Diabetes Hunger And Food Cravings
Surveys find that nearly 100% of young women and almost 70% of young men sometimes have food cravings. For most people, cravings at worst add a little weight. With diabetes, they can be a serious problem. Food cravings might cause you to eat way too much of things that spike your sugars. What are food cravings, though? Where do they come from, and how can we deal with them in a healthy way? Let’s divide cravings into two types: physical hunger and emotional distress. It’s normal to feel strong hunger if blood sugar is low, or if your stomach is too empty. Then you really need to eat. If your sugar is low, you might need some carbs; if you just feel empty, some high-fiber vegetables or water might be preferable. Diabetes can cause hunger if glucose is not getting into the cells where it’s needed. Other medical causes of excess hunger include thyroid problems (such as Graves’ disease,) pregnancy, cannabis smoking, and depression. To avoid the cravings of low sugar or empty stomach, remember to eat regularly, especially breakfast. Breakfast with protein should keep cravings away at least until the afternoon. Eating may not stop some people’s low-sugar hunger. If that happens to you, you may need insulin, an insulin-sensitizing medication, or an herb such as bitter melon to get glucose into your cells. Food cravings are not always physical, though. In addition to body hunger and stomach hunger, there is what psychologist William Polonsky, PhD, CDE, calls mouth hunger or eyeball hunger. “While your stomach may be satisfied,” says Dr. Polonsky, “your eyeballs, mouth, and brain may still feel famished. If your meal plan is too limiting [in terms of food types], you may be depriving yourself of the joy of eating and the sense of satisfaction your mind and body c Continue reading >>
Why Am I Constantly Hungry (with Diabetes)?
Yahoo!-ABC News Network | 2018 ABC News Internet Ventures. All rights reserved. Why Am I Constantly Hungry (With Diabetes)? Question: Why am I constantly hungry (with diabetes)? Answer: Sometimes people do express feeling hungry all the time. There are a number of things that could be at play. Hunger and satiety, which means your sense of being full or satiated, can occur for a variety of reasons. We have places in the brain that control our feelings of fullness and satiety. And there may be some issues going on with the kinds of signals that you're getting to that part of the brain that may make you feel as if you're hungry all the time. Sometimes you may need to really ask yourself: are you really feeling hungry? Or is it you're feeling bored, or you're feeling discontent in some other place in life? It's not unusual for people to comfort with food and to meet other concerns in their life through their food, so it's important to really think about whether you're really hungry or not. If you are feeling hungry, then you want to take a look at your meal plan. Think about: are you getting enough food? Are you getting it spaced throughout the day properly? And if your answer is 'yes' to those questions, then you might want to think about some lower-calorie snack foods that you can have. Again, I would encourage you to look at the vegetable arena in particular and maybe some fruit as well. Lots of great crunchy snack foods like celery and carrots and cucumbers and squashes, which you can cut up and use, that oftentimes can help you feel a little more satiated and be able to have that crunchy feeling that often gives you satisfaction with eating. So think about it, are you really hungry? Are there reasons that your meal plan is not working for you? Start there first. If th Continue reading >>
Dealing With Hunger
My friend James usually manages his Type 2 diabetes quite well. He eats right, exercises, and all that good stuff. But last week, something went wrong. He had a tough Thursday at his job, worked through lunch, and got yelled at by his supervisor. Trying to fix things up, he stayed late doing paperwork and dragged himself home, looking forward to dinner and a quiet evening with his wife, Ellen. But when he got there, Ellen had gone to a program at their daughter’s school. Dinner wasn’t ready. He went to the freezer and grabbed a box of ice cream. You can imagine the rest of the story. James kept splurging, and his blood glucose levels were out of whack for three days, courtesy of what Alcoholics Anonymous founder Bill W. called H.A.L.T. (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired). Bill W. knew that these were four danger situations for drinking. They apply with equal force to smoking, breaking your diet, or almost any other bad habit we are trying to change. Psychologist and diabetes educator William Polonsky says people who struggle with their diabetes “frequently blame themselves for not having enough willpower. But most people have plenty of willpower. The problem is not understanding and solving the particular problems that interfere with self-care.” Hunger is one of the most common problems. How can we deal with it? Avoiding Hunger James moved into the danger zone when he skipped lunch. “I had so much work,” he said, “and I knew the boss wasn’t happy with me. My stomach was all knotted. I didn’t feel like eating.” Those things happen, but skipping meals, especially breakfast, will lead you to grab concentrated comfort foods like sweets and fats. It will also make you grouchy and miserable. What could James have done differently? If he didn’t have time or sp Continue reading >>
Hungry All The Time?
If you feel like you're constantly hungry, you might be confusing hunger with appetite. Hunger is a physiological response to the lack of food, and appetite is the desire to eat. Many things can trigger the desire to eat — even when you've just eaten. You can become easily conditioned to think of the desire to eat as hunger. If you find yourself feeling hungry but fairly picky about what you want to eat, ask yourself if it is truly hunger that you are feeling. If you go on a very-low-calorie diet of less than 1,000 calories each day, you will feel very hungry much of the time. It is better for you to eat more calories each day — say 1,200 to 1,500 — for a slower but longer-term weight loss. In the long run, severely restricting calories can backfire, leaving you feeling constantly hungry and constantly wanting to eat. And no matter how much you cut back while you're on the diet, you can't eat so little forever. You'll eventually need to learn to eat at a higher calorie level to maintain your weight. Work with the nutritionist on your care team to find the right caloric intake that will allow you to lose one to two pounds per week — unless your doctor wants you to do it faster. The slow and steady approach has been shown to lead to better results over the years. Continue reading >>
If I Am Always Hungry, Could It Be Diabetes?
If I am always hungry, could it be diabetes? Your body turns the sugar in food into fuel called glucose, but when you have diabetes, glucose can't reach your cells. Your body pees it out instead and tells you to eat more. People who have Type 1 diabetes, in particular, may take in large amounts of food and still lose weight. Aldrich, N. , May-June 2013. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology: "Antihistamines and Weight Gain." American Academy of Family Physicians: "Eating During Pregnancy." American Diabetes Association: "Diabetes Symptoms." American Sleep Association: "Sleep Deprivation -- What is Sleep Deprivation?" Chambers, L. , February 2015. Trends in Food Science and Technology Coffin, C. , April 2006. Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "Emotional Eating: Causes, Prevention, Treatment and Resources." Harvard Health Publications: "Why stress causes people to overeat," "Could it be my thyroid?" Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health: "Artificial Sweeteners," "Fiber," "Sleep: Waking Up to Sleep's Role in Weight Control," "Carbohydrates." Mayo Clinic: "Diabetes symptoms: When diabetes symptoms are a concern," "Stress Management," "Depression (major depressive episode)," "Hypoglycemia." University of Chicago Medicine & Biological Sciences/Science Life: "Sleep loss boosts hunger and unhealthy food choices." UC San Diego Health: "Wide Effect: Drugs That Promote Weight Gain." University of Rochester Medical Center: "When Your Weight Gain Is Caused By Medicine." Van Den Eeden, S. , October 1994. Neurology Yang, Q. , June 2010. Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine Reviewed by William Blahd on June 15, 2017 Continue reading >>
How To Use A Hunger Scale | Joslin Diabetes Center
How to Deal with Hunger by Using a Hunger Scale A common complaint among people who are watching their weight is, I always feel hungry! Yet many people think they are hungry when actually, they may be feeling bored, sad, stressed, excited or scared. Its normal to occasionally eat when we arent really hungry. But some people have a harder time controlling their eating, especially when they eat to try and feel better after getting upset or being nervous. People who eat in response to feelings or emotions may have a hard time stopping, and end up overeating. Some people eat in response to physical cues, such as seeing an ad on television for a juicy fast-food burger or driving past a bakery and smelling freshly baked bread. And if you have diabetes, you may have been told to eat your meals at about the same time every day, whether you want to or not. Its not surprising, then, that a lot of people dont even know what physical hunger feels like because theyre used to eating for other reasons. To help you gain better control of your eating and to lessen the chances of what is called mindless eating, try using the Hunger Scale. Heres how it works: On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being ravenous and 10 being stuffed, rank your hunger right before you start to eat. Halfway through your meal, rank your hunger again using the same scale of 1 to 10. If youre at a 5, 6 or 7 put your fork down and stop eating. If you decide to keep eating, finish your meal and rank your hunger. Be honest with yourself, too. If you feel like youve just eaten Thanksgiving dinner but have a huge bowl of ice cream in front of you, chances are youre eating to help deal with some kind of emotion. Get in the habit of using the hunger scale on a regular basis. You can learn a lot about yourself with this handy Continue reading >>
Type 2 Diabetes Symptoms
The symptoms of type 2 diabetes (also called type 2 diabetes mellitus) develop gradually—so gradually, in fact, that it’s possible to miss them or to not connect them as related symptoms. Some people are actually surprised when they are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes because they’ve gone to the doctor for something else (eg, fatigue or increased urination). The symptoms develop gradually because, if you have the insulin resistant form of type 2, it takes time for the effects of insulin resistance to show up. Your body doesn’t become insulin resistant (unable to use insulin properly) overnight, as you can learn about in the article on causes of type 2 diabetes. If you’re not insulin resistant—and instead your body doesn’t produce enough insulin to process glucose well—the symptoms also develop gradually. Your body will be able to “make do” with lower insulin levels for awhile, but eventually, you will start to notice the following symptoms. Here are some of the common symptoms of type 2 diabetes: Fatigue: Your body isn’t getting the energy it needs from the food you’re eating, so you may feel very tired. Extreme thirst: No matter how much you drink, it feels like you’re still dehydrated. Your tissues (such as your muscles) are, in fact, dehydrated when there’s too much glucose (sugar) in your blood. Your body pulls fluid from the tissues to try to dilute the blood and counteract the high glucose, so your tissues will be dehydrated and send the message that you need to drink more. This is also associated with increased urination. Frequent urination: This is related to drinking so much more in an attempt to satisfy your thirst. Since you’re drinking more, you’ll have to urinate more. Additionally, the body will try to get rid of the excess g Continue reading >>
Should I Eat If I'm Not Hungry?
I have been a diabetic for over 40 years and have been on the insulin pump. I am not hungry for the most part all day long, and sometimes a week at a time. My A1C is 6.1 and my endocrinologist is very happy with my blood sugars. Should I force myself to eat, whether I am hungry or not? I do not feel weak or anything like that — I'm just not hungry. — Margo, New Hampshire The short answer is yes. You must try to eat for two reasons: to prevent hypoglycemia, and more importantly, to prevent malnutrition. Even though you do not feel weak, your body requires nutrients continuously for its vital functions. I recommend eating small portions frequently and choosing nutrient-dense foods to ensure that you have adequate intake. Work with your doctor or a nutritionist to calculate your caloric needs. I also suggest that, with your doctor’s help, you find the cause of your loss of appetite. Since you say you have had diabetes for 40 years, you might be experiencing gastrointestinal neuropathy, a type of neuropathy that affects the gut and can cause you to feel full. There are several other possible reasons for loss of appetite that should be explored with your doctor. If you have not been sleeping well, have felt down, and have difficulty concentrating, the loss of your appetite might be due to depression. Bring this to your doctor’s attention, as depression is treatable. She will also work with you to investigate other reasons for your loss of appetite. One final note: In those who have had diabetes for a long time, or have had repeated episodes of low blood sugar, the warning signs and symptoms of hypoglycemia can be blunted. In other words, you may not feel its symptoms until your blood sugar dips to a dangerously low level. You should be vigilant about checking your su Continue reading >>
Polyphagia - Increased Appetite
Tweet Polyphagia is the medical term used to describe excessive hunger or increased appetite and is one of the 3 main signs of diabetes. An increase in hunger is usually a response to normal things such as intensive exercise or other strenuous activity, but polyphagia can also be the result of more severe issues such as depression or stress. Also known as hyperphagia, it is one of the three main symptoms of diabetes, along with: Polydipsia (increased thirst) and Polyuria (frequent, excessive urination) Causes of polyphagia Polyphagia can be caused by: Diabetes mellitus Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels) Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar levels) Anxiety Stress Bulimia Binge eating disorder Hyperthyroidism (raised level of thyroid hormone) Premenstrual syndrome Certain prescription drugs such as corticosteroids Some psychiatric conditions Rare medical conditions such as Kleine-Levin Syndrome and Prader-Willi Syndrome Hunger and hyperglycemia In uncontrolled diabetes where blood glucose levels remain abnormally high (hyperglycemia), glucose from the blood cannot enter the cells - due to either a lack of insulin or insulin resistance - so the body can’t convert the food you eat into energy. This lack of energy causes an increase in hunger. Simply eating will not get rid of the hungry feeling of polyphagia in people with uncontrolled diabetes, as this will just add to the already high blood glucose levels. The best way to lower blood glucose levels is to exercise as this can help to stimulate insulin production and reduce blood sugar levels. However, if the hunger persists, you may need to consult your doctor or diabetes health care team. Hunger and hypoglycemia Increased appetite can also be caused by abnormally low blood glucose (hypoglycemia). If blood glucose readings Continue reading >>
Always Hungry? It Could Be Insulin Resistance
Always hungry? It could be insulin resistance Hungry, sluggish and fatigued, no matter what you eat? You might want to read more about insulin resistance, a condition that can ultimately lead to diabetes. Always feeling sluggish, no matter what you eat? You could have insulin resistance. ~ You've eaten your lunch, but 30 minutes later you are hungry again you feel weak and shaky. You make your way down to the vending machine and try to get some energy from a chocolate bar, only to feel sluggish again soon afterwards. You might be blissfully unaware of a condition that can increase your risk for type 2 diabetes . Insulin resistance occurs when the body is unable to absorb and utilise the insulin it produces, resulting in elevated blood glucose levels. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases , insulin is a hormone that is made in the pancreas, an organ located behind the stomach. The role of insulin is to allow cells of the body to absorb glucose to be used as fuel or stored as body fat. When your blood glucose level rises after a meal, insulin is released by the pancreas to help the liver, muscle and fat cells absorb the glucose. Insulin also lowers your blood glucose levels by reducing glucose production in the liver. If you are healthy, your insulin automatically regulates your blood glucose levels. Things go pear-shaped when the cells do not respond properly to insulin and cant absorb glucose from your bloodstream. Your body needs higher levels of insulin to help glucose to be absorbed. As your pancreas tries to keep up with the demand for more insulin, it can start failing, leading to pre-diabetes and, ultimately, type 2 diabetes. Insulin resistance often shows no symptoms, or symptoms can take a while to appear. There are, Continue reading >>
Polyphagia: The Relationship Between Hunger And Diabetes
Is hunger a sign of diabetes? If you don’t have diabetes, could hunger be one of the signs of diabetes? Is being hungry all of the time (polyphagia) a sign that you should go get checked for diabetes? After all, polyphagia is one of the “3 Poly’s,” is part of a triad of symptoms indicating diabetes. In addition to polyphagia, or increased hunger, the symptoms of polyuria and polydipsia are also signs of diabetes. Susan’s story Susan was constantly hunger. She never seemed to feel satisfied as she snacked off and on all day long from increasing hunger pangs. Susan’s hunger had gotten progressively worse over the past year. She noticed that she had been going to the bathroom more frequently, and wasn’t sure if she might be getting a urinary tract infection. Oddly enough, she hadn’t gained any weight. She had even lost a few pounds. She visited her primary care provider, and relayed her symptoms to the nurse. The doctor recommended that Susan be checked for several different conditions, but the one that stuck out in Susan’s mind was diabetes. She had an aunt with diabetes. She remembered how sick she got, and how she’d spend her days in the dialysis unit. Susan didn’t want diabetes, at least the kind that she knew about from her aunt. When Susan contacted TheDiabetesCouncil, she was concerned that she did indeed have diabetes. She was waiting for her test results, but she was eager to find out if hunger was a sure sign that she has diabetes? I suggest reading the following articles: We decided to look into it for Susan. Let’s see what we found. Polyphagia: What is it? With polyphagia, even after having just eaten, you will feel hunger, or find that you have cravings for particular foods that monopolize your thoughts. The definition of polyphagia, wh Continue reading >>
Can Diabetes Cause Excessive Hunger?
Yes. No. Sort of. Well, ok, here’s the deal. The shinbone’s connected to the thighbone, the thighbone’s connected to the…. Diabetes can cause high blood sugar, and high blood sugar can give you the munchies. So diabetes doesn’t, by itself, make you hungry. It’s the high blood sugar that can come from out-of-control diabetes that does. Which is crazy, if you think about it. For the most part, the human body does a really great job of maintaining a stable state using a process of small adjustments and counter-adjustments called homeostasis. In the case of blood sugar, the body normally keeps the sugar level just right by balancing little squirts of insulin from the pancreas with little squirts of sugar from the liver. If the liver is running low on its sugar stores your body will give you an advanced head’s up that you need to refuel by sending out hunger signals. Where things get weird is that if your blood sugar is already high, the last thing you need is more sugar (in the form of food), right? But in fact, high blood sugar does cause hunger, even though you do not need more food. This is caused largely by a miss-communication within the body’s sugar homeostasis system. Every cell in your body relies on sugar from the blood for food, but they need insulin to get to the sugar. It’s insulin that moves sugar from the blood to the cells. If there is not enough insulin, or if it isn’t working very well, sugar piles up in the blood while at the same time, it’s not getting into the cells where it’s needed. Being in a state of high blood sugar is sort of like starving to death in the Chef Boyardee warehouse because you don’t have a can opener. The cells don’t really realize that there is a ton of sugar just beyond their membranes; all they know is t Continue reading >>
Ask Our Cde
Q: Help! I make bad food choices all the time because I am constantly hungry. I'm hungry, I eat and then I'm instantly hungry again. Does this happen to other women? I have Type 2 diabetes for which I take Metformin and Welchol. A: Dear Desperate, What you are experiencing is very common. There are several issues that can cause extreme hunger in Type 2 diabetes. First, you may have high levels of circulating insulin that can be made worse by eating too many carbohydrates or foods with a high glycemic index (foods that convert to sugar quickly). It is important to meet with a dietitian that specializes in diabetes to help you deal with these issues. Secondly there is another physical issue that can make you hungry. Persons with Type 2 diabetes often lack enough of a type of hormone called incretin. Incretin is responsible primarily for controlling after meal blood sugars. It does this by reducing the flow of sugar from the liver after eating, increasing the natural production of insulin when you eat carbohydrate, and slowing digestion. It’s this last function that is of interest. When digestion is slowed, less sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream from the intestines. Slowing digestion also means that more food stays in the stomach for a longer period of time. (Can you see where this is going?) If you lack incretin, food empties from the stomach faster meaning that you can be hungry shortly after finishing a meal! Incretin can be replaced with certain injectable medications called incretin mimetics. In the US there are currently two, Byetta and Victoza. Weight loss is often a side effect of these diabetes medications. Only your doctor can decide if these might be appropriate for you. Isn’t is nice to know that you are not alone and that there might be an answer to t Continue reading >>
Mindful Eating For Prediabetes And Diabetes
Mindful Eating Puts the Self in Self-Management You can eat joyfully and mindfully while managing your diabetes. Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating for Prediabetes and Diabetes is a practical mind-body approach that shifts the focus from rigid nutrition rules and strict exercise regimens to awareness of your beliefs, habits, thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations. Learning to listen to and understand your “inner expert” puts you in charge of your eating and health decisions. The Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program for Prediabetes and Diabetes will help you: Savor every aspect of eating – yes, even with prediabetes or diabetes Eat what you love without guilt or fear of losing control Discover simple yet powerful methods for knowing when, what, and how much to eat without restrictive rules Understand how eating and physical activity affect your blood sugar Learn the basics of nutrition in clear, practical terms Embrace blood-sugar monitoring with an attitude of curiosity instead of fear Decrease your anxiety about diabetes self-management Make exercise a “get to” instead of a “have to” Understand why medications may be an important part of your diabetes care Become proactive at preventing the complications associated with uncontrolled diabetes Develop powerful patterns of thinking so you can live the balanced, vibrant life you crave Thrive with prediabetes or diabetes! Mindful eating can help you manage prediabetes and diabetes! Next steps… Continue reading >>
Diabetes Type 2 Symptoms: Seven Warning Signs Of Blood Sugar Problems
Diabetes type 2 symptoms: Seven warning signs of blood sugar problems DIABETES type 2 symptoms are triggered when the body struggles to control blood sugar levels. This gradually causes signs of the condition to appear, alerting a sufferer to the condition. Watch out for these seven symptoms of diabetes type 2. Diabetes type 2 symptoms are triggered by problems regulating sugar in the blood, often due to problems with the hormone insulin Signs and symptoms of the condition to watch out for include extreme hunger, or polyphagia, and needing to wee more regularly Symptoms of blood sugar problems may also include the appearance of strange, dark marks on the skin Diabetes type 2 symptoms and signs are often sparked in later life, as this is when the condition is more likely to develop. Being overweight, eating a poor diet and not exercising regularly all increase the risk of developing problems with blood sugar levels, which may be diagnosed as diabetes. There are seven early warning symptoms to watch out for, according to medicinal website Healthline. Feeling an intense hunger, or polyphagia, despite eating normally is a warning signal for diabetes, as it suggests sugar from consumed food is not reaching cells. Your body uses the sugar in your blood to feed your cells, wrote experts at Healthline. When the cells cant absorb the sugar, your body looks for more sources of fuel, causing persistent hunger. Diabetes type 2 symptoms: Eating this nut can halve your risk Diabetes type 2 symptoms: Intense hunger could be a warning sign you have the condition Polyphagia-type hunger persists when a sufferer eats food to satisfy it, or starts to eat food more regularly than normal. This feeling can also be raised to simple every day activities, such as exercise or heavy lifting. Diab Continue reading >>