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How to Control, Ignore, or Suppress Your Hunger and Lose Weight

Updated on February 29, 2020

***DISCLAIMER*** I, gamergirl, am a curvy person. At five foot six and a half inches tall, I weighed in recently at just a hair over one hundred seventy pounds. 18 months ago, I weighed over 300 pounds. Using the tips in this hub, and with sporadic exercise, I have lost roughly 130 pounds.

I was a heavy snacker and a person who ate a lot of fatty, fried, or fast foods. Here on this page you will find my top tips for curbing your hunger - TEMPORARILY. Long-term deprivation of nutrients and sustenance to your body can do far more damage than eating that double cheeseburger will. Please do not use the tips I am about to give you for more than a few hours.

I repeat: the advice you are about to read is about temporary solutions to hunger, and not provided by a nutritionist. These tips are based on personal experience and anecdotal evidence. Use them to pass that last hour before you go home for dinner, or when you have the urge to gorge yourself. If you want to find a "quick fix" to breaking some bad habits, you're in the wrong place.

Video may be shocking. You've been warned.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
This was me in June 2009, before portion control and the tips in this Hub.
This was me in June 2009, before portion control and the tips in this Hub.
This was me in June 2009, before portion control and the tips in this Hub.

The Fatty Truth

Let me burst all your bubbles right away so we can get to business.

There are ZERO easy methods to lose weight.

There are no mysteries, no miracle drugs.

There is only the changing of habits and a conscious effort minute-by-minute, day-by-day, and month-by-month to control cravings, hunger and overeating.

Are you still with me? Good.

There are numerous ways to control hunger, to suppress your appetite during the day. We're busy folks these days, fast food chains replace restaurants all over the country in what should be our first warning sign that our eating habits are getting out of control.

So, the next time you're driving past a McDonalds, Sonic, or even Subway, try something from this list to stave off that impulsive craving for food:

Drink water. Most people do not drink enough water to keep the body properly hydrated. If you drink 20 ounces of water a day, you are still drinking more water than a great number of Americans.

Chew gum. The calories you might take in (next to none) from the gum will be spent in the chewing process, keeping your mouth busy and satisfying any underlying urge for shoving food in your gullet.

Talk. Another diversionary tactic that can also help stimulate your mind and help you form deeper bonds with someone. If you're traveling alone, call a friend you haven't talked to in a while and catch up with them.

If you're at the office, at home, or anywhere else outside of your vehicle:

Walk it off. Remind yourself that your next meal comes at (whatever time you generally eat) and keep on moving.

Indulge in a different interest, such as window-shopping in your favorite part of the store, if that is where you are when hunger strikes.

When you're at home and the craving strikes, do an errand you've been putting off for a while and tell yourself, you can go check the fridge after you're done. Then, if you're still hungry by the time you've done that errand, reward yourself with some ice-cold water. Ha! I tricked you! (Drinking water is one of my favorite solutions, because frankly I don't drink enough of it, which means neither do you, tubby.)

Gaining Motivation to Lose Weight

This is me as of January 2012, 130 pounds lighter!
This is me as of January 2012, 130 pounds lighter!

You are beautiful, no matter what you weigh!

So, let's recap here.

When you get hungry, look at the clock. When do you *normally* eat your next meal? Are you overdue for your normal mealtime?

When in doubt, DRINK MORE WATER. You cannot overdose on water, your body needs it, and aside from helping to give a short-term break from hunger, drinking enough water every day will actually help you have more beautiful hair, skin and assist your digestive processes... HELPING YOU LOSE WEIGHT!

Fresh fruit is a good substitute for those chocolates, chips or candies.

Be social! Interact with your fellow man. Form more solid bonds with those around you. Enrich your life through conversation, not high sugars and super processed corn syrups.

Be more physically active. Sometimes physical activity can take your mind off that rich treat, that greasy snack, or even that Starbucks drink you love so much.

Be thinking about it. Maintaining your weight takes effort. Losing weight takes even more effort. You're not just fighting the laziness of your body, you're battling hard-coded mental patterns that YOU created.

And please.. I'll say this one more time.. please please please do not starve yourself. If you feel like you need to lose weight, do research, be proactive about it, talk to your health care professional and make healthy choices.

What has worked for me:

A more effective weight loss or weight control strategy for me has been a twofold process. First, I needed to tackle the foods I ate.

My first goal was to reduce my individual portion size and completely eliminate snacking. Frequently, we use snacking to carry ourselves over until our proper meal, but if you aren't careful, you'll find yourself replacing your intended meal with the snacks you've consumed, and typically our snacks aren't as good for us as a solid meal would have been.

The other goal in reducing my portion size was significantly reducing the amount of fried or "convenience" foods I ate. Eating more home-cooked meals means I control the things I'm putting in my body, too.

The only other advice I can give if you are trying to lose weight in a healthy manner is that you need to get up and get active. It is unrealistic to think that if you only change your eating habits you'll lose an incredible amount of weight.

Whether you choose to start walking more, hit the gym, start an exercise plan, or take up a new outdoor activity, adding more activity to your daily routine - by which I mean doing things that get your body moving - will supplement your changes in diet and give your body a reason to use the energy it has stored as fat. Building muscle will help you burn fat, and you can only burn calories by using the energy your body has contained within it.

So, get off your butt, go do something you enjoy. Find something new you can spend your time doing. You'll see results, just like I have. THAT I can guarantee.

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    • profile image

      Victoria L. 

      9 years ago

      One way I have ignored hunger is by temporarily "forgetting" what it feels like. Such as when I feel rumbling in my stomach, I pretend that I don't know what is causing it. It may sound weird, but I've used it a couple times and it works! It's all psychological. ;-)

    • BarryCross profile image

      Barry Cross 

      9 years ago from York, UK

      Huge congrats on your weight loss success, great to see. Love the Hub you have given readers some real value and from the heart valid tips.

      Apples are also great to snack on because of their negative calorie value. I am the same as you being a huge water drinker, 1 pint before and after every meal/snack, it really works.

      Voted up, socially shared and you have a new follower. Looking forwad to reading more of your fab Hubs!

      Cheers, Barry :)

    • gamergirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Kiz Robinson 

      9 years ago from New Orleans, Louisiana

      Mr Calculator - No. I weigh 170 now. I have lost over 130 pounds total, over the course of my weight loss. I started out at over 300 pounds.

    • profile image

      Mr Calculator 

      9 years ago

      You were 170lbs & lost 130lbs? So you now weigh 40 lbs? Are you a dog?

    • profile image

      Wendy 

      9 years ago

      Good advice - one warning - apparently it is possible to overdose, and die from drinking too much water. Look it up - it's a lot of water.

    • HikeGuy profile image

      Bryce 

      9 years ago from Northern California Coast

      Good tips. Drinking water and eating foods high in nutrients instead of sweets and processed foods can reduce cravings. Good to see an article that promotes positive body image.

    • profile image

      alliemae 

      9 years ago

      Just wanted to comment on the video. While it is a very good video, I think people need to be aware that not all anorexics are emaciated. You can have an eating disorder and still be at what is considered to be a healthy weight. (This is what most often causes problems with getting insurance coverage for eating disorder treatment.) It is a deadly disease, but you do not need to be emaciated to die from it.

    • Glemoh101 profile image

      Glemoh101 

      10 years ago

      Yes i agree with you completely , thanks for your great hub.

    • profile image

      Nivlac 

      10 years ago

      hardcore but so true we have really lost the plot as

      people i sole blame the media .....

    • gamergirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Kiz Robinson 

      10 years ago from New Orleans, Louisiana

      Absolutely, Marisa.

      It should go without saying that if you have a medical condition, you should take the advice of your doctor. But still, 2 liters of fluid is still quite a bit more than a lot of folks take in.

      Things like annual physicals, regular checkups with the doctor and all of that will go a LONG way toward making an informed move toward health.

    • JohnBarret profile image

      JohnBarret 

      10 years ago

      @Marisa, yes I was thinking to say that of course water has a limit. Even it has a high limit but still there is a limit.

      Well, it is overall a great Hub and very informative. Good Job.

    • Marisa Wright profile image

      Kate Swanson 

      10 years ago from Sydney

      Charlotte, just a quick note about water. It's true a normal, healthy adult can drink a LOT of water without worrying about water intoxication - but people also need to bear in mind, they may have a medical condition that's not diagnosed.

      My sister recently discovered she has a heart problem. The heart is what pumps liquid around the body - the kidneys only process it. Drinking too much water means the heart is put under excessive load. She has been encouraged to drink 2 litres of fluid a day (because that's healthy) but NEVER to go over that limit. And that includes all fluids, not just water.

      Her heart condition had no symptoms - so if you have any concern at all about your heart, or heart problems run in your family, you do need to be sensible about water consumption.

    • gamergirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Kiz Robinson 

      10 years ago from New Orleans, Louisiana

      jen-

      Let me be clear. A healthy adult can drink - in normal quantities spread out over the course of a day - anywhere from 1-4 gallons of water without overwhelming their kidneys. Given that the average American (the fattest country in the world as well as the most obsessed with the quick fix diet fad -my opinion-) drinks less than 20 ounces of water per day, the great lengths that would have to be gone to by said average American would be to, in effect, multiply their water intake by TWENTY FIVE TIMES.

      Absolutely, water intoxication is a risk, if your kidneys are not healthy, if you drink more than 4 gallons of water in the course of a normal day, or if you attempt to drink too much water in too short a time. Understanding how your body works is just one facet of achieving fitness.

    • profile image

      jen 

      10 years ago

      it was stated that "you cannot overdose on water."

      however this is a common misconception. you CAN DIE FROM TOO MUCH WATER.

      it's called water intoxication.

      "All things are poison and nothing is without poison, only the dose permits something not to be poisonous."

    • profile image

      Klaumwell 

      10 years ago

      Very compelling video. It seems like both extremes, either too skinny or too fat, can create some disturbing pictures.

    • freelancewriterva profile image

      freelancewriterva 

      11 years ago

      Excellent tips. This hubpage is informative

    • Kitchen_Witch profile image

      Kitchen_Witch 

      11 years ago from The Green Studio of Musings

      Good hub.

      Water in moderation its a tricky balance.

      sometimes we eat because we really are thirsty, Looking for the moisture in the food. some people go by the 64 ounces a day guideline. some people feel they should be drinking water everytime they move, the water bottle as an accessory crowd. LOL

    • profile image

      Need to Lose 10 pounds 

      11 years ago

      Thanks for the information, I will definatelty try this, I had a baby last year and stoped breastfeeding a couple of months ago, since then i've slowly been gaining the wieght back. I will try these thing and hopefully it will work.

    • profile image

      anon. 

      12 years ago

      Just want to say fantastic post but one thing, you actually can overdose on water! It's called water intoxication, very rare but real. Water like all other healthy things should be taken regularly but in moderation! : D

    • gamergirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Kiz Robinson 

      12 years ago from New Orleans, Louisiana

      Congratulations Britney! You probably ARE healthier now with a little extra weight. Many people do not realize that they are making themselves sick by trying to be so skinny!

    • profile image

      Britney in Texas 

      12 years ago

      I weighed about 120 lbs around this time last year. Got into a litle trouble went to jail for three months and gained a lot of weight. I went from 120 to 190 in that short amount of time. Right after I got out I made it a major deal to lose all of that weight. I even got stretchmarks on my thighs. Well I weigh 150 now, I wasnt able to getr back down to 120 but when I look at pics when I was that thin, I looked sick. I am very satisfied with my weight now. I have nice curves and my stomach is flat, although I am a little thick but in all the right places. I feel healthy now.

    • mroconnell profile image

      Ryan OConnell 

      13 years ago from California

      I cracked open a bottle of water just now!

    • mroconnell profile image

      Ryan OConnell 

      13 years ago from California

      sorry double post. I guess that means I should open a second bottle. BOTTOMS UP!

    • profile image

      RFox 

      13 years ago

      Great Hub! Love the fact that you included the video. It gave a good healthy balance to your topic. You are always thinking G.G. It's so good to see! :D

    • ripplemaker profile image

      Michelle Simtoco 

      13 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Hi Charlotte, the gamergirl :) I agree with what you said that in maintaining a healthy weight, what we need is to change our eating as well as lifestyle habits. Crash diets may work for a time but eventually you will gain the extra pounds again. Great tips...

    • Rhym O'Reison profile image

      Rhym O'Reison 

      13 years ago from Crowley, Tx

      I am not overweight (yet), but I do overeat sometimes because I mistake boredom for hunger. These are great suggestions to help break some bad habits.

    • G-Ma Johnson profile image

      Merle Ann Johnson 

      13 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

      pheww.. that was great..and I also Thank you for refreshing my mind..as you grow older you do manage to add a few un-wanted pounds...but so what...curvie is good and sexy as far as I know....I AM A PORPORTIONED over weight lady so is ok..I think...God gave me this body sooo what else can I do...drink more water, chew more gum, and wait 21 days I guess... Thanks my sweet lady...G-Ma :o) hugs

    • Sally's Trove profile image

      Sherri 

      13 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

      For people who try to quit smoking, one bit of advice is to sit quietly through that urge to have a cigarette, because if you can do that, if you can let the urge work itself out and pass, you will not want a cigarette...temporarily.

      Gum chewing, exercising, and engaging with people in an environment where it's not permitted to smoke will help as well.

      Just as you say, Charlotte, these are temporary solutions. However, if you do enough of them long enough, theoretically, they can make a difference.

      I learned somewhere that it takes 21 days to break a habit, and 21 days to create a new one. So if you can practice water drinking, gum chewing, social engaging, and paying attention to your internal urges over 21 days, perhaps the food habit or the smoking habit can become broken.

      Just speculating here, because your hub was food for thought, so to speak.

      And the men and women in the video are just tragic. There is no easy solution, is there? Underlying any addiction is a cause, which may never be revealed.

    • Susan Ng profile image

      Susan Ng Yu 

      13 years ago

      I admit that I'm one of those who strive to be "slim" but not to the point of looking like a cadaver! The people in that video looked like walking corpses! :o

    • profile image

      Inyene 

      13 years ago

      Thanks so much for this reminder, I used to be a 'water addict' but I stopped, I will start again as it is a very good habit

    • Princessa profile image

      Wendy Iturrizaga 

      13 years ago from France

      Drinking water, tea and coffe works for me. Chewing gum too. I find the best way is to keep myself entertained with something until the next meal time...

      It is true, we are in a society where we think about weigth and looks all the time. It is scary what some people might do to be thin. It is important to accept our bodies the way they are. After all women were meant to have curves to store fat for having healthy babies, evolution isn't it?

    • topstuff profile image

      topstuff 

      13 years ago

      Thats all because there is much misconception about dieting.Dieting is taken for starving.And dieting hsa nothing to do with starving.

    • sdorrian profile image

      sdorrian 

      13 years ago from Chicago

      Great Hub! Our society is so focused on being thin, yet junky food is so easliy available, it's a struggle for many of us (including me). The video is horrific and heartbreaking. Those girls look like concentration camp survivors and yet they see themselves as obese. Anorexia of so cruel. It attacks the mind and, consequently, the body at the same time.

    • Fat Loss Secret profile image

      Fat Loss Secret 

      13 years ago from San Francisdo

      Great tips! I find that apples make me feel hungry so I choose other fruit. Does anyone else notice that?

    • Patience Virtue profile image

      Patience Virtue 

      13 years ago from All Over

      Excellent advice, thanks so much for the fun hub!

    • caspar profile image

      caspar 

      13 years ago from UK

      Great hub, gamergirl. What a sad, sad video.

      I think it's important to stick to regular mealtimes. That way I don't get hungry in between and snack on unhealthy stuff when I'm out.

    • In The Doghouse profile image

      In The Doghouse 

      13 years ago from California

      gamegirl

      Thank you for the great article. I too am a "curvy" girl (I like that tem much better than some I have heard, lol). Water is really a key ingredient as is exercise, I am terrible at both! Thanks for the reminder to be better.

    • gamergirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Kiz Robinson 

      13 years ago from New Orleans, Louisiana

      Think about it, water makes up 2/3 of our weight.. so if you drink water, you're actually helping your body properly process everything else you've consumed. We need water to be healthy, so to -GET- healthy water is a reasonable start.

      This doesn't mean that a glass or two of water replaces a healthy diet or exercise, just that it helps. :D

    • Rudra profile image

      Rudra 

      13 years ago

      Drinking water seems to be a good idea.

    • jim.sheng profile image

      Dalriada Books 

      13 years ago from UK

      My secret trick is to live as a miser: Whenever I pass by Mcdonald's and am starving, but it's not my meal time, I will do some calculation and comparison of the price, and tell myself that the cost of one McDonald's hamburger far more expensive than homemade hamburger; when I pass a sandwich bar, I will say to myself, "It's far too expensive, cheese egg sandwich, how can they sell for two pound fifty?"

      And I am a Chinese, I know the exchange rate of Chinese Yuan with sterling, one sandwich plus a drink will cost me one day salary in China, no way. Then I start to go back home and feel happy thinking: I am working so hard to write hubpage, if somebody clicks through and I earn only 5 cents, now I go home for that sandwich and cup of tea, I save 2 pound, how many cents is that?

    • gamergirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Kiz Robinson 

      13 years ago from New Orleans, Louisiana

      Thank you very much, folks!

    • compu-smart profile image

      Tony Sky 

      13 years ago from London UK

      Very good tips Charlotte:)

    • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

      Zsuzsy Bee 

      13 years ago from Ontario/Canada

      Great HUB!

      regards Zsuzsy

    • Isabella Snow profile image

      Isabella Snow 

      13 years ago

      Wow, I couldnt watch even half that video. Scary stuff. Great hub, and nothing wrong with curves!!!

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile image

      Ashok Rajagopalan 

      13 years ago from Chennai

      I talk, walk and drink gallons of water; guess I'm doing good! :)

      Thank you, Charlotte, that was reassuring and 

      your empathy with those of us who get hungry 

      but are afraid to over eat is obvious. 

      Too thin, is unhealthy and not beautiful. God, ladies, keep some curves intact!

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