep—the more you eat, the better you sleep—per a study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. Fiber prevents blood sugar surges that may lower melatonin. Get a fiber boost from beans, artichokes, bran cereal and quinoa.
      • Salmon – Most fish, especially salmon, halibut and tuna boost vitamin B6, which is needed to make melatonin— a sleep-inducing hormone triggered by darkness.

      3. Adjust your sleep temperature

      Once you’ve gone through the first 2 recommendations, the last step to experiment with is temperature. According to Sleep.org, the ideal temperature for sleep is 60-67 Farenheit. This may be cooler than what most people are used to, but keep in mind that our body temperature changes once we fall asleep.

      Rule of thumb: sleeping in cooler temperature is better for sleep quality than warmer temperature.

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      Find out how to maintain the optimal temperature to sleep better here: How to Sleep Faster with the Best Temperature

      Sleep better form now on

      Congrats on making it to the end of this guide on sleep. If you’re serious about taking the necessary steps in improving your sleep, remember to take it one step at a time.

      I recommend trying just one of the steps mentioned such as taking a hot bath, blocking out blue light at night, or sleeping in cooler temperature. From there, see how it impacts your sleep quality and you can keep doing what works, and throw away what doesn’t.

      As long as you follow these steps cautiously and diligently, I know you’ll see improved results in your sleep!

      Featured photo credit: pixabay via pixabay.com

      Reference

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