Differences between being thirsty and being hungry

Differences between being thirsty and being hungry


It might seem impossible, and be associated with two completely different sensations, but it’s actually very common for people to confuse thirst with hunger . However, it is important to know the difference between being thirsty or hungry, and to be able to identify the signals that suggest the need to drink or eat. Especially in the case of a diet aimed at weight loss : in this case, by confusing the need to introduce water or drinks rather than food , there is a risk of taking in more calories than necessary, which makes it more difficult, for example, to achieve slimming .

Thirsty or hungry?

The same part of the brain is responsible for interpreting signals for hunger and thirst , which can actually be conflicting. In general, food should be eaten at more or less regular intervals, eating every three or four hours: if less time has passed, the need to eat could objectively arise. Signs of hunger include several signs, such as: feeling weak, irritable or moody, having the classic rumbling stomach , nausea , headaches . True hunger comes gradually, not suddenly.

In case you feel really hungry, any food will be able to satisfy this deficiency/need. Similarly, a sudden feeling of hunger that arises after having recently eaten food is more likely to be identified as a craving, an attack of gluttony, rather than true hunger. In order not to fall into the temptation to grab the first snack from the pantry, it could be useful to put a simple trick into practice such as having fun, going out for a walk, reading a book or committing time to a manual activity that can distract you.

When you feel the classic feeling of thirst, however, there may be dehydration . Some noticeable symptoms include dry eyes , headache, sluggishness, nausea, dizziness , dry skin , and constipation . Furthermore, the color of the urine could indicate the real need to introduce liquids: in general, when the urine is dark yellow in color (similar to tea) and salivation is reduced, leaving the mouth dry , it is necessary to reintroduce liquids. Drink waterat regular intervals throughout the day, even if you’re not thirsty, reduces the risk of becoming dehydrated.

Hunger Bites or Sense of Hunger?

Hunger pangs, that is, that burning sensation and pain in the stomach lining that is relieved by introducing food, should not be confused with the real feeling of hunger . The immediate relief that is felt when food is introduced is a physiological mechanism: the food fills the stomach, and its walls do not rub, generating abdominal pain . Hunger attacks are , therefore, a false feeling of hunger, which actually manifests itself when there is a real need for nutrients , accompanied by a desire to introduce certain foods.

Hunger attacks can result from:

  • poor food management and meal breakdown;
  • stress and anxiety
  • sleep disorders
  • poor quality food ( junk food )
  • having consumed too abundant meals for a long time that have dilated the stomach, increasing its capacity
  • excessively restrictive diets and consumption of small quantities of food

Symptoms when you are thirsty

The symptoms of dehydration are closely related to those of hunger and can “confuse” your body into thinking you are hungry, and therefore need to eat food to increase your energy level . Nausea, tiredness, exhaustion may be signs of dehydration, not hunger. When you feel thirsty, your mouth becomes dry, a symptom that can be temporarily appeased by eating. To avoid taking calories unnecessarily, just drink a glass of water and check if the urge to eat has subsided.

In addition to eliminating toxins from the kidneys , water performs many other functions in our body, including diluting minerals , regulating body temperature and keeping the skin hydrated .

Symptoms of moderate dehydration:

  • constipation ,
  • headache ,
  • mental confusion
  • exhaustion
  • risk of urinary stones .

When do you feel really thirsty? By the time you lose 1% to 2% of your body fluids. Often, however, being thirsty is confused with being hungry, ending up running into the effects of dehydration, burdensome for everyday actions, from work to sport .

Here’s what happens if you always drink sparkling water.

Did you know that with diabetes…

Diabetic subjects or subjects at high risk of diabetes are more thirsty than subjects whose glycemic values ​​lend themselves as normal and balanced. This occurs because hyperglycemia , a condition for which the body needs to dilute the glucose present in the blood to prevent its high concentration from damaging the cells , triggers the urgent and constant need to introduce liquids, precisely to thin the substances sugary.

When you drink very sugary drinks, fruit juices or sodas with a high glucose content, the desire for thirst generally increases.



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