Tip: Excessively Hungry When Starting Low Carb?

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Do you feel hungrier than usual just after starting a low-carb diet? This can often happen, especially if you’ve been limiting calories before. It is normal and if you want to eat more, do so – make sure you eat more food, especially fat, until satisfied.

It is important that you learn to listen to what your body is telling you.

Remember that low carb AND low fat = starvation. On a low-carb diet you need to eat more good fats. Here are some examples:

  • Butter
  • Full-fat cream
  • Olive oil
  • Meat (including the fat)
  • Fatty fish
  • Bacon
  • Eggs
  • Coconut oil

Learn More

Eat When Hungry

The 5 common mistakes on LCHF
The Top 5 Tips For Weight Loss

18 Comments

  1. Cassandra
    All well and good. I'm all for eating until satisfied, especially as a way of totally breaking dependence on sugar and carbs. However, big caveat: not everyone loses weight this way.

    Speaking for us menopausal ladies in the BMI 24-28 range, I personally find it impossible to lose any weight if I eat until satisfied all the time. The body wants to defend its fat stores and hunger signals are the way it does so. Because I prefer to eat to satisfaction or just not eat (I find eating little unsatisfying meals much harder than skipping meals), in order to drop any lbs/kg, I absolutely must fast intermittently as you and Dr. Fung promote. And this means being a little hungry sometimes. And this is not a bad thing!

  2. Dawn McVey
    I agree with you. I haven't lost weight on a low carb diet. I'm diabetic so need to eat low carb. I actually lost weight on the Newcastle diet , but I couldn't sustain 800 Cal's a day plus exercise. So gave up and just except I'm going to be overweight.
    Reply: #10
  3. Ann
    Thank you for this helpful tip! I'm so glad that I found this website, there is so much information and positivity. It is greatly appreciated. I have struggled for years trying to maintain a low fat, high carb diet. Since I started the low carb diet, I can feel such an improvement in my energy levels, mood and sleep patterns. My blood sugar levels aren't doing rollercoasters all day long. I've lost 20 pounds so far. Once again, thank you for such a great website.
  4. 1 comment removed
  5. Nina
    I have type 1 diabetes, which means that I need to inject insulin to stay alive. I started Banting in June last year. You are incorrect in your assumption that you need to eat carbs in forms of bread, rice , potatoes, pasta, beans! I have always been slim and well controlled. Since Banting I had to reduce my short acting insulin by almost 3/4! My HbA1c is 6.2....getting better every time I have it tested. I ran a support group for people with diabetes until 2009, when I joined my husband overseas. I wish I had known about Banting then! Since my Banting journey I have met many people with diabetes, mainly with type 2 diabetes, who lost enormous amounts of weight, regained their health - many are off their diabetes medication (type 2!), as well as blood pressure and various other meds associated with insulin resistance, obesity, and eating carbs! Please do some research...go and get support from people who are Banters to regain Your Health, weight loss without hunger and Happiness!
    Comment Deleted Permanently
  6. Karen
    I am pre diabetic and have metabolic syndrome. I started the low carb, high fat protocol on Valentine's Day. I started at 297 and today weigh 266. The diet Doctor knows what he is talking about. My fatty liver numbers are better, triglycerides are down and cholesterol is better. I sleep 9 hours a day. When I finish my 6:00 dinner, I don't eat again until lunch. I have coffee with heavy whipping cream in the morning when I feel hunger coming on and I am not hungry until noon. That is a wonderful time to fast and burn fat. Love it! I am well on my way to abounding joy!
  7. cindy
    I also am pre-diabetic and started the low carb eating. 10 pounds in 1 week. But I do find myself feeling more hungry often and cravings for carbs are getting stronger
  8. Kim
    I'm also been eating low carb for 2 weeks. The first week I lost 7 pounds but started eating chocolate which was a bad idea & this week only lost 2 pounds. I also feel hungry & also craving carbs.
  9. Fahmeda Rahman
    Does this mean that we can eat as much protein as we need until we are full? I've had all my fats and carbs and protein for today and I'm starving.
  10. kimberly cooper
    you don't have to accept being overweight
    have you ever heard of dr. mercola I think you better look him up. we can lose it by eating the amount of fat and protein at meals that we should be doing while cutting our carbs and drink more water. fat keeps you from feeling hungry and starving.
    try looking him up he has great knowledge in his work.

    http://www.mercola.com/

  11. kimberly cooper
    the person who made this website, your awesome. I believe the reason for starting to feel hungry is all about not eating enough fat. and those that are saying they are and less carbs are not balance in their protein. and if not one of those is not balance. its why I suggest you go to the mercola website I left above. he helps you lose weight.
    Reply: #12
  12. Gentiann
    Are you here just to advertise Mercola web site??????
    Diet Doctor site have every information needed to lose weight.....it is not fair to try to redirect people to some commercial sites!
    Thanks to Dr. Eenfeldt, we are slimmer and in better health now.
    Reply: #13
  13. Peter Biörck Team Diet Doctor
    Hi Gentiann!

    Thank you for your nice comment! :)

    We usually remove comments with referral to commercial sites if the only purpose seems to be promoting the site (this was a close call :).

    But if someone really have tried to follow our best tips and still don't lose weight then it could be a good idea to look for other possibilities.

    Our best weigh-loss tips can be found here:
    https://www.dietdoctor.com/how-to-lose-weight

    Are you here just to advertise Mercola web site??????
    Diet Doctor site have every information needed to lose weight.....it is not fair to try to redirect people to some commercial sites!
    Thanks to Dr. Eenfeldt, we are slimmer and in better health now.

  14. Val J
    *Very* new to low-carb eating. Pre-diabetic and trying to get everything under control. I do notice that I am hungry more often, especially just an hour or so after having a meal. I don't find a stronger craving for carbs in particular, which is good, and I have plenty of alternatives to snack on. One thing Ive noticed is that my acid reflux problem has vanished. Certainly don't miss that!
  15. Jenn
    I tried low carb, I was always hungry. I ate more fat and gained 2 lbs. I am already slim at 108 and now 110lbs and I don't think this is for me. I would rather eat carbs (but not a huge amount) and everything in moderation - I have found that this works best for me and it makes sense. Once I start limiting food groups, I overeat others and gain weight. No thanks. Moderation is key.
  16. Sandy
    At 55 yrs old, and breezed through menopause, I started low carb 3 months ago. Down 17 lbs and still going. Keep my carb intake around the 20 mark. My success comes largely from logging everything I put in my mouth and no guessing. Getting creative with Coconut flour and almond flour recipes for variety. I can do this!!
  17. Mila
    Agreed I lost 102lbs on keto. And. Anytime I stalled guess what broke it? Increasing my fat intake! and even though in general moderation is recommended in most things I found the reason this worked for me in particular was because I could eat as much as I wanted to
  18. Mila
    Another thing about low-carb or keto is there is pretty much a low carb/low sugar substitute for everything. Pizza brownies pasta Etc so you never really feel like you're missing out
  19. Elisa
    I am trying a diet plan where you eat low carb one day and normal (high) carb the next, while staying within 1500 calories per day. Today is my first day of the diet and a low carb day. I am starving! I was fine until after lunch, and then the hunger hit hard. I had a huge dinner and felt full for about fifteen minutes, and then boom, hungry again! I hope this gets better because I'm pretty miserable. I don't think I could do this daily like you all are doing! All I can think about is how I can have carbs as soon as I wake up in the morning, lol. Good luck to everyone on here!

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