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7 Ways to Curb Your Appetite

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  • We’ve all heard the terms healthy eating and portion control, but how do you implement them into your daily life? Do these concepts work? And what’s the difference between the two of them? Although they seem to be similar, they do have notable differences that can help you figure out which works best to curb your appetite. Here are seven ways to curb your appetite no matter what size or shape you are!

1. Drink Water

  • When you’re trying to lose weight, drinking enough water is crucial. Drinking too little water can disrupt your metabolism and make it hard for your body to absorb nutrients from food. A good rule of thumb is to drink one 8-ounce glass of water for every 25 pounds that you weigh. If you find yourself becoming dehydrated, add another glass or two at each meal; better yet, carry a BPA-free reusable bottle with you everywhere so that you stay on top of it. It might take some time before you start feeling better if dehydration has been an issue in the past; be patient and know that slowly increasing your intake is more effective than skipping meals entirely or being overly restrictive with how much fluid your body gets.

2. Eat Slowly

  • Many of us aren’t aware of how many calories we consume when we eat. One study found that people who took one and a half hours to finish their meal consumed 12% fewer calories than those who ate in less than 15 minutes. Those who chewed each bite 40 times consumed 16% fewer calories, and those who chewed each bite 15 times consumed 21% fewer calories. Additionally, eating slowly can help you eat more mindfully—meaning you’ll be better able to recognize your feelings of fullness as they occur. If a plate of food is still in front of you, but you're no longer hungry or enjoying it, stop eating! Keep yourself from feeling too stuffed by taking small bites instead of large ones.

3. Add Some Salt to Your Food

  • Just a little pinch can add up to more than 1,000 mg of sodium in one day. (The average American consumes about 3,400 mg per day.) That’s because a small amount of salt contains about 2,000 mg of sodium. The solution? Make sure you’re checking nutrition labels for sodium content, swap out your usual table salt for a lower-sodium variety or try herbs and spices—they can help get food on your plate with less salt. See how salt intake varies around the world. (Note: some foods may naturally contain more or less sodium.)

4. Focus on Chewing

  • Oftentimes, we eat while our mind is preoccupied with other things, and many of us simply don’t realize that we’re overindulging until it’s too late. To curb overeating, try to be mindful about every bite you take and focus on chewing thoroughly; not only will you avoid overeating by realizing when you are full, but chewing slowly can help delay your sense of satiety. It takes about 20 minutes for your stomach to signal that it's full--and if you're rushing through dinner, those calories may end up with nowhere else to go! Chew 30 times per mouthful or until you feel like you can't swallow another bite. When all else fails--don't sit down at dinner hungry.
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5. Eat when you are Not Hungry

  • Most of us know that when we are not hungry, food often tastes better than when we are hungry. This is because our sense of taste and smell is heightened during hunger (think about when you have a cold and can't smell anything). To curb your appetite, choose healthy snacks that appeal to your senses. You can also try eating a healthy snack that takes time to consume. It takes about 20 minutes for your stomach to send signals of fullness and satiety—so eating slowly may help you regulate your calorie intake before you overeat.

6. Make Time for Breakfast

  • Breakfast with a healthy mix of protein and fiber will leave you feeling full and energized throughout your morning. If you eat breakfast, make sure it is at least 250 calories and contains a balance of carbs, fats, and proteins. Eating breakfast can even lead to weight loss in some people—not because of what’s in your morning meal but because eating it helps you form better habits for all your meals throughout the day. Remember that fruit juice does not count as whole food—it’s more like soda than like an apple.

7. Don’t Rely on Willpower

  • If you’re someone who struggles with eating, it’s important not to rely on willpower alone. Research has shown that our ability to exert self-control declines after about 30 minutes of any task. If you know you’re going out for drinks and food, then it’s best not to bring unhealthy appetizers or sugary cocktails into your home. Put them away so they don’t make tempting distractions when temptation hits!

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Healthy Body

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