How To Increase Appetite Without Medication
Food is one of the greatest joys of life, but for many, a sluggish appetite can put a damper on mealtime.
While we often hear of the consequences of overeating, the opposite can be just as serious of a concern. Our appetites are responsible for ensuring that our bodies consume the proper number of calories to keep our muscles strong, our energy levels high, and our bodies functioning at top notch. Without proper caloric intake, even the most basic of daily tasks can seem overwhelming, and you might find yourself searching for how to increase your appetite.
Many factors come together to keep our appetites working as they should, under normal circumstances. However, everything from illness, medications, emotional states, activity levels, and more can all interfere with a healthy appetite.
Food and meals should be one of the greatest joys of life, not a task. While of course appetite levels naturally fluctuate based on age, weight, activity level, and other factors, if you find your low appetite levels carrying on for more than just a day or two, consider following the steps below as a natural and enjoyable way to boost your appetite enjoy your mealtimes once again.
What You Will Need
Just as there are a host of reasons why your appetite levels might be acting up, there are a host of ways to address this problem. While you can certainly turn to medications or supplements for a boost in appetite, we prefer starting in the kitchen. Rekindle your love affair with food, which may have been dampened over time due to any number of the above reasons.
To rediscover your appetite and joy of eating, we recommend focusing on the following, all of which you will need to follow this tutorial on how to increase your appetite:
- Flexibility: Gone are the days of tightly prescribed meal times and calories. Obsessing over when and what to eat, how much of it, and when meal times should occur can easily kill the body's natural intuitive appetite and turn eating into a chore. Adopting a flexible outlook toward food will be essential.
- Calorically-dense foods: To fuel your body and make sure it gets the macronutrients and micronutrients you need to feel your best, processed options are out. Instead, replace them with natural, nutrient-dense options. This may require you make some adjustments at the grocery store and in your meal planning.
- Common kitchen spices: To wake up sluggish taste buds and give your palate a kick start, adding spices into your meals is a game-changer.
- Time and patience: Revitalizing a lackluster appetite can take time. Don't expect total improvements overnight, but realize that you may have to tweak with your routine, your meals, and your daily to get back into healthy eating habits that work for you.
Step 1: Examine Your Food Rules
Are you used to strict rules when it comes to eating? Do you always count and maintain certain caloric limits on each meal?
In our modern era of eating, new diets, guidelines, and regulations on how to eat seem to be released daily. This overwhelm can spell disaster for your appetite. First and foremost, you'll need to get back in touch with your connection to food as a source of joy, not a chore.
Your body is the best judge when it comes to what it needs, and if you're craving breakfast for dinner or something savory for breakfast, go for it! If three meals a day just don't strike your fancy, switch it up with 5-6 smaller meals throughout the day.
While we're not suggesting you eat a donut any time a craving hits, allow yourself to get back in touch with your body's natural hunger and satiety urges.
Step 2: Stock Your Pantry With Nutrients
When it comes to calories, they're not all created equal.
Our modern diet is oftentimes littered with nutritiously void, highly processed options. If you're already suffering from a slow appetite, and are filling your stomach with empty, processed options, simple carbs, and artificial ingredients, this can worsen your woes. It's likely that you're missing our on energy-sustaining nutrients and noshing down on empty calories that leave your blood-sugar levels spiking and crashing.
Now is not the time to skimp on calories if your body is already depleted, so grab nutrient rich options like complex carbohydrates, oatmeal, potatoes, whole grain pasta, and healthy fats like nuts, nut butters, and avocados.
Sneaky hacks can easily boost your calorie intake, such as cooking oatmeal in milk rather than water, adding sauces and cheeses to your favorite entrees, or snacking on hummus rather than lower-calorie options like salsa.
Step 3: Spice It Up
Just in the way we get bored of seeing the same TV shows or movies on repeat, our taste buds can become tired of the same old meals and snacks. So mix it up! Adding variety to a tired routine is a tried and true way to put the zest back into meal time and wake up your appetite.
Certain spices are known digestives, such as coriander, so try adding that to your meals. Ginger is also known to assist digestion. Try to break out of your comfort zone when it comes to your culinary choices, and tantalize your taste buds with new flavors and fragrances.
Salt can also bring out a dish's flavor and liven up a meal, but it's best to steer clear of added sodium. Instead, try Tabasco sauce, sriracha, or amino acids, for a healthier salty kick.
Step 4: Practice Patience
When it comes to something as complex as appetite, each of our bodies runs to a different rhythm and what works for one person may not work for you.
As you work through each step, keep in mind that there's no one quick fix to your health. If eating six small meals doesn't feel right, adjust accordingly. Some people's appetites are stimulated by warmer meals and spicier flavors, while some are the opposite.
While you're tinkering with different meals, times of day, new recipes, and new pantry staples, don't get discouraged if you don't notice an immediately healed appetite! Be mindful that the body takes time to adjust to change, and what works for one person may not for another.
Practice patience as you increase your appetite back up to normal levels, and use this period as a time to experiment and try foods and eating styles you might not have otherwise!
Was this tutorial helpful to you in increasing your appetite?
Everyone deserves to enjoy their food, and we hope this article will help you to do just that. Fueling our bodies in a way that's both pleasurable and healthy ensures our longevity, health, and happiness, and enjoyable meal times can be a reality for everyone, regardless of your health ailments.
Please let us know if you enjoyed this tutorial on how to increase your appetite in the comments, and share with anyone you think might also benefit. Bon appetite!