Feeling like you're always hungry? Constantly snacking? There can be a slew of reasons for this including poor quality of sleep, nutrient deficiencies, stress, hormone levels, or changes in your energy expenditure, so always check in with a doctor, but one common reason can be that your meals or snacks aren’t well-rounded.
What do I mean by well-rounded? You’re missing one, two, or all three of the essential satiating factors in your meals: protein, fats, and fiber.
According to an article in the Harvard Health Letter, this combo allows you to feel fuller for longer and keep your hormones in balance.
This is important because eating a meal high in carbs or sugar alone can spike your blood sugar, causing insulin and cortisol to rise leading to an imbalance in hormones affecting your energy levels, ability to be satiated and can even effect periods and sex drive.
Simple ways to make your meals more satisfying:
Sprinkle a bit of goat or feta cheese on top of your toast, salad, grain bowls (really anything)
If you’re sensitive to lactose try hemp hearts, sliced nuts, or even olive oil. This will help amp up the protein and fat factors.
Sprouts can be a great topper for anything, even pizza. They are extremely nutrient dense and a great way to increase the fiber (and even the protein) content of your meal or snack.
Nuts to go
Nuts are THE satiating trio in one food - protein, fat, and fiber all packed into one! Perfect for on the go as well. I love to pair nuts with some Hu Gems and maybe even some fruit - YUM!
Smoothies are a great way to get in your nutrients and the satiating trio. With smoothies, be aware that unless you are blending the whole contents of the fruit (skin, pulp, etc), the nutrient content does lower a bit when blending everything together and can be less satisfying since you are not physically chewing food.
But, if it's between eating something highly processed with no nutrients or having a smoothie, pick the smoothie! It’s again a great way to get in those nutrients, protein, fat and fiber, especially if you’re not keen on eating it
Beware - not all smoothies are created equal. Lots of to-go smoothies contain fruit juices, added sugars, or lack protein and fat. Opt for making a smoothie at home, or one that has a base of water or nut milk, a few fruits, a fat such as peanut or almond butter, greens such as spinach or spirulina, and a protein source (this could be the nut butter but try to opt for something with a little more protein) such as whey/plant protein power or a nut and seed blend.
My go to’s:
Hu chocolate (gems or bars) and almonds
Rice cake/Sprouted bread, banana, almond butter, hu gems or hemp seeds
Any of the meals can be turned into a snack and vice versa depending on quantity and what you’re feeling :)
Basic Avo Toast: Sprouted bread, avocado, EBB (everything but the bagel), egg with spinach or sprouts/hemp seeds sprinkled on top
Oatmeal Bowl: oatmeal, Ancient Nutrition protein, chia seeds, raspberries or strawberries, nut butter
Veggie Bowl: chicken, japanese sweet potato, TJ’s vegan pesto, goat cheese, mixed frozen veggies or broccoli
Tuna Toast: Sprouted bread or rice cake, avocado, Safe Catch or TJ’s tuna fish, goat cheese, hemp seeds
Fried Rice: rice mixed with frozen veggies and an egg, chicken, coconut aminos
Bell Pepper Sandwich: yellow or orange bell pepper stuffed with tuna, avocado, TJ’s vegan pesto, spinach
Watermelon Salad: watermelon, bell peppers, feta, chicken or tuna, mint, sprouts
Pasta Salad: spinach, tomatoes, red pepper, cilantro/parsley, chickpea pasta, feta, olive oil
Everything garnished with a dash of salt, pepper, turmeric, EBB or if it’s sweet,cinnamon!