Every meal or snack needs to contain AT LEAST 15 g of protein- this is the minimum. No more than 20 g of carbohydrates per meal or snack because carbs cause a spike in insulin levels, and insulin causes you to be hungry, have heightened perceived pleasantness of sweet taste, and therefore increases food intake leading to more calories consumed.
Low carbohydrates are considered anything between 100-and 150 carbs/daily. If you keep your carbohydrate intake to 100 grams/day or less, you will likely put your body into ketosis. Ketosis is a metabolic state in which fat provides most of the fuel for the body. It occurs when there is limited access to glucose (blood sugar), the preferred fuel source for many cells in the body.
Ghrelin is the hunger hormone produced by your stomach. It gets released into your bloodstream and tells your brain to seek food. Therefore, we have you eat every 3 hours to keep that Ghrelin level low, so you don’t get spikes in hunger. The lower your Ghrelin levels, the fuller you feel, and the easier it is to eat fewer calories.
Ghrelin levels increase and make you hungry when you start a diet. This is a natural response by your body, which tries to protect you from starvation.
Ghrelin seems to be a hormone that can’t be directly controlled with drugs, diets, or supplements. However, there are a few things you can do to help maintain healthy levels:
Avoid weight extremes: Both obesity and anorexia alter ghrelin levels
Prioritize sleep: Poor sleep increases your levels and has been linked to increased hunger and weight gain. A person who sleeps at least 7 hours a night burns 400 more calories than a person who sleeps 6 hours or less!
Eat more protein: A high-protein diet increases fullness and reduces hunger. One of the mechanisms behind this is a reduction in ghrelin levels.
Maintain a stable weight: Drastic weight changes and yo-yo dieting disrupt vital hormones, including ghrelin.