5 Top Tips for Avoiding Hanger [Getting angry or irritable as a result of hunger]

The word hangry has recently been added to the Oxford English Dictionary, I’ve certainly been hangry and so now I take steps to avoid it.

The science behind this can be attributed to poorly managed blood sugar balancing. When our blood sugar level drops the body releases stress hormones including cortisol. This can cause the anger or emotions in hungry people. If you’re suffering from stress or have a lot of 'life load' then each time you're getting hungry you're therefore adding more stress to your system.

When you get up in the morning your blood sugar levels will be low. The food choices you make could effect the whole day, and then the choices throughout the day also have an effect. Something sugary or refined causes the blood sugar levels to increase highly, the pancreas releases insulin to pack the excess sugar away. The consequence of this is a blood sugar dip, and the potential effects of hanger, emotions and lack of stress resilience. This same up and down effect can happen all day long, like a sugar rollercoaster.

Because I’m about personalised nutrition I’m suggesting that if you get hangry, or someone tells you that you do then you try these tips out.

If it doesn't apply to you then perhaps you've already got your blood sugar well balanced, you haven't noticed how food effects you, or you're genetically predisposed to not need to eat like this; maybe you manage carbohydrates well (see my earlier blog on genetics).

1) Eat some protein with each of your meals. Protein sources include eggs, dairy, fish, poultry, meat, soya, beans, nuts and pulses.

2) Avoid gaps of more than 3 hours without food, many of my clients benefit from 3 main meals and 2 small protein based snacks.

3) Choose wholemeal carbohydrates (wholemeal rice and quinoa) in place of refined carbohydrates (white bread, rice and pasta).

4) Choose fruits and vegetables that have a low glycemic load (GL), for example include berries, apple, broccoli and green leafy vegetables in your diet

5) If you’re eating out then have a mini meal before you leave the house, have a small palmful of nuts of seeds, some nut butter on an oatcake or a small pot of natural yoghurt.

Try it for a week and see what effect it has.

For nutritional consultations, articles and consultancy please contact me via the Contact Page.

Joanne Hart, Registered Nutritional Therapist (mBANT, CNHC), BSc (Hons).

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