1

votes

How to increase appetite?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created September 16, 2010 at 1:02 AM

Yes, a few years ago I would have wished for it. But here I am trying to gain a little weight, but really struggling with undereating. My blood pressure is too low and I'm exercising more often now so I need to build muscle. So I need to be more ravenous. Any tips?

My diet currently is med-carb. I'm willing to go higher or lower to stimulate my stupid appetite. I notice I get hungrier when eating with other people, but alas I can't do that for every meal.

4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

(22913)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

Is snorkeling High intensity for you?

7df8f3cc7f1475c3ecbbd4a4feb87d04

(514)

on September 17, 2010
at 12:13 PM

This post http://www.mens-total-fitness.com/swimming-weight-loss.html has some links to studies on swimming and caloric intake, though I haven't had time to take a look at them. But there might be something to the idea that being in the water increases appetite because your body temp is lowered.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 17, 2010
at 01:40 AM

Oops, friend works in a different lab. But I found this paper that talks about which fats lead to lack of appetite control. It says PUFA>MUFA>SFA, because of differences in melting point and pH. We eat lots of SFA and very little veggie oils, so maybe that has a (small?) role in why we feel more sated even on high fat diets? http://www.nature.com/oby/journal/v11/n2/full/oby200329a.html

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 17, 2010
at 01:38 AM

The paper is Alfenas 2003: http://www.nature.com/oby/journal/v11/n2/full/oby200329a.html

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 17, 2010
at 01:37 AM

Oops, friend works in a different lab. But I found this paper that talks about which fats lead to more satiety. It says PUFA>MUFA>SFA, because of differences in melting point and pH. We eat lots of SFA and very little veggie oils, so maybe that has a (small?) role in why we feel more sated even on high fat diets?

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 17, 2010
at 01:21 AM

Yeah, I don't understand how that happens, even though it happens a lot. I'm going to ask a friend who works in a fat metabolism lab, and get a straight answer to post.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on September 17, 2010
at 12:44 AM

And personally, I feel so much more satisfaction with a big whack of protein compared to big whacks of fat. For example, downing some coconut milk doesn't really fill me up as nicely as say a tub of cottage cheese or yogurt. Yet I can eat maybe two times the latter for the same number of calories and feel so much fuller and prolly be getting better nutrition across the board compared to the coconut milk.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on September 16, 2010
at 05:18 PM

It's completely bizarre because I eat mostly fat and struggle with over-satiation. There has to be something more at work here.

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on September 16, 2010
at 04:25 PM

Don't you guys think it's the exposure to the water that does it? Or maybe it's having the snorkel thingamajig in your mouth -- the same way chewing on a toothpick can sometimes make you salivate and then feel hungry.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 16, 2010
at 03:28 PM

Eva--studies have shown fat to be the least satiating macronutrient, and protein to be the most. Despite that, I do see your viewpoint--fat qualitatively makes me feel full! Maybe because it comes with protein much of the time.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on September 16, 2010
at 05:14 AM

One thing that makes me sooooo hungry is swimming, especially snorkeling. I am ravenous after a short snorkle trip and even worse after a long one. Now, I always bring lots of food to eat right after I crawl out of the water. Then I go home and eat more and more. You'd think I was starving to death or something!

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on September 16, 2010
at 03:45 AM

Sal, I think that backfires for many. Fat has a way of making for fast satiation.

B4aa2df25a6bf17d22556667ff896170

(851)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:49 AM

eat more calorie dense foods.. nuts, peanut/almond butter, fatty meats, dried fruit, full fat yogurt and whole milk (if you can do dairy).. these foods will give you lots of calories without filling you up. Personally, lots of coffee helps me as well cuz it makes me go to the bathroom, which makes me feel like I can eat more.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:21 AM

Don't forget quasi-paleo desserts. I just made some dark chocolate truffles loaded with coconut oil. Heavy cream type desserts work well too, and creme brulee is a definite possibility here.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:18 AM

Really? I was under the impression that things that make people hungry make most people hungry.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:09 AM

Easy calorie tip number two: mashed tubers, butter, sour cream

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11 Answers

1
0d821bf7d4028b84a6838062db0e9ce0

(754)

on September 16, 2010
at 10:30 PM

if you can handle it add dairy, always works for me.

Having eaten within 1-2 hours of when I work out and than eating something with fat and protein afterwards also seems to help me a bunch.

However the major major thing would be more calories period for gaining mass. And as others have said fat is the most calorie dense. Protein is interesting because while only about 30 g a day will go towards actually muscle mass, tons more of it is used for energy and repair work which also helps with your goals.

How hard are you working out? if you are lifting things so heavy you can't do more than 5 reps or are doing tabathas or long slow cardio to the point that you are drained (burpees till nauseous/ running long enough at a decent rate that your legs are like rubber), often enough I'd think you'd get hungry more often.

worst comes to worst you can sneak the extra calories in with drinks (protein shakes/milk/kefir etc), because they don't tend to satisfy your hunger as noticeably. (also if you drink coffee with cream you can easily add 500-900 extra calories by going to a shot of espresso with the rest of a mug full of cream instead of coffee americono + cream (jumping from 1-2 tbsp of cream to 5-6 oz))

1
89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:27 PM

Without wanting to be funny: make every meal delicious! I often eat more than I think I need to (untill the level of feeling enough), just because it tastes so nice.

I have to admit that I think that usually this means that the next meal is probably smaller, though not always.

And I know that paleo and snacks are not necessarily best friends, but butter or coconut oil and shredded coconut, just a spoon of each, are delicious and easy to eat a lot of calories of...

1
1f70da0b737e9c6e7679a248f4228a01

on September 16, 2010
at 09:58 AM

I remember that you used to be able to pound a jar of nut butter - have you tried a nut-based, grain-free granola as your breakfast? You could chop up dried fruit and dark chocolate to make it even tastier - it's absolutely moreish! MY partner's not often hungry in the morning, but he'll still sit down to a big bowl of my Nola because he loves the taste so much. For that reason, I don't let myself touch the stuff ;)

A mate of mine is currently a skinny little slip of a guy, and he's doing everything he can to bulk up. He's eating six times a day, and training like a maniac. Like you, he never used to have much of an appetite, and while I don't agree with what he's consuming - lots of processed protein powders, of course - it makes sense to take some extra calories in liquid form if you can handle it. I love cream with cinnamon & ground vanilla as a rich dessert.

Find the flavours and aromas that make you drool, and use them as much as possible. I love the smell of roasts in the oven, fresh basil, and bacon, and the flavours of salty butter, runny egg yolks, and wilted greens. I've just spent months battling a drug-fueled, uncontrollable appetite so I avoided those stimuli outside of my eating window. Perhaps you can use the opposite to your advantage.

Good luck!

1
47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on September 16, 2010
at 05:01 AM

If you ever take naps, take them right before meals instead of after. I'm always hungrier after a nap, even if it's a 5-minute one.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on September 16, 2010
at 05:14 AM

One thing that makes me sooooo hungry is swimming, especially snorkeling. I am ravenous after a short snorkle trip and even worse after a long one. Now, I always bring lots of food to eat right after I crawl out of the water. Then I go home and eat more and more. You'd think I was starving to death or something!

4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

(22913)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

Is snorkeling High intensity for you?

7df8f3cc7f1475c3ecbbd4a4feb87d04

(514)

on September 17, 2010
at 12:13 PM

This post http://www.mens-total-fitness.com/swimming-weight-loss.html has some links to studies on swimming and caloric intake, though I haven't had time to take a look at them. But there might be something to the idea that being in the water increases appetite because your body temp is lowered.

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on September 16, 2010
at 04:25 PM

Don't you guys think it's the exposure to the water that does it? Or maybe it's having the snorkel thingamajig in your mouth -- the same way chewing on a toothpick can sometimes make you salivate and then feel hungry.

1
62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on September 16, 2010
at 03:54 AM

Hm, more carb could help. Fat plus carb at the same time could help, like butter with potato. Also, I find variety helps and research backs that up. You might be full but if something new looks very yummy, you are more likely to take a few more bites of the new thing. I think the liquid idea is also good. Could drink a calorie packed smoothie right before bed for instance. YOu will have all night to digest it and still make room in the stomach for breakfast.

Also, you don't HAVE to feel super hungry to eat. Just eat when you don't really feel like it that much. Pick out a favorite food and save it for snacking. There is a time between being hungry and feeling full, when you don't feel super hungry, but you could still eat. So eat! For me, that would only really work at night though, because if I snack in the day, I am too full for regular meals. The only time I could eat more without screwing up other meals would be before bed, when my stomach has somewhat recovered from dinner and yet there are no other meals in the near future to get ruined by the snack.

Also could try more milk sugars, cheese, and nut butters. Those are the things that often make for a weight loss stall, so they might help with weight gain.

1
4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

on September 16, 2010
at 02:08 AM

GOMAD, just kidding. Liquid calories don't trigger leptin as much however..coconut milk smoothie?

Sweet Flavors make me want to eat more. I can keep packing away things like sweet potato with butter and cinnamon, leaves me craving a little more

Favorite foods... Sashimi Salmon I'll eat past satiety because I love it so... Same with good steak.

High Intensity Resistance Exercise-- I'm always noticeably hungrier afterwards

Make sure you're not forcing calories your body doesn't want tho, or you'll bulk instead of lean mass... That's no good.

I'm convinced that gut health, directly reflects weight gain, perhaps your eating enough intake and signaling as such, but not absorbing it all, maybe digestive enzymes?

1
D5db204527668aa712504995c0f8f96f

(551)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:50 AM

Hey Melissa,

Here is what I would do if I was you.

Eat your normal meals (I'm guessing meat, vegetables and probably fruits/tubers). It will be very hard to eat more than that and I doubt it's good to overload your digestive system with too much food volume. This is why I would suggest adding ''easy to eat'' calories to each meals. This would be done by adding fat from oils or from animals (olive oil, coconut oil, lard, etc.).

Basically, at the end of the day, you will be getting in more calories without really noticing it. You will still be able to eat healthy while doing so.

As for training wise, you know this is my thing. I think I would focus on building basic strength in moves like pullups, pushups, and squats.

As a final note, feel free to contact me if you need help scaling the exercise so that they fit your fitness level.

I wish you good luck!

1
21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:07 AM

In my bodybuilding days, I faced the same problem, and emailed one of the champions from the competitive eating circuit for advice. Funny enough, she advised increased fat intake and frequent movement, along with one huge meal a day.

But rather than become more ravenous, you could add some easy to eat calories. And by easy to eat, I mean easy to drink. A tall glass of chocolate coconut milk has 1000 calories. Yes, 1000 calories.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:21 AM

Don't forget quasi-paleo desserts. I just made some dark chocolate truffles loaded with coconut oil. Heavy cream type desserts work well too, and creme brulee is a definite possibility here.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:09 AM

Easy calorie tip number two: mashed tubers, butter, sour cream

0
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on September 17, 2010
at 12:38 AM

If you're exercising/strength training you might want to dial in your protein requirements first before splashing in extra fat/carbs. 1g/pound bodyweight seems to get recommended a lot. Then, I'd estimate my caloric need with something like the Katch-McArdle Formula (supposedly better than the common Harris-Benedict one) just to get a ballpark figure.

Slap on about 10-20% (maybe 200kcal for a small person like yourself?) more calories on top of this and make sure you're consistent with your training if you want your gains to be lean. Fill it out with fat or carbs depending on what kind of exercise you're performing. Play around with it until you find you're performing at your best and making progress. If you're not improving that much, eat more, if you're getting slightly pudgier, dial it back. Maybe even a leangains approach where you cycle calories and macros depending on whether you work out on that day.

Once you know how much you have to eat, try splitting it into a desirable number of meals and see how you handle it. Eating big also takes practice. It can be slightly unpleasant at first but from my experience you'll adapt very quickly to the volume. You might even start to look forward to mega post-workout meals. Check out Richard Nikoley's pwo meals or Part I and II of the Leangains meals series.

Also don't be fooled by folks who tell you to pile on calories indiscriminately. E.g. drink cream or slap on butter. You can only gain so much lean mass in a day and if you overload, you will gain fat. Creating a hypercaloric diet through fat hyperphagia will not help muscle growth. Supply enough protein, create a reasonable caloric overload, and you should be good to go.

I listened to crap like eat 3k-4k calories, squat/deadlift/etc and you'll grow. And they're right, just not in the intended way.. After dialing back on the food and added fats, I'm still making consistent strength gains.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on September 17, 2010
at 12:44 AM

And personally, I feel so much more satisfaction with a big whack of protein compared to big whacks of fat. For example, downing some coconut milk doesn't really fill me up as nicely as say a tub of cottage cheese or yogurt. Yet I can eat maybe two times the latter for the same number of calories and feel so much fuller and prolly be getting better nutrition across the board compared to the coconut milk.

0
A8d95f3744a7a0885894ee0731c9744c

(3761)

on September 16, 2010
at 12:38 PM

Melissa- I'm interested in your exercise regimen. In my experience, cardio doesn't increase my appetite, but heavy lifting makes me ravenous. Other than that, I would recommend a Cordain approach to you paleo; lean meats and veggies. Or even Paleo-Zone! The low amount of carbs with the high amount of food (In paleo zone) jump-started my metabolism. I'm def not an expert, this is all based on my experience. Good luck!

0
4a1966b5bc00a9aefd3abd63b9913284

on September 16, 2010
at 01:08 AM

Eating more carbs will likely leave you hungrier. What is your normal day of meals like? What is your activity level like? It's hard to answer this question without a few more parameters in place...

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 16, 2010
at 01:18 AM

Really? I was under the impression that things that make people hungry make most people hungry.

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