Reduce the calories you consume and you will lose weight. It seems simple enough, but there is only one problem: your stomach will inevitably complain and sooner or later you will succumb. The reason is that when your body knows that there is a lack of food it produces more ghrelin, which is the hunger hormone that forces us to eat. To solve this annoying problem, here are a few dietary tricks on how to curb appetite naturally:
1. Eat protein in the morning
Lean protein can keep you full for longer , because it takes your body longer to digest. A study by Purdue University found that eating lean protein (like egg whites or low fat yogurt) at breakfast curbs appetite more than if you eat it at a different time during the day. Try to consume at least 30 grams of protein at breakfast.
2. Eat potatoes
The low-curb frenzy has placed potatoes in the list of "forbidden" foods, but the truth is that this starchy food is an excellent choice if you want to reduce hunger. It contains a special type of starch that is resistant to digestive enzymes. This means that potatoes take time to break up and thus remain in the intestine for longer periods of time, which can help you curb appetite. Of course, it goes without saying that if you cook them with a lot of oil (French fries), then they can do more harm than good.
3. Eat some fat
If you eliminate all the fat from your diet, your efforts will probably fail. Dietary fat is essential for the healthy functioning of your body and it may also be useful in curbing appetite. For example, according to a study published in the journal Cell Metabolism, oleic acid, which is an unsaturated fatty acid found in olive oil, nuts and avocados, can help to reduce hunger. This happens because during digestion oleic acid is converted into a compound that activates indirectly signals in the brain that curb appetite.
4. Go to the gym
Contrary to popular belief, exercise may curb appetite instead of increasing it. By visiting the gym not only will you burn calories, but you may also end up eating less. A study published in the American Journal of Physiology found that 60 minutes of intense aerobic exercise can curb appetite for up to 2 hours.
5. Chew some gum
Research by the University of Rhode Island found that people who chewed gum for one hour in the morning consumed 67 fewer calories during the day. One theory that may explain this phenomenon is that chewing may stimulate some nerves in the jaw that are linked with the brain region that is responsible for satiety. What is more, chewing gum can burn 11 additional calories per hour. Not much, but it’s better than nothing. Just make sure that the gum is sugarless and contains no calories.
6. Smell your food instead of eating it
The smell of food can fool the brain into thinking you have already eaten. A study found that people who smelled peppermint scent every 2 hours consumed 2,700 fewer calories per week than they would normally do - which translates to a loss of almost one pound! The odor of banana, green apple and vanilla had similar effects.