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I'm Really Hungry (Well sort of?)! Should I just shove my face for a while?

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  • I'm Really Hungry (Well sort of?)! Should I just shove my face for a while?

    Hello everyone,

    These last few days I've shifted into a pretty low carb range in my diet, I haven't been counting but the only dense carb food I've had is one banana eat day. Everything else has been meat, vegetables (the low carb kind, tomatoes, celery, etc no potatoes), eggs, nuts, olives and fats like olive oil and butter. I've also had a bit of tuna and salami (<--- not perfect but not a huge sin either).

    Today (I'd call it day three I guess) I was VERY tired at 12 - 4 and I got home and drank some bullion then I ate a tin of tuna, several slices of salami with butter on top, a handful of nuts and finally a banana. I don't feel energetic but I do feel more alive than I did before I ate it. I guess this is a pretty normal thing when I'm eating basically no carbs and my body isn't used to breaking down fat yet.

    Actually I'm not hungry like I remember being in the past but I have the continual desire to eat. Not carbs, I don't have any sugar withdrawals. Just the urge to shove my face. Has anyone else experienced this? What did you do about it? Did it go away after the first few weeks? Would you suggest I just shove my face with the right foods and not stress about it or enforce some will and go without? I'm planning to have a daily banana to keep my carbs up a little but that'll still leave me in a low range as it is my only dense carb source. Would you suggest some more carbs than that?

    Thanks for all of your advice in advanced. One final thing, I'm lean and wouldn't hurt putting on some weight. I'm not eating Paleo to drop pounds but to eat an optimal diet so that might flavour some of your responses.


  • #2
    You might not be overeating at all. Tuna and vegetables have a lot of volume but less energy than pasta, soda, etc. Folks who are naturally lean tend to eat more frequently and more carbohydrate so I would be unafraid of potatoes and possibly rice and peas.

    If the appetite is intrusive I would plan proper meal courses, e.g.:
    soup/salad -> protein/starch -> fruit/fat
    Looking forward to that is better than drifting from one snack to the next IMO.

    My peculiar nutrition glossary and shopping list


    • #3
      You should be fine increasing your consumption of healthy foods. I usually drink a cup of coffee with heavy cream to quiet my food cravings, but I've also used sunflower seeds in the past, too. Or try avocado.
      The Age of Strife- My continuing journey to a happier, healthier, more natural lifestyle.


      • #4
        If you're lean and could stand to gain, stuff away.
        F 28/5'4/100 lbs

        "I'm not a psychopath, I'm a high-functioning sociopath; do your research."


        • #5
          Give yourself a break! Your body is hungry because it's looking for carbs. Your body figures that if you shove your face enough, some of that shove stuff will be carbs. Don't give in to carbs! Shove away, but keep it low-carb. Better yet, shove with butter and fatty meat. That will fill you up quickly. When you break the carb addiction, the urge to shovel should fade over a couple weeks.
          5'0" female, 45 years old. Started Primal October 31, 2011, at a skinny fat 111.5 lbs. Low weight: 99.5 lb on a fast. Gained back to 115(!) on SAD chocolate, potato chips, and stress. Currently 111.


          • #6
            Thats probably because you are hungry. Replacing carb heavy items with vegetables or lean protein will likely reduce your calorie intake.
   - Gaming, Food Reviews and Life in Singapore


            • #7
              Basically, if you're hungry and you're eating good food, eat away.

              Don't eat carbs at this time. But eat your fill of meaty goodness.

              Alternatively, I like to exercise my willpower, but only in a limited way. I like to tell myself that I'm going to eat, but after half an hour, or whatever time limit is practical. I do this for a few reasons; 1 - I had problems with willpower in the past and like to feel in control
              2- It's a good chance to exercise your willpower
              3- Hunger is the best sauce!

              You don't have to deny natural hunger, but you can have your steak and eat it too!


              • #8
                Check this out:

                Few but ripe.


                • #9
                  Yeah eat plenty of food and don't go hardcore on the exercise. Also don't go low carb indefinitely, a month long low carb stint is great for reducing your reliance on exogenous glucose.

                  After the month, cycle your carbs. If you can balance out your glucagon and insulin secretion your golden

                  Sent from my iPhone
                  A little primal gem - My Success Story
                  Weight lost in 4 months - 29kg (64 lbs)


                  • #10
                    Thanks for the replies everyone.

                    My calorie intake is definitely not lower since cutting out carbs, I counted it today and it is actually significantly higher when I listen to my "shove my face" urges which I have decided to do while my body gets used to burning fat. I haven't been eating grains for a couple of months (just a bit of rice here and there) so really the main change I have made is removing potatoes and rice which has dropped my carb intake to a very low level. So presumably my body is just getting used to that which I hope happens quickly.

                    Today has been better, I am still really tired, foggy, have difficulty concentrating and am a touch irritable. All symptoms of "carb flu" which aren't ideal as I'm an English teacher so it does make work a bit of a grind. Also I have noticed my level of Italian has dropped from conversational to just coping, again because I can't concentrate. However, I'm not crazing sugar or grains at all. Just food in general. So while it probably isn't the healthiest thing in the world I've allowed myself to be an eating machine and I'll start worrying about portions and overall calories once my brain fog has lifted. For example, earlier I nipped into the supermarket next to work and there was a small tub of (locally produced) mascarpone on special for €0.99 which I ate with my daily banana. That alone was in excess of a thousand calories (and 100g of fat) so I'm definitely not shying away from the fat. By the way mascarpone tastes AWESOME with sliced banana but I'd suggest about 100g not the 250g I ate today. With some nuts and coconut flakes it would make a pretty great high fat snack.

                    Anyway, I guess I'll just plow on and wait until I get over the initial symptoms of needing to digest the fat better.

                    I'm not exercising beyond cycling to and from work, after I've become fat adapted I'll probably look into carb loading days.


                    • #11
                      I had this happen a few days ago as well since starting this Paleo and really cutting under 30g of carb a day for the last week. I ended up eating a handful of Almonds and that helped alot. I also for information purposes track the food through Paleotrack food journal. I looked at a Banana and I put it back after seeing how many carbs and thats it was in it. A nut to me is a better option. The site also breaks down Micro nutrients along with fats, carb, protein, Omega 3 and 6. Its a good start to understand what your eating.

                      Also having trouble getting a good nights sleep. Read a few things but a few Hard boiled eggs an hour before sleep gave me a good night and also the night I did a 16/8 fast. Any suggestions on that when eating Low carb Paleo/Primal?


                      • #12
                        ZugZug, at the moment I'm not trying to go as low as 30g a day (although some days I probably will) and a banana has around 26g of carbs so it isn't going to tip me over. In the future, when I stabilise at this level, I may try to go into nutritional ketosis for a while and that will mean no bananas but for now I'm happy enough. I eat nuts as well but they don't really do anything to lift my brain fog. A banana will get me through the lessons I have to teach, nuts don't at the moment.

                        I should add that day one (Monday) of dropping most of my carbs I felt good and it is only yesterday and today I have felt shocking presumably because I used up all my glycogen and my body isn't fat adapted yet.


                        • #13
                          Hey LiamT

                          Your plan from a few posts up sounds good. Yep don't concern your self with calories or intense exercise while your body is learning how to partition nutrients (fat adapted)

                          You could even raise your carbs to around 50g or even a little more and see no real difference in progression.

                          Sent from my iPhone
                          A little primal gem - My Success Story
                          Weight lost in 4 months - 29kg (64 lbs)


                          • #14
                            That banana is a huge problem. High carbs, high GI, and high fructose. Low carb is sooo much easier if you stay strict until you heal your insulin and leptin signaling. Two or three strawberries is a much better choice if you NEED some sugar.


                            • #15
                              Dilberryhoundog, exercise would be pretty tough for me at the moment while transitioning into burning fat and I'm not going to make it more difficult than it already is. Thank you for the words of encouragement. Today I've woken up feeling good and I'll probably post later after my day. Again I'm expecting my energy to slump around midday like the past two days but we'll see.

                              Greg Rx I disagree about the banana. Yes, it is the highest source of carbs in my diet at around 26g but it is the only thing that gets me through what I need to do while in carb flu. I tried a few berries and it does nothing at all and unless I want to quit my job then I need a slightly more substantial boost when I flump at midday. Also a banana doesn't pull me out of brain fog anyone it just makes things manageable for a couple of hours. My daily intake of carbs is still below 100g including the banana so I don't see it as an issue at all and it doesn't feel like it is making any difference to the process, I'm still in low carb flu.

                              Anyway it seems Mark backs me up on that to a certain extent as well:

                              "Bananas are food, they’re actually quite low in fructose and richer in glucose, and they taste good. Sure, they’re high in carbs, but that just means you probably don’t want to create a diet entirely made of bananas. However many carbs you’re eating, you can probably sneak in a banana without going over."

                              Strawberries at this time of year also cost a fortune and taste rubbish. The only other fruit I can reasonably afford are apples.
                              Last edited by LiamT; 09-25-2013, 10:03 PM.