Understanding Head Hungry and Real Hunger

gastric_bypass_what_to_expect_after_surgery-W_y4iulx So when you undergo Gastric Sleeve or Gastric Bypass surgery your new stomach is now referred to as a pouch, because your stomach is now much much smaller than that of an average person. In the beginning it is very easy to read your new pouch and know when you are full, but when you get farther out and life starts to settle back in we can loose site of our full or satisfied feeling and then begin to overeat again.

Prior to surgery majority of us were emotional eaters meaning we ate when we were happy, we ate when we were sad and then after surgery that is no longer an option for us. This emotional eating can also become a serious addiction for many of us, who simply do not know how to deal with our emotions after eating or just don’t want to feel those emotions. So what we soon learn after having surgery is understanding when we are really hungry or when we are head hungry. What I mean by head hungry is when you have impulsive craving for something for example something sweet or salty or sugary and we feel we must have whatever that item is. Majority of the time this is called head hungry, meaning you are not actually hungry but you are having a nagging or impulsive voice in your head telling you that you are hungry.

Sometimes our head hungry voice will even tell us throughout day “Hey you had a really bad day, you deserve a reward or a treat”, or maybe “Just one more cookie or chip” or how about the good old “Hey it’s the weekend we can splurge”. This is what we refer to as head hunger and not actual hunger. During phase this when we tend to reach for those unhealthy options that we crave, not what we need. Now physical hunger on the other hand is a whole completely animal, this is a gnawing sensation in your actual pouch, which is easily fixed with a healthy snack.

So how do you know which hunger you are presently feeling? The best option is to try drinking a full glass of water when you are getting those hunger pains, if the hunger subsides more than likely you were dealing with head hunger not actual physical hunger. Before surgery we could gorge ourselves on our favorite snacks and treats to help deal with our emotions and this is no longer an option for us after surgery. So you have to learn to begin to recognize when we are trying to deal with emotions of our day with food, and instead of using food as our coping tool learn to deal with your actual emotions.

Choose also foods that are NOT slider foods when you eat, slider foods are those foods that do not stay in our pouch long and make us feel food. For example those are things like crackers, soups, chips, any liquids or soft mushy foods like yogurt. Try instead to fill your pouch with healthy and hearty options that will stay in your pouch longer and help give you that sense of fullness. Last but not least remember the golden rules for your new pouch:

  • When sitting down for a meal try to make that meal last longer than normal for at least 15-20 minutes per meal
  • Take smaller bites and chew really well
  • DO NOT drink when eating this is a hard one to remember even for me, but when you eat at the same time that you eat this will only push your food through your pouch and leave you once again hungry. Wait at least 30 minutes after eating before drinking.
  • Eat your proteins first, by filling up on your proteins you are giving your pouch and your brain that full feeling and only leaving a small area to fill with those other options.

 

 

 

 

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About Angie

Single Mom of two girls on a journey to get healthy by losing weight and learning to love herself again!

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