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True and False Hunger. What’s the Difference? by Frederic Patenaude
You know about the dangers of processed foods.
You’ve heard plenty about GMOs, organic foods, vaccines, and many other health controversies.
Health experts will tell you to avoid meat or grains, depending on their belief.
You’ve heard about juicing, green smoothies, detox diets, fasting, and more.
But there’s one principle that nobody talks about. My first mentor Albert Mosseri used to say that it’s the most important one.
Is it emotions?
Is it meditation?
Is it food combining?
None of the above.
This principle is so important because even if you eat a conventional diet, you can use it to significantly improve your health and extend your life.
It’s a principle that allows you to get back in touch with your instincts and let your body decide what’s best for you.
It’s not easy to master at first, but once you practice it, it will become second nature.
What’s this health principle?
Nobody talks about hunger. In fact, we get told to avoid hunger and eat three square meals a day. “Never skip breakfast,” they say!
When I say “hunger” I don’t mean starvation.
I also don’t mean the sensations that most people mistake for hunger.
You see, there’s a difference between “true hunger” and “false hunger.”
True hunger is when your body really needs food and is most able to digest and assimilate it.
False hunger is your appetite. It’s when food looks or smell good, or when you eat out of habit, or to avoid the symptoms of detox.
The Signs of False Hunger
You can recognize false hunger by paying attention to how you feel. Here are the sensations:
Bad, dry, pasty mouth
Feeling depressed, foggy mind
Tightness in stomach
Hunger vanishing with time
Desiring a specific food
True hunger is different. It’s a pleasant sensation. It’s a demand for food.
True Hunger Symptoms
Sharp and happy?
Hunger persisting over time?
When you experience true hunger, you are content with natural food. A simple salad or a bowl of fruit sounds like a great treat.
When you experience false hunger, you want something specific. “I feel like a burger or ice cream.”
With true hunger, you actually feel good.
With false hunger, you feel some discomfort: stomach gurgling, feeling tired, headaches.
False hunger disappears if you want. Wait an hour, and suddenly you’re not so hungry anymore.
True hunger gets stronger with time, and the more you wait, the more you’ll get hungry.
As an experiment to recognize true hunger, you might try skipping breakfast.
If you’re not used to it, you’ll feel “hungry” at around 10 or 11 a.m., and might experience some of the symptoms of false hunger I described.
If you wait, your “hunger” will pass. Most people will only get truly hungry at around noon or even 1 or 2 p.m.
In reality, false hunger is a sign of habituation. Some could say addiction. Your body is used to getting the same amount of food at the same times.
Your body is not even done processing your previous meal that you’re already on to the next. The body gets used to this, and demands food out of habit.
If you break the cycle, you’ll start being more in touch with your true needs.
However, I suggest being careful when trying out this principle. Some people should eat right away if they feel weak.
The program ”One Year of Raw Foods” features complete menu planners for every day of the year, and more resources to make this diet work.
This program features exactly what to eat, day by day, based on seasonal ingredients (no mangoes in January!), and a complete shopping list to help with your errands.
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