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The Weight Loss Gremlin Called Ghrelin

Articles Inspirational articles from Hay House authors

The Weight Loss Gremlin Called Ghrelin

Julie Daniluk Shares 8 Tips For Feeling Fuller
Julie  Daniluk
Julie Daniluk More by this author
Jul 09, 2015 at 11:15 AM

When your stomach is empty it produces a hormone called ghrelin that causes hunger. Think of ghrelin like the gremlin that is sabotaging your weight loss efforts. If you let yourself go hungry, your cravings will be too intense to resist!

The trick is to stay full. The way to get rid of the “ghrelin gremlin” is to eat wholesome foods that suppress your appetite. No gimmicks, no crash diets, just consistent tools to help you stay full and satisfied. Reduce your calorie intake by just 500 calories a day and you could lose 50 lbs a year! This can be as easy as cutting back 3 ounces of potato chips or one cheeseburger a day.

 Banish hunger with fiber

Fiber is a type of carbohydrate you can't digest. This is great news for weight loss because it means fiber has no calories.

 How long will fiber keep you satiated?

Fill up your stomach with a large glass of water and 1 or 2 tablespoons of flax or chia, it will stop the release of the hunger hormone ghrelin for approximately an hour (results will vary depending on the person). These seeds absorb water and moisture in the stomach, becoming a sponge. It physically expands in the stomach & makes you feel full, so you will eat less! Start off taking small amounts and gradually increase the dose depending on how your gut responds.

 When do you take fiber?

Take ground flax or soaked chia with meals. Make sure to consume enough fluid to create the sponge effect. Flax and chia is great in shakes or apple sauce, where the liquid is built into the food. Be careful to drink lots of liquid because if you don’t, then the fiber can become like cork in your digestive tract and cause painful cramps or constipation. The best time to have fiber would be at breakfast, after dinner or before bed. If you’re going to have fiber alone between meals, then accompany it with at least 12 ounces of water.

 An apple a day may also keep your appetite away

Apples contain up to 5 grams of fiber so they are the perfect snack. But fermenting apple cider into vinegar is one of the best ways to reduce hunger. Acetic acid, the active ingredient in apple cider vinegar, helps keep food in the stomach for a longer period of time so release of the hunger hormone ghrelin is delayed. Vinegar also improves digestion, and it helps you feel full faster and for a longer period of time.

 Apple Cider Vinegar to the rescue!

Acetic acid also helps prevent spikes in blood sugar following a meal and will lower the glycemic index of many foods. In the study by Dr. Östman and team, a dose of approximately 2 tablespoons gave the best results, and blood levels of sugar and insulin remained normalized for at least 45 minutes after women and men ate a meal of vinegar and white bread. If vinegar can help people cope with high glycemic foods like white bread, then imagine how effective it would be if you ate healthy whole grains! You can expect it to fight cravings for 1—1.5 hours, depending on the contents of the meal consumed, but the effects of increased fat metabolism in the liver can extend more than 3 hours after a meal!

 When do you take apple cider vinegar?

One teaspoon of apple cider vinegar mixed with sparkling water makes a great cocktail. Drink this with meals to support digestion and regulate your blood sugar. A study by White and Johnston in 2007 showed that taking vinegar at bedtime helps regulate blood sugar levels the next morning.

Guacamole it up to drop the fat!

When your stomach is empty it produces a hormone called ghrelin that causes hunger. Think of ghrelin like the gremlin that is sabotaging your weight loss efforts. If you let yourself go hungry, your cravings will be too intense to resist. The trick is to maintain a sense of fullness. The way to get rid of the “ghrelin gremlin” is to eat specific foods that suppress your appetite. No gimmicks, no crash diets, just consistent tools to help you stay full and satisfied.

Ghrelin heightens the appeal of high calorie foods, and is the reason we gravitate toward carbohydrate-rich comfort foods like cereal, bagels, bread, or pasta. When you’re feeling stressed out, opt instead for a creamy avocado sprinkled with sea salt – something that is not going to spike your blood sugar. Not only do the healthy oleic acids (a type of monounsaturated fat) in the avocado support healthy hair, skin, and nails, but they will suppress appetite because they take longer to digest. Avocados are also a great source of soluble fiber.

Further, avocados can decrease leptin resistance. It was first believed that leptin should be lowered because high levels of leptin in the bloodstream are associated with obesity, but it turns out that levels increase when the body becomes less sensitive to leptin, requiring it to produce more in order for the signal to be heard. Leptin produces a feeling of fullness after a meal. Certain foods can decrease leptin resistance and help restore the body’s regular function.

Enjoy dinner for breakfast!

Levels of glucose, insulin and ghrelin, an appetite hormone are lower when someone eats a big breakfast. A study indicated that those who make an effort to eat most of their calories before 2 pm may lower their risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, , and hypertension. To really get fast results, consider eating dinner for breakfast. By eating veggies and protein for breakfast, you balance your blood sugar and reduce your hunger hormone ghrelin even further! Left overs will do if you don’t have much time in the morning for cooking. After you get used to eating savoury food for breakfast you will appreciate how much more energy and mental focus you have. For more healing breakfast ideas check out my books Slimming Meals That Heal and Meals That Heal Inflammation.

References:
1. Effect of apple cider vinegar on delayed gastric emptying in patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus: a pilot study: Joanna Hlebowicz, Gassan Darwiche, Ola Björgell and Lars-Olof Almér: BMC Gastroenterology 2007, 7:46 doi:10.1186/1471-230X-7-46
2. Vinegar supplementation lowers glucose and insulin responses and increases satiety after a bread meal in healthy subjects: Ostman E, Granfeldt Y, Persson L, Björck I: Eur J Clin Nutr. 2005 Sep;59(9):983-8.
3. Vinegar Ingestion at Bedtime Moderates Waking Glucose Concentrations in Adults With Well-Controlled Type 2 Diabetes: Andrea M. White, PHD, Carol S. Johnston, PHD: Diabetes Care, Volume 30, Number 11, November 2007.

 

Author and Nutritionist Julie Daniluk’s first bestselling book, Meals that Heal Inflammation, advises on allergy-free eating that tastes great and assists the body in the healing process. In Julie’s second book, Slimming Meals That Heal, she helps people shatter the need to count calories and conquer cravings by offering the Live-It. As the co-host of the reality cooking show Healthy Gourmet (Oprah Winfrey Network), she negotiates the ongoing battle between taste and nutrition. You can check out her amazing recipes and nutrition tips at www.juliedaniluk.com


Connect with Julie on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @JulieDaniluk

 

About Author
Julie  Daniluk
Julie Daniluk, RHN, best-selling author of Meals That Heal Inflammation (Hay House), has helped thousands of people enjoy allergy-free foods that taste great and assist the body in the healing process. She is also the co-host of TV’s Heal Continue reading
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