The thread on snacking got me thinking that, while i’m ravenous at work right now, the feeling of hunger is not constant with regard to the time since you last ate. The most obvious example is at night…I don’t think it’s common to wake up with enormous hunger, i’m never hungry until half an hour or so after waking. If I wake at say 3 or 4 am, i don’t notice feeling hungry and easily go back to sleep, even though it is often many, many hours since I ate last. So, a question, does the body suppress the feeling of hunger in order to allow sleep ? …(good idea, grumpy cavemen make bad hunters)…is the mechanism understood? Can it be mimicked to aid those with eating problems? Is it intrinsically related to sleeping or a secondary symptom. I know someone is gonna hit me with peripheral nervous system stuff and CCK receptors…but i rememeber no details.

I’m usually starving when I wake up.

OK, topic abandoned…
But it doesn’t wake you though does it?

In my case, sometimes it does. But then I’m hypoglycemic.

Before I even get into this: This is all IMHO. Okay, let’s go!

Hunger can be body driven in that your body needs fuel. Hunger can be driven by your mind in that you THINK you are hungry because you are bored, frustrated, angry, lonely. I do think as you sleep, if you have a “normal” sleep pattern, this sense or feeling of hunger is normally suppressed. But some people actually sleep walk and eat. Somewhere, between body and mind, they feel the need to eat. Weather or not their body actually needs this fuel would depend on many things.

In my personal experience: I don’t wake up hungry in the morning if I’ve eaten late the night before. If I follow a regular schedule of meals I naturally wake up hungry for some fuel in the morning. I don’t really know if the mechanism (i.e. the chemical, biological, physiological) reason for this is understood. All I know is that if I follow a very set schedule of awake/sleep eating/not eating times, my body gets fairly demanding. As my exercise program became more intrinsic to my life I found myself becoming “on edge” if I skipped a session. Because my body is used to that. I got the same “on edge” feeling if I skipped or delayed a meal.

I think in many ways, we train our bodies to want certain things at certain times. However, again, this is just in my humble opinion.


Crap. I thought this was the Knut Hamsun topic. I gotta stay out of all those book-based threads.