Could you describe your hunger sensations? What happens in your body? Do you get moody? Lose focus? Feel empty? Could you rate your hunger and fullness on a scale?
One of the most valuable exercises I do with clients is connect them to their own hunger and fullness.
I love this exercise as it allows for a connection to the unique sensations and signals that your body is sending you. And cultivating these is part of becoming a more Intuitive Eater.
1. Before eating simply check in and ask yourself where you’re at with your hunger level?
2. Whilst eating, do you notice that hunger changing or going away?
3. After eating, check in and see how you’d rate your fullness?
The below scale is a huge help in this process where 0 = over-hungry and 10 = over-full.
✨0 - 2 OVER HUNGRY which can feel like intense feelings of hunger, quite irritable and anxious
✨3 - 7 NORMAL EATING RANGE which ranges from comfortable hunger in the lower numbers where you’re ready to eat and up to comfortable fullness where you feel satisfied and content
✨8 - 10 OVER FULL which can feel unpleasant, uncomfortable and maybe painful at the upper end of the range
If you’ve been dieting for some time, and perhaps have “good” and “bad” foods, you might find yourself frequently eating at a 0 or 1 rating and this is completely understandable. It’s essentially when we’ve ignored our hunger cues for far too long and the hunger is unbearable.
This state of over-hunger is a completely normal biological response to restriction. In short the body says, you don't feed me and I'll get louder.
It also means we’re more likely when eating at this level, to over-eat.
And over time, this is how we can gain weight. The same weight those diets telling you not to eat, are doing a terrible job at keeping off.
Does this sound familiar?
Staying connected to your hunger and fullness can be challenging initially; as any new skill is; though can soon become an automatic and welcome ally in feeling comfortable and empowered around food.
Save this blog post and come back to it as much as you need to.
See if you notice any patterns or trends in your eating?
Check out the podcast episode we recorded about honouring hunger below.
And if you’d like to dive further into this, you can check out my Live More, Obsess Less online program.
This is exactly the type of work you do with me guiding you step-by-step. You can expect to receive more insight into the hunger and fullness rating system, encouragement and ideas around how to notice trends and what is helpful to pay attention to. And that's just one exercise! Because this exercise isn't Intuitive Eating alone. It's however a key insight to cultivate. I'm immensely proud at what I've created with my program and would love for you to check it out.
You can also book in with me for a 1:1 consultation.
Below you'll find two episodes of my podcast that speak directly to hunger and fullness signals in your body.