#nzgirlhacks: 5 Ways To Stop Hanger In Its Tracks

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Let’s be honest, being hangry is life-limiting in the extreme.

Recent example: Last Thursday, I went straight from working, to putting on some fancy threads, going straight to a show (met at 6pm, show started at 6.30pm), out of the show at 9pm by which time I was HAN-GRY. Of course my friends were just chilling, chatting to the producer and the crew… as I simmered in my anger working out whether eating the door was going to be acceptable behaviour.

I was close to tears, and NO ONE UNDERSTOOD, so I stomped off in search of a kebab… or burger… or a fossick through a Queen St rubbish bin. Anything!

That’s hanger in action, and it’s not pretty!

What’s Your Best Defence Against Hanger?

To catch you up, the accepted definition of hangry is this:

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So what’s the very best food type to fill up on when you’re hungry? Protein. But unless you have a slab of beef in your pocket, or a lump of tofu, nuts are easily the best mobile food source you could possibly want. Protein – like nuts – keep your blood sugar levels in balance, because when they’re out of whack, you’re prone to side effects such as dizziness, headaches, the inability to concentrate, mood swings, and sometimes even confusion, the shakes and blurred vision. And you have to take this seriously if you’re about to jump into a car.

Foods like sugars, starches and refined carbohydrates – think bagels, crackers, rice crackers, sweets, chips, some breads, biscuits – will add to the feelings of hunger, and hanger may follow. But there is loads you can do to prevent hanger before it comes a-knocking. So here goes…

The New Nutters In Town

There’s a new nut range in town and it’s Nutters nuts with eight epic and scrummilicious variants to suit every hangry challenge – from just nuts, to fruit and nuts, all the way through to nuts with choccie. PLUS from Monday 12 June, the Nutters crew have partnered with Countdown in a two week promotion to get you nuts about Nutters. Stock up and stop hanger in its tracks every day of the week!

We’ve tried the whole range, so here’s our hot tips with some of our faves to get you really, really, really excited…

Stop The Hanger Before The Hanger Gets YOU!

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1. Eat breakfast

Yep, I know, you’ve heard it before. But seriously, every clued-up dietitian, nutritionist, doctor – even your mum – agrees that ending the nightly fast with a healthy brekkie is a huge boost to your metabolism, energy levels, moods, ability to concentrate and make good decisions, helps with exercise goals, and even diet and weight goals, plus keeps your hormones in balance. In fact, continuing to fast into the day (bearing in mind you may not have eaten since around 8pm the night before) may even signal to your body to store fat.

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Research suggests that breakfast eaters are leaner than those who skip the morning meal, with one study reporting that missing breakfast was associated with a fourfold increase in the risk of obesity.

Harvard Medical School

HOT TIP: Kick those high-sugar cereals to the kerb and replace them with a delicious, nourishing porridge fuelled with nuts, seeds and a few berries instead of sugar. The Nutters Cranberry-Nut Crash with its almonds, cashews and sliced cranberries is the bomb for this.

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2. Feed the snack attack

Snacking is not a dirty word, so get that out of your head right now. Snacking is in fact the ideal fix-it to reducing all hanger in your life. Portion control is king here. You actually only need a few nuts to keep the hunger at bay and keep your body happy. Nuts contain not only healthy fats but because they take longer for your body to digest, you’ll feel fuller for longer.

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HOT TIP: Portion out a bag of nuts into what you need per day, which is about 30g per snacking moment, and just take that into work, in the car, or on the go wherever you are. So this is around 20 almonds or 15 cashews, as a guide. AND don’t be hard on yourself if you do want some chocolate in the mix. Again, it’s all about portion control! Try Nutters Bare-All Almonds or dip into a little indulgence with Nutters Chocoholic Chomp or More-ish Munch with yoghurt coated cranberries.

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3. Reach for real food

Aaaah, the morning tea donut/slice/brownie/cake. And the arvo tuck into chips and lollies. Just don’t do it. These are “empty calories” and will deplete your body rather than refuel it. A.k.a you’ll be paying for it later! Stick to the 80/20 rule: treat your body like a goddess 80% of the time and throw out the rule book 20% of the time, and maybe call that the weekend.

Refined, nutrient-depleted food like chips, chocolate and lollies do nothing good in your body. Sugar has not one single good property. And well, deep fried potato…  fab with a Friday glass of wine, but if you have stuff to do, your brain needs actual food. In fact, aside from that sugar/salt craving fix, these food nasties will make you feel sluggish, listless and even more hungry. So you’ll be reaching for more food to fill the hangry gap soon anyway.

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Nuts are also a good source of dietary fibre and provide a wide range of essential nutrients, including several B group vitamins (including folate), vitamin E, minerals such as calcium, iron, zinc, potassium and magnesium, antioxidant minerals (selenium, manganese and copper), plus other phytochemicals such as antioxidant compounds (flavonoids and resveratrol) and plant sterols.

Nutrition Australia

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HOT TIP: Grab for the nuts at snack o’clock. These Nutters Mus-Tachios are just divine! Your snack time will never be the same again!!

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4. Avoid artificial sweeteners

The best thing you can do for your body as far as those sweet cravings go, is eliminate the need for sugar altogether. Weaning yourself off sugar is actually not hard to do. In fact, now’s the time to jump on the end of Junk Free June and try it for the rest of the month and see how you go. Just 10 days without sugar will help retrain not only your taste buds but also your brain. And you might even raise some money for cancer research.

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As for artificial sugar? Stay away! These sugars made in a laboratory merely perpetuate your sweet tooth and therefore the food cravings. Artificial sugars interfere with your body’s hunger and satisfaction signals in your brain so do more bad in your body than sugar. Plus, I reckon if you can’t say it, don’t ingest it!

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HOT TIP: If you’re wanting a sneaky sugar hit, go for some dried fruit. The Nutters packs have included just the right amount with roasted cashews and almonds. Oh, and cashews, which contain high levels of magnesium and vitamin B6, have the added known benefit of stabilising moods. The Nutters Cranberry-Nut Crash will hit the sweet spot, and the Crusin’ Cashews, Nutty Deluxe and Bare-All Almonds will hit every spot!

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5. Get loads of quality sleep

Researches have discovered that a tired brain can give you the munchies. Really. And the food cravings will have you reaching for the high sugar, bad fats and starchy snacks. In other words, stuff that’ll more than likely make you very hangry later when you crash.

We found that sleep restriction boosts a signal that may increase the hedonic aspect of food intake, the pleasure and satisfaction gained from eating. Sleep restriction seems to augment the endocannabinoid system, the same system targeted by the active ingredient of marijuana, to enhance the desire for food intake.

Erin Hanlon, PhD, journal of Sleep

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Plus, bad eating can negatively impact sleep patterns. Medical News Today goes so far as to say just one day of bad eating can negatively affect your sleep. So talk about creating a never ending cycle of hangry.

HOT TIP: Improve sleep, replace the crap foods, and lessen those pesky hunger cravings by eating nuts. Walnuts contain the highest level of tryptophan – the key ingredient that makes serotonin (the neurotransmitter believed to regulate anxiety, happiness and moods) – more than any other nut, plus contain melatonin (the hormone that helps control your sleep and wake cycles). Grab a bag of Nutters Off-The-Wall-Nuts and put them to the better sleep test!

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Nutters nuts are power packed and delicious. Plus, the Nutters crew promise loads of fun ahead, so stay tuned to the Nutters’ Facebook page here. Now go grab your Nutters nuts today for the ultimate taste test: Yours! Available at your nearest Countdown supermarket in store, or online here.

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Thanks to the crew at Nutters for making this post possible!

 

#nzgirlhacks

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Belinda has a thirst for life that just won’t quit. She’s crazy in love with writing and discovering new things to share, from fashion, beauty, style, to food, lifestyle and #nzgirlhacks.