So, one of our class instructors is the author of “The Hunger Within“, and she had us experimenting this week.  This will sound quite familiar to the Becksters out there, but we were to choose a day, and really pay attention to our body’s response to hunger.  We were to try and differentiate true hunger from emotional and psychological hunger and were not allowed to eat until we felt the true physical symptoms of hunger.

Of course, while you are taking note of you feelings, it’s important to note that the one hunger cue you can’t trust is your stomach.  An empty feeling in your stomach?  Not hunger.  Tightness?  Not hunger.  The stomach responds to easily to emotion for it to be a valid gauge of hunger.  Feeling nervous?  You have butterflies in your stomach.  Sad?  Feel that lead weight in your belly?  Angry?  Man, you’ve got a fire in your belly.

It’s emotional.  It responds to mood, and you can’t trust it to tell you if you’re hungry.  What can you trust?   Well, that’s the point of the exercise.  My log went kind of like this:


  • 8:00:00    Stomach Hunger    Habit – Would have eaten breakfast by now
  • 8:30:00    Stomach Hunger    Passing Burger King.  It would be awful tasty, but that’s just emotional desire
  • 8:45:00    Stomach Rumble    Mainly frustrated at traffic at this point.
  • 9:41:00    Stomach feels quite empty    We’re almost 4 hours into the day and I haven’t eaten anything yet.  Not sure if I’m really starting to get hungry or if I’m just fighting habit.   Will go get a nice big glass of water as I haven’t had anything to drink yet.
  • 11:16:00    Distracted    Not as focussed as I should be on things.  No apparant reason.  Thinking about food.  Not sure if it’s real hunger or Monday-ness, though…
  • 11:29:00    acid stomach and fidgety    empty stomach and acids a churning.  Man, do I think with my stomach or what?
  • 12:10:00    definitely feeling blood sugar dip.    Time to eat.  Carrots, celery and hummus.  Yum.  No out of control binging.  Need more water.
  • 14:30:00    Stomach Rumble    Just rushed as I need to get things done rapidly.  Mind playing games
  • 15:00:00    Fine    Post – Workout.  Not hungry, surprisingly, but thirsty.
  • 15:30:00    Thirsty    low-cal gatorade – 50 calories – may be breaking the experiment a bit, but feel the need to re-hydrate fast.
  • 18:30:00    Mind Focussed on food rather than work at hand.    May be dinner habit.  May be the first inkling of hunger.
  • 20:10:00    drained and head-achey    Post-shopping and post house cleaning.  Kinda zoned out on hunger awareness for a while and find myself overly eager for dinner.  Happily, I planned a specific meal and portion, so it’s time to go cook that fish!

So, that’s that.  It’s useful to take time to separate actual hunger from an empty stomach feeling, but like the first time I performed this exercise with Beck, it’s vaguely annoying as you spend the entire day thinking about food.  It’s definitely one of the harder diet days.

Food Intake:

  • Lunch – celery, carrots and hummus
  • Dinner – grilled cod with peppers, onions, mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes.


Heart Chart

I’ve really got to remember to bring a baggy for my iphone to class.  I keep it in my shirt pocket as I exercise, and it gets… moist…