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Dutchess_III's avatar

Why can't I handle hunger like I could when I was younger?

Asked by Dutchess_III (36083points) August 10th, 2014

I’ve always been tall and slender. Some would say that at 5’8” and about 120 I was underweight. I don’t think I was. I was an athlete and in great shape.
Eating has always been a low priority to me. I eat because I have to.
When I was younger and I got hungry I could just ignore it and it would go away for a few hours, then come back stronger and so I’d eat a bit just to make the hunger go away. On more than one occasion I’d go to bed at night and suddenly realize I’d forgotten to eat anything that day!
Once, as kind of a competition with a friend, I went 5 days without eating. Wasn’t that hard, either.
Ever since I hit about 45 years old, though, it’s different. I get hungry to the point of screaming ravenous. I can’t ignore it any more. It’s like I’ll start trembling and get dizzy with hunger.

What changed and why?

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14 Answers

longgone's avatar

Determination to stay slim not one of your top priorities anymore, maybe?

If so, congrats. Five days?!

Dutchess_III's avatar

I never had to work at being slim. I just was. There was no motivation for not eating except I didn’t want to bother with it!

Yeah. 5 days. It didn’t leave an particular lasting memory for me, except I know that I did it. I don’t remember being hungry or anything.

Pachy's avatar

No matter how religiously one diets and exercises, changes in metabolism, sleeping habits, strength and many other bodily and mental processes are inevitable as the years pass.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I don’t like it.

Pachy's avatar

Neither do I, @Dutchess_III.

hud's avatar

Different standard of discipline

Dutchess_III's avatar

Has nothing to do with discipline Josie.

johnpowell's avatar

I’m 36 and I don’t get hungry. I have a alarm go off a few times a day to remind me to eat. I can easily go a few days without eating and not think anything of it. I have been to multiple doctors about this (even as recently as four months ago).

I can’t say why your switch flipped. But you are not alone and I hope I start to get hungry like you did.

anniereborn's avatar

Maybe it look this long for your body to realize it’s a living organism? I dunno. But I’ll say I am jealous of all those years hunger didn’t have a hold of you.

JLeslie's avatar

I have a few thoughts.

It’s possible food now triggers addictive responses in your brain. I think we can develop that (there is science supporting it). Because of the chemicals food releases in your brain, when you aren’t getting your fix you are more desparate. Again, this is just a hypothesis of mine.

Another is hormones and neural connections might have changed over time as you aged and now you simply feel the hunger more.

Another idea is that when we are young we are distracted with fun this we want to do. Mom calls us in for dinner, but we want to keep playing outside. How often when we get older are we so happy with what we are doing that we don’t want to stop to eat?

anniereborn's avatar

@JLeslie I agree with that “distracted with fun” idea. When I am at a concert or live theater show I’m often oblivious to most physical needs (other than the bathroom one at a certain point). But about a half an hour afterwards I am famished.

JLeslie's avatar

@anniereborn If that is the main reason it says a lot about what makes us fat I think.

anniereborn's avatar

@JLeslie Well, I don’t know about the main reason. But, I know it’s how it works for me. I am an emotional eater. So, when I am full of joy and happiness that void is more than filled.

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