What is the difference between fasting and hunger?

Hunger is a highly suggestible state. One minute we may not be hungry, but when in close proximity to a highly desirable aroma of food, we may in fact induce the feelings of hunger within moments! Hunger is also a learned response, in which you can read more about it via the Ivan Pavlov study regarding a dogs response to food.

We become hungry for various reasons, both natural and conditioned. Conditioned responses seem to be a lot more powerful in terms of hunger magnification. One example of this is when we eat lunch. If you are conditioned to eating lunch at 12 on the dot, this time will become a conditioned stimulus that triggers hunger in your body. This will be the case even if you had a very large breakfast or snack before your lunch hour. Isn’t it fascinating to actually realise this? Could this in fact be one thing that’s inhibiting you from achieving your weight loss goals?

Sometimes it’s not even our own habits and self conditioning. Food companies constantly bombard us with visions of succulent foods on TV, billboards and advertising all around us. The delicious visual can make us hungry, even if we had just eaten moments before hand! Think of all those pizza and burger commercials.

How is fasting different from this?

Well, intermittent fasting provides a very realistic and easy solution in breaking the habit of conditioned eating. When you skip meals, as well as varying the intervals of when you eat, you begin to break the habit of forced conditioning. We actually begin to allow our own bodies natural hunger signals to become the sign for us to eat! Breaking habitual associations with foods will allow you to be in control of your body composition and health – as well as provide you with many positive life changing habits. You will no longer become a slave to a forced response that once seemed out of your own control.

What we should grasp is our constant bombardment of food available in every single corner. Wherever we turn there is a coffee shop, super market or deli. Fasting helps us re-condition our responses towards this, making it easier to resist cravings and negative food choices without a lot of effort or restraint. This is huge for many people, as we all have our own levels of self control. As you know, when you restrict foods via a calorie controlled diet, it’s a lot harder to tame that control, mainly because we have not combated the root cause of the problem. The hunger still lingers, and we have not allowed to food we do it, satisfy us properly.

Intermittent fasting differs from regular diets, because you are allocating one time in a day (or perhaps two depending on your schedule) to eat a meal, filled with the nutrients you need, whilst skipping the rest. Yes, there is a form of restriction, as you are not eating for the rest of the time – but, the next day, you can begin to eat again. Calorie restricted diets have a long term restriction allocated to them. Over time, this can break us down and cause us to become irritated, lethargic and bored with our long term food choices. Fasting however, takes on a completely different way dealing with restriction, and it’s only open to a small or long window. You can choose to fast for 16, 18, 20 or 24 hours – even beyond this. Once you begin to experiment with these numbers, not only will you see a miraculous change in your body shape, but also huge improvements in your health, metabolism and ability to perform high level tasks. This is completely the opposite of calorie restriction long term.

The great news is that fasting is another calorie restricter, but without the downfalls of calorie counting and it also conditions your body’s ability to burn fat stores. Calorie restriction long term through diet alone decreases your metabolism by diminishing your muscle mass.

I highly encourage you to try intermittent fasting to stop food cravings and conditioning of hunger, that is best left to your bodies own response, not those of external factors.

If you have any pressing question about IF, you can contact me any time on my website or join me on fb and insta social. Please feel free to upvote this answer if it has been useful in some way to you.

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