Dealing with Feelings of Hunger: Strategies To Apply When You Fast

Fasting and programmed diet regimes has become an increasingly popular health and wellness practice. However, one of the biggest challenges when fasting is dealing with feelings of hunger that arise. In this article, we’ll explore 9 strategies you can use to make it through periods of hunger while fasting.

Stabilize Your Blood Sugar Before Starting a Fast

One of the hardest parts of fasting is when your blood sugar drops and you start to feel shaky, irritable, and absolutely ravenous. This happens because when you fast, your body’s supply of glucose starts to run low.

The best way to prevent this blood sugar rollercoaster is to stabilize your blood sugar before starting a fast. For a couple days leading up to your fast, focus on increasing your intake of healthy fats from sources like avocados, olive oil, nuts, seeds, and nut butters. Reduce your consumption of refined carbs like breads, pastas, sugar, cookies and crackers. This will help regulate your blood sugar and insulin, making the transition into fasting smoother.

Set a Clear Fasting Goal Each Morning

When you wake up, make a clear decision about how long you plan to fast for. Setting an intention like “I’m fasting for 16 hours today” is more powerful than an open-ended goal like “I’ll try to fast as long as I can today.” Your mind craves certainty.

When you give it a specific target, it can remain focused on reaching that goal. Vague fasting goals often lead to failing early because your mind will start rationalizing reasons to stop.

Remember That Hunger Is About Needing a “State Change”

Often when we feel hungry, we’re not just lacking food physically. Hunger signals that our mental/emotional state needs a boost. Food is one of the most powerful “state changers” – it alters our brain chemistry and makes us feel happier in the moment.

When you get hungry while fasting, remember that you’re really seeking a state change more than food itself. Try other activities that lift your mood and provide a mental boost like calling a friend, taking a walk outside, listening to music, or dancing.

State-Changing Activities in A Day

Plan ahead by scheduling these state-changing activities into your day.

Stay Busy During Your Fasting Window

Hunger often strikes when we’re bored or idle. Staying busy and engaged in activities makes fasting much easier to stick to. Schedule your fast during busy workdays or times when you have lots to do. Working from home with open pockets of time can be fasting saboteurs.

If you are at home, take a nap or find a project to immerse yourself in. The busier you are, the less likely you’ll be distracted by hunger.

Use “Hacks” That Make Fasting More Comfortable

There are some tricks you can use to make fasting physically easier on your body. One of the best products is called “Fast Tonic.” This drink contains hydrogen molecules that help neutralize free radicals that are released when your cells shift into repair mode during fasting. This helps minimize side effects like fatigue, nausea, and headaches. Sipping Fast Tonic throughout your fast makes it much more comfortable.

Another good hack is drinking mineral water or products like Ion Biome to support healthy digestion and microbiome balance during your fast.

Watch Your Mindset and Limiting Beliefs

Fasting brings up a lot of limiting beliefs and old patterns. When your mother’s voice pops up saying “you need to eat when you don’t feel well,” acknowledge where those beliefs came from, then consciously reframe them. Remind yourself that ketones will start flowing soon to provide energy without food. For each limiting belief that arises, purposefully replace it with an empowering thought.

Use Blood Sugar Readings for Motivation

When hunger and cravings strike, whip out your blood sugar reader (Keto Mojo is a great one) and check your glucose and ketone levels. This shows you concrete proof that your body is burning fat, entering ketosis, and thriving in the fasted state. The measurable feedback will reinforce that you’re on the right track.

Plan How You’ll Break Your Fast

Uncertainty about how or when you’ll resume eating again can lead to obsessive thoughts about food. Before starting your fast, map out a plan for a gentle, 4-phase process to break your fast when the time comes. Removing the question of how you’ll end your fast will keep you focused in the present.

Reward Yourself

Figure out a small reward you’ll give yourself when you complete your fasting goal for the day. Will you buy that new pair of jeans you’ve been eyeing? Spend an evening watching your favorite Netflix show? Go on a weekend getaway? Dangling a carrot for yourself gives you more motivation to power through the temporary hunger until you reach your goal.

Mindset And Strategies For Dealing With Hunger

With the right mindset and strategies, you can make it through those inevitable hunger pains and cravings on your fasting journey. Remember to be compassionate with yourself in the process. Fasting is a skill that takes time, experience and troubleshooting to master. Don’t beat yourself up over slip ups. Set yourself up for success by planning ahead, reframing limiting thoughts, and leveraging tools and hacks to make fasting as easy as possible.

Consistency over time is key. With practice, you’ll get to a point where going without food for blocks of time feels second nature. Here’s to implementing these tips and making lifelong fasting success inevitable!

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