How to Stop Hunger Pangs When Fasting
How to stop hunger while fasting is a question we get often. Some fasts are just harder than others. Even if you;ve done a lot of fasting, sometimes there is one you are uncomfortably hungry through.
If this is the case with a short 16:8 or time restricted eating fast, you just need to just get over it. Its only 16 hours. It usually takes a minimum of 12 hours to get into ketosis and you likely have slept through some part of it.
Sticking with it and training your body to burn fat is the best and fastest way to get past it.
Now, if your doing a 3-5 day water only fast or 5 day fasting mimicking diet it’s a different monster when you get hungry.
If you’re following a time restricted eating window, you’ll have to learn to deal with the pain of hunger. - Doctesta
Longer fasts can lead you to feel hangry, cold, grouchy, sleepless, or even anxious.
We don’t eat just because were hungry. Sometimes we eat because we’re bored. We spend a lot of time thinking about food; buying it, preparing, eating it and cleaning after. It’s a ritual for most. Eating is inherently tied to our survival, community, and connection.
Sometimes we also eat simply because we’re depressed or anxious.
Let’s face; one of the fastest ways to change our mood is with some sugar, salt or fat. It’s a fairly instant result and it’s at an arm’s reach.
Other times we eat because we’re pissed or stressed. Sometimes chewing and eating something takes our mind off what’s got us upset. Its hypnotic.
Not to down play legit times during a fast where we’re just downright hungry. The truth is, that happens.
Here are some top ways I tell people in my fasting programs. These methods won’t break your fast either.
5 Ways to Stop Hunger During a Fast
Fasting Hunger Tip #1: Eat some salt
One of the quickest ways to stop hunger while fasting is some good Celtic sea salt or pink Himalayan salt. This can really do the trick. I will crunch it between my teeth until I’m satisfied. This works well because we are generally losing electrolytes during a fast.
Fasting Hunger Tip #2: Drink some water
Another simple way to stop hunger while fasting, is to drink water. Some like it cold, while others like it warm or even tea temperature. Fill up the belly and give it five minutes. Your hunger will likely disappear quickly.
Fasting Hunger Tip #3: Take a walk and move
Just breathing in more oxygen and getting the blood moving will release hormones that scratch our itch. All you need is 5-10 minutes.
Fasting Hunger Tip #4: Eat an olive
Another way to stop hunger while fasting (though it is more of a last resort), is to eat an green olive. You can get away with three Castlavano green olives. These are mostly fat, super low in protein and glucose. If you do this, I recommend sitting down with a knife and fork and enjoying them to the max.
Definitely don’t make this a habit during your fasts. It’s only a rare go to if you really need to stop your hunger.
In all the fasting I’ve done, I only ate olives once. It was my first 5-day water fast on day 4. It really helped with euphoria and anxiety. I’m sure that was the first time in years I really felt what ketosis was all about.
Fasting Hunger Tip #5: Journal
Before you go as far as an olive, get out your journal. What’s going on? Write about it. See if you can get to a root cause for this difficulty. What’s the thought that has you derailed?
Fasting is done by all major religions not only for health benefit but also deeper spiritual meaning and discovery. It’s a great time for some inner work and journaling can really help facilitate that.
Sometimes simply getting your mind on something else can be the best way to stop hunger while fasting.
I hope these ideas are helpful. Hunger during a fast can be a challenging experience.
As I mentioned before, if you are eating during a time restricted eating window, then you’ll likely have to just get past the hunger. However, if you are doing an extended fast (3-5 days), then the tips I’ve outlined above should help get you through it.
For a free 30 minutes fasting strategy call schedule here: https://calendly.com/reversemiddleage/30min
About the Author: Dr. Mark Testa, DC, CAcMHA, is an expert in Fasting a Fasting Mimicking Diets. Dr. Mark is Chief Wellness Adviser for Train for Longevity and Pine Pollen Superfoods. #BeYourOwnDoctor