Hungry feeling, but not actually hungry. How to help this?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 26, 2012 at 3:54 PM

This is going to be difficult to explain so I'll try and be detailed. Firstly, this is not the usual feeling I get after eating that I think I am hungry. That feeling is usually a craving for food like a salty food, a sugary food, but my stomach is bloated and full and that feeling goes away eventually. It is more of an urgent psychological calling to eat that I think most people who struggle with food have. The feeling i am experiencing today is different. Its kind of like when you are sick with a cold and you have a knawing sensation in the bottom of your stomach that only dissipates with the ingestion of some food. The problem is, I ate food, and the feeling just got worse. I must admit that last week I felt like baking some chocolate cookies and bought a large bag of chocolate chips. (Iwas too lazy to make the cookies so I had a bag of chocolate)I have been slowly getting through the bag by eating them after dinner until my stomach hurts all week. So when I woke up this morning and had this hunger feeling I ate the remaining chocolate chips (maybe about 70 grams). But now I have this pain in my stomach and it won't go away and I don't know what it is. So I am thinking that it could be eating this chocolate that has made this happen, or some kind of gut flora that is chilling in my gut? I don't feel sick, if I did, I would definitely blame this on a cold. I just ate 4 chicken wings and a big cup of coffee and 750ml of water and my stomach is bulging but the knawing feeling of hunger is SO DISTRACTING. let me know if you have experienced this, what you thought it was, or if you know someone else who had this and know what it was. If you know this feeling when you feel unwell, its the same thing, so do you know what causes it. I have been eating at least 2000 calories for the last 3 days with the chocolate but apart from that all Paleo in the 1400-1900 calorie range.

EDIT: I worked out what it was. I had eaten a spicy thai dish the night before the pain started, and the feeling I realized is the feeling you get after eating spicy chilies or spicy food. Like a burning feeling in your stomach. It has nearly gone away completely now, so I'm all good. I guess the chili in the dish upset my guy somehow.

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on March 26, 2012
at 04:42 PM

It sounds like you accidentally irritated your gut lining or disrupted your gut flora.Gut irritation does feel like hunger sometimes. I'd consider myself "sick" with those symptoms and try to be a goody-goody-two-shoes until things calm down.

Namely, I'd drink some bone broth, eat as much fatty meat as I could handle, and otherwise stick to foods I know I find soothing. For me, that might include eggs and some cooked veggies but no salad, etc. I'd try a sip of water kefir or a bite of yogurt, but I'd only take more if the first bite was well received. I'd probably have some ripe banana but no grapefruit, etc., etc.

With luck, 3-10 days of that should see your gut settling down.


on February 01, 2014
at 11:57 AM

just happened to me. i made paleo chocolate chip cookies and ate more than a few and had major stomach cramps (labor pain type). Maybe 1 cookie next chocolate craving, but i bet i won't have any for awhile.


on May 10, 2013
at 04:53 PM

My stomach was exactly the same way when my gallbladder went bad. Also chocolate is a huge irritant to a bad gallbladder. Chocolate chip cookies sent me to the ER.


on March 26, 2012
at 05:07 PM

I used to feel like this all of the time before I started eating paleo. I could eat and eat and eat, be technically full but have the feeling in my stomach of unsatisfaction. The only time I get this feeling now is if I cheat and eat something like sugar or gluten. I would say to just keep eating paleo, with NO CHEATS and see if this feeling goes away. If not, there may be something medically wrong with you and you should consult a doctor.



on March 26, 2012
at 04:46 PM

Yup, I think the chocolate chips are probably the culprit. If you've been paleo for any length of time, you stop cultivating the gut flora that deal with the things you don't eat, and your body overall becomes less sensitized to them. I've gotten bad stomach cramps from "healthy" sugary drinks, and when I fall upon a piece of toast or four I can usually feel it in my gut for the next few days. Continue eating well, and drink plenty of water and tea. Keep eating a normal amount of calories (don't try to starve this off, it won't work) and make sure to get plenty of animal fat.

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