In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “why do I still feel hungry after eating?”. We will discuss the health condition that makes you feel hungry even after eating.
Why do I still feel hungry after eating?
Polyphagia is a condition in which the person always has the urge to eat more and is always hungry even after eating a meal. Polyphagia can be caused by either physiological disorders or medical conditions.
The complex interactions between endocrine, digestive, and neurologic systems regulate hunger and appetite where each system sends chemical signals to the brain to determine if the body needs more calories or food.
There are many reasons that can make a person feel hungry even after a meal. These can be medical conditions or physiological or behavioural.
Consuming refined carbs
Refined carbs such as white flour and the products made with it like bread and cookies are digested by the body rather quickly because they have fewer fibres, vitamins, and minerals in them.
This is the main reason why you feel hungry even after eating a good meal with lots of refined carbs.
Not enough protein
If there is not much protein either plant-based or animal-based in your diet you will definitely feel hungry even after eating as proteins increase the production of hormones that signal fullness and reduce the level of hormones that stimulate hunger.
Lack of sleep is also another cause for a person to feel hungry all the time. Adequate sleep stimulates a hormone called ghrelin which is an appetite-stimulating hormone. Lack of sleep equals higher levels of ghrelin levels, which means feeling hungry even after eating.
Breastfeeding women need more calories to produce milk to feed their babies which increases their appetite and may feel hungry more often.
During menopause, there is a decline in a hormone called estrogen which leads to an increase in appetite.
Bad eating habit
Whether you are distracted while eating or are a fast eater, you will always feel hungry as there is no conscious eating happening. The brain and the body do not know the quantity of food being eaten so the hormones confuse the brain with hunger.
Too much exercising
Exercising generally burns a lot of calories and can make a person feel hungry quicker. Especially if you are into athletic sports and are a heavy gym goer then you would need to intake a lot of protein and fibre to keep up with the calories needed to exercise.
If the body is not getting enough protein and fibres, you will always feel hungry to fulfil the calorie needed.
Even though alcohol consumption has no direct link to being hungry all the time but is well known for its appetite-stimulating effect. Drinking alcohol affects the person’s ability to think and judge so the person can feel hungry while drinking even if they just had a meal.
Liquid meal replacements
Some people intake their fibres and calories in liquid forms such as smoothies, protein shakes, meal replacement drinks, and soups. The liquid moves in the digestive tract rather faster than the solid which makes the person feel hungry in lesser time.
It is best to incorporate solid food into the diet to stay fuller for longer.
Stress and depression
When a person is stressed or depressed, an increase in the levels of a hormone called cortisol occurs which is responsible for promoting hunger and food cravings. Due to this, you may always feel hungry if you are stressed.
Some people can confuse boredom for hunger and feel the urge to eat or snack on something all the time to keep themselves occupied.
Certain medications can increase the appetite of the person taking them as a side effect. The most common medications include antipsychotics, such as clozapine and olanzapine, and also include antidepressants, mood stabilisers, corticosteroids, and anti-seizure medications which induce hunger.
The thyroid is a small gland located in the front of the neck which is responsible for the production of the hormones that control metabolism and how the body uses energy.
Hyperthyroidism is a condition where the thyroid gland is overactive and increases metabolism causing the person to feel more hungry even after eating.
It is a condition in which the glucose level in the body drops to low levels as the glucose stays in the blood instead of going into cells. Glucose in the cells is what gives us energy and if there is low sugar in the cells, the body craves more sugar and makes the person feel hungry.
In this brief guide, we answered the query, “why do I feel hungry after eating?”. We also discussed the health condition that makes you feel hungry even after eating.
I hope you find this blog useful. If you have any questions, please let us know.