You went to bed too late
Skimp on sleep and you mess with your hunger hormones: ghrelin surges, leaving you feeling hungry, and leptin (which helps you feel full) sinks. Sleep loss also appears to boost blood levels of a chemical that makes eating more pleasurable—similar, believe it or not, to the effects of marijuana, according to a small, recent study from the University of Chicago. Participants who slept only about four hours at night (instead of a healthier 7.5 hours) couldn’t resist what the researchers called “highly palatable, rewarding snacks”—foods fit for the munchies, like cookies, candy, and chips—even though they had a big meal two hours before. Your goal, starting tonight: seven to nine hours of shut-eye. These tricks can even help you lose weight while you sleep.
You opt for the short stack instead of the omelet.
And almost every time, not long enough after your last syrup-slathered bite, your stomach is grumbling and you’re left wondering how that’s even possible. Oh, but it is: Researchers at the University of Missouri found women who ate a high-protein sausage and egg breakfast felt less hungry and more full throughout the morning, and even ate fewer calories at lunch, compared to women who had a low-protein plate of pancakes and syrup in the morning, or skipped breakfast altogether. And speaking of bypassing breakfast, try not to: in another study using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), results showed eating a healthy breakfast, especially one high in protein, reduced brain signals controlling food motivation and reward-driven eating behavior, compared to breakfast-skippers. “Protein can fight off cravings and increase satiety at meals,” says Angela Ginn-Meadow, RD, LDN, CDE, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Get some high-protein breakfast ideas here.