Getting to Know Your Hunger
One way to get in touch with the nuances of hunger, is to check in with yourself many times throughout the day. An easy way to do this is by using a rating scale from 0 to 5, where 0 is painful hunger and 5 is neutral.
Many researchers use a rating system like this when they are evaluating hunger and fullness issues (which is known as a visual analogue rating). This type of rating is also used for pain, when you are admitted to the hospital, because like hunger, pain is a subjective feeling. That’s why there is no right or wrong number, this is merely a method that helps you listen and become attuned to your hunger cues. The following chart gives more detailed qualitative descriptions of the 0 to 5 scale.
Use the hunger discovery scale to check in with yourself throughout the day. Each time you check-in, you want to ask two questions.
- What is the overall quality of the sensation? In this moment, does my hunger feel pleasant, unpleasant, or neutral?
- In terms of intensity, how would I rate my hunger in this moment?