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Ignore Hunger Waves While Fasting

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 08/31/2023

Fasting can increase your motivation to exercise—find out why!

DATA: https://joe.bioscientifica.com/view/journals/joe/244/1/JOE-19-0213.xml


0:00 Fasting spikes motivation to exercise

0:10 Hunger waves

1:14 Cravings vs. hunger

2:06 Ghrelin and exercise motivation

2:50 How to bulletproof your immune system

In this video, we’re going to talk about some benefits of fasting for your motivation to exercise.

First, I want to talk about hunger waves. Hunger waves are surges of hunger throughout the day. When you ignore a hunger wave, it will go away.

Hunger waves are caused by an increase in the hormone ghrelin. Ghrelin tells your brain that it’s time to eat. However, you don’t need to eat every time you feel hungry.

If it’s around lunchtime and you feel hungry, you can often ignore your hunger for a couple of hours, and you’ll stop being hungry. Knowing about these waves of hunger can help you better prepare for your intermittent fasting plan.

Over time, hunger waves will start to reduce, and it will become easier and easier to do intermittent fasting.

It’s important to differentiate between the sensation of hunger (cravings) and real hunger. If you start feeling irritable, light-headed, weak, or dizzy, then you need to eat because your body is hungry. An increase in ghrelin is not real hunger.

Keep in mind that fasting will help decrease your hunger. You’ll also find that you consume less food when you break your fast.

When you eat, you spike insulin, which makes you hungry again shortly after. A study on mice showed an increase in motivation to exercise when they were hungry. I’ve seen this same effect in humans too.

So if you experience a spike in ghrelin while fasting, ignore the hunger signals but don’t ignore the motivation to exercise.

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