Is your appetite suppressed when it’s HOT out?!
For some it is… here are some suggestions.
Picture this: you’ve just come back from a day at the beach, just finished a sweaty workout, just went for a walk in the 90 degree heat, it’s humid and you don’t have AC…
(I’m looking for an activity/situation that can leave you feeling hot and sweaty, so fill in the blank as appropriate for you!)
Do you find yourself ready to sit right down and eat a 5 course meal?!
Mmmmm, thinking about eating Thanksgiving dinner on a hot day in July…
Maybeeee you do, but for many individuals, higher heat and humidity have the potential to suppress our appetites and make eating certain things, or bigger meals, unappealing.
When I finish a summer workout, and everything including my knees are dripping sweat, I’m proud of my accomplishment, love getting sweaty, but the last thing on my mind is eating a full meal right away.
Here’s why that happens:
Not only do our typical bodily functions create heat within out bodies, but when its hot or humid out, our bodies will suppress appetites in an attempt to decrease our body heat. To add on top of that, when we sweat our bodies lose hydration, vitamins, and minerals, which can also suppress appetite.
But, we still have to eat and stay hydrated… so, what do we do?!
Here are some things you can consider to support staying fed and hydrated with a suppressed appetite:
First of all, there is no need to force feed yourself an entire meal if you’re not feeling hungry. But, we can aim to and have a nourishing smaller meal or snack every few hours at the least. Consider foods that include some water, like fruits and veggies, as they can also serve a hydration purposes.
You could also blend up a little slushy drink with watermelon, pomegranate or tart cherry juice, and a pinch of salt and/or honey! A tasty way to get in some nutrients!
Keep up with your beverages, even if you don’t feel terribly thirsty. Remember, too, that you won’t actually start to feel very thirsty until after you’ve lost 1-2% of your fluids, which is substantial. It’s best to stay ahead of it… If you’re sweating, you need water. And if you’re sweating, you likely also need electrolytes. You can help replace electrolytes (and the vitamins and minerals that are lost and suppress appetite in the first place) by adding a pinch of sea salt to your water, or having an electrolyte drink like one of these:
Eat cold foods like salads with cold protein, smoothies, sandwiches, yogurts, etc. And remember, even a few bites can be helpful. Sometimes the fact that the foods themselves are cold can make consuming them more appealing.
Have a protein shake! Not only will this make sure we’re getting a serving of protein under our belts, but also includes water or another liquid to help make sure we’re staying hydrated.
Bottom line here, if you find yourself not feeling as hungry on some of these summer days, DO NOT PANIC. It’s normal, and with a few adjustments like those mentioned above, you can still make sure you’re getting enough food and water to thrive!
I hope this was helpful, as and always, thank you for reading!
If you know of anyone who could benefit from reading this and these tips, please share!
PS—I’m curious what other nutrition- and health-related topics you’d like to read more about! Please send me a message or leave a comment with any suggestions!