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1780 calories by noon and still hungry
Old 06-13-2008, 12:43 PM   #1
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1780 calories by noon and still hungry

So, here's what I've eaten so far today:

1 cup oatmeal with a dollop of peanut butter: 400 calories
Half a peanut butter sandwich: 250 calories
1 Nature Valley peanut butter granola bar: 180 calories
1 apple: 80 calories
3 pretzel rods: 120 calories
2 ham/swiss/lettuce/mustard sandwiches: 750 calories (5 oz ham, 2 oz cheese)

So I'm up to 1780 calories for the day, just after lunch. And I am hungry enough to be distracted (not that I need help in being distracted). Today is not unusual; this is pretty consistent. Though my hunger level definitely seems to be rising in recent weeks.

I've fairly discontinued a work lunch program (it was no longer practical) that I had been on for the last nine years. I've been trying to figure out what to bring in for lunch that is filling, decently healthy, easily portable, decently priced, and (very importantly) doesn't take very long to cook/assemble -- I'm lazy. This week I'm trying ham sandwiches, though those are pushing $5 per day since I need so much food.

I've tried Lean Pockets and Chicken Helper, but geez the sodium is through the roof. Big salads weren't working out for me, either. I'm not big into soups nor seafood.

Anyhow, does anyone have ideas on things to bring into work (lunch and/or snacks) that might help me out here.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:01 PM   #2
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I like mixing up a batch of cut up chicken with brown rice, mixed with some jalapeños and chipotle, covered with some pepper jack or goat cheese and cook it like a casserole. It's filling, easy to reheat in a couple of minutes. Sometimes I drop the oven and just grill the chicken, dice it up with some brown rice and whatever sauce sounds good at the moment and just reheat it all later too.

Pulled chicken with herb goat cheese crumbled over the top is another quick and easy one.

Chicken salad sandwiches, or tuna salad sandwiches, or egg salad sandwiches, all with just enough miracle whip or mayo for flavor, with spicy mustard and sweet relish make for decent quick meals.

That's all I can think of off the top of my head that I've used when in a hurry, especially when I take the time at the beginning of the week to cook it and then just reheat it later if its a meal that needs to be warmed up.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:01 PM   #3
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Yogurt? Light yogurt 6-8 oz will run you 100-120 cals.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:05 PM   #4
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Almonds are a healthy, filling snack that might help curb the hunger. They are a little pricey though.

In the morning with that oatmeal, try drinking 16 ounces of water with it. Then, be sure to keep drinking water throughout the day.

Also, try splitting some of that food up. i.e. take what you'd eat at lunch time and eat half. Then save the other half and eat it 2-3 hours later.

I've also noticed that eating an apple, pear, baby carrots, and cottage cheese as snacks is both heathier and more filling than the processed granola (and even protein) bars.

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Old 06-13-2008, 01:10 PM   #5
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I make a lot of turkey sandwiches, with yogurt and fruit--those can be made up easily. I also look for the Kashi frozen dinners--for $3.59 each they have a decent amount of calories and protein, better than most frozen stuff.
Tuna salad is good, and quick, if you can stand the smell!
Keep grapes in the fridge--they are quick to take along, also we use applesauce to fill in calories at lunch--it will keep at any temp, another plus. Unsweetened applesauce runs about 50 calories for the little individual packages.

Whoa that is a lot of calories--maybe you need more protein!
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:12 PM   #6
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Most peanut butter has an amazingly large amount of sugar in it. First, I would suggest that maybe the sugar or the peanuts themselves are triggering your hunger, so try staying away from peanuts and peanut butter and see if that helps.

Bread (especially white, squishy American bread) is also notorious for having a lot of sugar in it.

You wanna feel full? You really want to? Have I got a solution for you, (though I have never done this at work, myself). Try plain black beans, plain brown rice, and plain, canned corn. You can bring the beans and corn in their cans, and you could pre-cook the rice and bring it in tupperware. Then heat them up in the microwave.

Black beans, brown rice, and corn have a HUGE amount of fiber, and there is no way that anybody could eat that many calories of these items without feeling totally stuffed. I guarantee it. I won't vouch for the effects on your digestive tract such as gas, though.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:13 PM   #7
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Hunger is a weird thing, and I think you're pretty much screwed. I can eat the same thing on two different days, and on one it "holds" me, and on the other it does not.

Here are my thoughts, but they're probably mostly baloney (Umm, good):

1. Ever hear about how someone on morphine says that the pain is still there, but it's not important. I work on trying to have that relationship with hunger. It's there, but I don't let it control me. Hunger is my friend.

2. You've got to do something to distract you from the hunger. Not easy when you're working. But I have noticed that sometimes I'll be super hungry, and if I get involved in something, I'll completely forget the craving. In fact, sometimes the hunger seems to come and go on it's own.

3. Say "Nothing tastes as good as thin feels."

None of these things work all the time for me.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:14 PM   #8
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I second the egg salad sandwiches - very filling. You might also bring some baggies with extra food to supplement the sandwiches. Try dried fruit and nuts - like peanuts and raisins and cut up veggies - like carrots and celery. Remember to drink lots of water too.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:21 PM   #9
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Carrots/celery and french onion/ranch chip dip. Relatively low cal. You can eat a lot of it and it still isn't too many calories. Easy to prep.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:22 PM   #10
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are you trying to lose weight or just limit calories in general?

if you're trying to lose weight - the hunger feeling is tricky. Your body is often "used' to a certain amount of weight (whether it's high or low, just the avg you've had your life) and will make you feel "hungry" once you get under that weight - part of the survival reflex.

So if you're trying to lose weight, you will often feel like you are "starving" once you get below your average weight.

so akin to what T-al said, you might just have to get through it until your body adjusts.

If it's just feeling hungry, then another thing i have found is that more nutrient dense foods keep me feeling satisfied longer. I can have a super nutritious smoothy (plain yogurt, 2 cups spinach, 1/2 cup blueberries, a few strawberries, honey, flax meal, protein powder and some juice) around 3pm and not eat the rest of the day.

I also found that i eat more in the morning/early afternoon , i don't have to eat much toward the end of the day either - that's a better way to eat too since you don't really need to eat much at night. I patterned my eating after my little kids since they eat much more based on their "needs" than on habit.

I don't worry as much about what i eat as long as it's earlier in the day and don't let myself eat unhealthy treats later in the evening.

what about whole wheat pastas with veggies and chicken for nutritious, filling foods to go?
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:27 PM   #11
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Go to natural PB if you haven't.

Switch your sandwich bread to a sprouted grain bread.

Do you have the same problem on weekends? I find that I'm hungry when I'm bored or stressed. As result, I'm usually full on many fewer calories on the weekend than when I'm at work.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:31 PM   #12
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Kronk, I can't help but notice you didn't get any real protein in until lunch time. A guy your size should be eating 5-6 meals a day with probably 30 grams of protein and 350 calories at each meal. If you do this, I bet you won't be very hungry or have cravings. Your only issue was you waited all morning to have 2 ham sandwiches, you could have had one earlier for a snack and you probably wouldn't have been so hungry before lunch.

I've been doing this 5 meals a day thing for close to 6 weeks, now. Am almost never hungry, and that's with my avg. daily calories in a week never exceeding 1450 cals. That is just above my Basal Metabolic Rate, and then I do my boot camp for the weight loss part. No cravings at all. (it helps to cut out sugar,fake sugar, and caffeine, too) Did I mention no cravings at all? Sorry, that is just a startling and new thing for me so I am pretty glad to have made this change, I am in control, eating for fuel now.

As far as easy to bring food. Grill up enough chicken breasts for the week, and bring chicken breast sandwiches, instead. More protein dense than ham, although lean ham is not a bad choice, either. Make sure you bread is multigrain/wholegrain, keeps you full longer, too. Other times I make albacore tuna salad with celery/onions/relish/olive oil, also really good protein with heart healthy oils.

That's just off the top of my head.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:32 PM   #13
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Thanks for the quick suggestions so far.

RetiredGypsy, that rice/chicken casserole sounds intriguing.

Chicken salad might be something I'll end up trying. I lost my taste for tunafish, and no desire to try to recapture it.

Almonds might be worth a try -- they work for DW.

Hova, I dring about 32 ounces of water by the time I finish my oatmeal. And I'm sipping all day long. I usually go through at least 80 oz of water per day.

Eating an apple doesn't seem to make much of a dent in my hunger.

I did yogurt for a number of years, throwing in Uncle Sam's cereal to make it a lot thicker. Kind of lost my taste for that, though, and also seemed to mess up my digestion as well.

I do eat small amounts throughout the day.

The Kashi frozen dinners seem to have around 320 calories. I'd need two of them to even come close.

3g of sugars per 2 tbsp of peanut butter doesn't seem like much to me. PB is a good source of protein and reasonably healthy fat, which takes longer to digest. Doesn't seem to be helping me much.

I don't eat the squishy bread, I go for whole grain breads.

W2R, I bet I could eat a lot of that rice/beans/corn. Not sure my fellow jiu jitsu students would appreciate that very much... ;-)

TromboneAl, that is very much true. I'm bored to tears at work, which doesn't help at all. Danged if I can think of anything to do around here to distract me other than surf the net and eat food.

bright eyed, at this point I'm just maintaining weight and at most lose 5-7 pounds. I'm down 70 pounds from my max of 7 years ago. These days, I'm tired of being constantly aware of my hunger. So right now my goal is to stop being hungry.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:40 PM   #14
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raw vegetables plain like carrots celery broccoli (be like a rabbit) fruit oranges apples bananas...foods with fiber and also eating slowly mindfully helps to send the message to the brain that you're getting full so it can start shutting the hunger/cravings down...

Go to the book store and buy a copy of Eat To Live. Good luck. I'm trying to do my best to do what I preach - not easy - I had a banana and orange for breakfast now going to go have some humus (oops hummus - I might eat compost if this doesn't help!) on pita bread....later some fungus on crackers...
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:48 PM   #15
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Boy the comments keep flowing. More...

igsoy, you're right, protein intake is pretty low early in the day. Around 17g in the oatmeal/pb, another 10g or so with the PB sandwich, another 5g with the granola bar. Hrm, chicken breast sandwiches sound pretty good (especially w/cheese). I could also try mixing up the order of my food intake a bit.

Actually, the morning/afternoon do tend to be my big eating times. When I get home, I'll often have a handful of baby carrots, maybe another slice of bread, sometimes an apple, sometimes low-far popcorn. I do martial arts every evening; there's no way I'd eat prior to working out, and it is usually close to 9PM by the time I eat dinner. On good days, I eat a salad. Bad days I have a (embarrassed to write this) Hungry Man frozen dinner. Middling days I have eggs, or whole wheat pasta with lean ground beef and stewed tomatoes (I know, lots of sugar there). But I'm not as concerned about nights, because I'm not usually that hungry at night.

I know there's lots of ways in which my diet could be improved -- I'm horrible about eating fruit (don't like many fruits), and I do eat processed foods. And I'm too lazy to spend much time preparing food (or finding recipes or going grocery shopping), and DW and my schedules don't mesh so we don't eat together.

Keep 'em coming, believe me I'm paying attention.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:48 PM   #16
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I would say boredom is a major piece of it. I have the kind of job that is marked by alternating periods of boredom and high stress (and sometimes both), and I am a stress eater (boredom goes without saying). This is exacerbated by an expectation that I put in a lot of face/desk time. I have a very, very hard time controlling myself. Thus far, I have tried a few strategies. What seems to work best is eating every few hours, drinking water and green or white tea, and doing the whole grain/fiber thing for meals. For snacks, the best thing I have stubled across by far are the mixtures of dried fruit and nuts (in the same bag) that Costco sells (by the elephant-load, of course). It has some sugar, but a modest portion of that and I am good to go.
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Old 06-13-2008, 02:14 PM   #17
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I used to pack a hard boiled egg . It was just the right amount of protein for a quick pick me up .
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Old 06-13-2008, 02:16 PM   #18
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Ask your doc about having your thyroid level and blood sugar tested.
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Old 06-13-2008, 02:22 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brewer12345 View Post
I would say boredom is a major piece of it. I have the kind of job that is marked by alternating periods of boredom and high stress (and sometimes both), and I am a stress eater (boredom goes without saying). This is exacerbated by an expectation that I put in a lot of face/desk time. I have a very, very hard time controlling myself. Thus far, I have tried a few strategies. What seems to work best is eating every few hours, drinking water and green or white tea, and doing the whole grain/fiber thing for meals. For snacks, the best thing I have stubled across by far are the mixtures of dried fruit and nuts (in the same bag) that Costco sells (by the elephant-load, of course). It has some sugar, but a modest portion of that and I am good to go.
check the ingredients on the costco dried fruit (i used to get for my kids) but they use artificial colors, sugar and sulfur...they have unsugared/uncolored/unsulfured dried fruit at trader joe's...
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Old 06-13-2008, 02:23 PM   #20
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OK, it happens that I am not even slightly hungry, so maybe it will help to list my menu so far today. I am a cubicle dweller.

Breakfast:
coffee with 1/3 c. nonfat dry milk in it: 30 calories
small apple: 55 calories
Activia light yogurt: 70 calories

Snack:
Orville Redenbacher 94% FF popcorn, mini-bag: 100 calories

Lunch:
boiled egg; 78 calories
banana: 105 calories
small (1.5 oz) bag of pretzels: 160 calories
24 oz water: 0 calories

Total: 598 calories

I have been up since 6:30, and it's 2:10 PM and I'm not even slightly hungry yet. After work I'll go to the gym, so I won't be eating any snacks or other items until at least 5 PM when I get home. By then, after I cool off and relax a little I'll be hungry for dinner!
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