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How Do You Know If You’re Really Hungry? And Ways To Avoid Eating If You’re Not #greatstarts

I used to have a bad habit of eating something because I “thought” I was hungry. Like if I was at a party and there was food, I ate. I mean the hostess paid money to provide all this food and I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. Right? Wrong. I’ve worked hard at showing my son a healthy example of how to eat and snack only when I’m really hungry to help him avoid overeating and unhealthy snacking. We start our days off with a healthy breakfast, then lunch and dinner. Then we ask ourselves these questions if we feel hungry between meals…

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Am I really hungry or just bored?

I think most people can relate to this one. I’ve found that if I get up and do something, I’ll forget about food and get lost in what ever I’m doing, whether it’s reading a good book, working in the garden, or playing a game with my family, etc.

Children are notorious to say, “I’m bored”. When my son says he’s bored, I give him something to do. This usually will suffice his need to snack.

Am I really hungry or just thirsty?

I find that I don’t necessarily drink as much water in the colder months like I should. Because I’m not hot, I don’t tend to think I’m thirsty, but that I’m hungry. I always drink at least 8oz of water and wait approximately 15 minutes to see if I still feel hungry.

I also make sure that my son gets plenty of water. He had a tendency to snack while he did his homework, so now he sips on water while he does it, and usually he doesn’t want a snack anymore.

Have I been active for 60 minutes today?

I’m counting calories. I know how many calories I can have each day (without exercise), so if I want to eat more than my allotted calories, I have to get in an hour of exercise. I’ve been known to turn on some music and literally dance around my house for an hour. And more often than not, if I exercise for an hour, I don’t want to negate my hard work by eating.

If I do still feel hungry, I’ll fix a bowl of my favorite cereal, Kellogg’s Frosted Mini-Wheats, for a snack.

Do I want to eat just because it’s there?

I am guilty of “mindless” eating. The one cookie leads to a second, third, or a whole box of cookies. I may chew a stick of sugar-free gum, instead. I also grew up with the mentality to clean my plate, or if I’m at a restaurant – I paid for it, so I should get my money’s worth.

Now I always box half for either dinner, or for lunch the next day. Plus I save money by getting two meals out of it.

Do I want to eat just because of where I am?

This was one of the hardest ones for me. My husband and I love going to the movies (before we had our son, we’ve gone to 2 movies in one day before) and I thought I HAD to have popcorn.  It’s been over 3 years since I’ve had popcorn at the movies. I do take gum or mints/hard candy to pop in my mouth just as the movie starts.

If I can avoid movie popcorn, anybody can.

How do you know if you’re really hungry? And do you avoid eating if you’re not?


Kellogg’s® believes that From Great Starts Come Great Things®. So we’re helping Moms start every day with a tip from the top athletes of Team Kellogg’s™ and Team USA dietitians. The thirty days leading up to the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games will each feature fun pieces of advice to help families fuel just like the athletes of Team Kellogg’s. To see all 30 tips, visit

Compensation was provided by Kellogg’s via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Kellogg’s.

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