Poor appetite can happen for many reasons, from depression to an under-active thyroid. No matter the cause, it should always be addressed as soon as possible. It can be difficult to eat more when you aren’t feeling hungry. However, your job is still to make sure you get the calories and nutrients your body needs. If you’re struggling to figure out how to stimulate appetite naturally, here are eight tips that will help you get started.
The remedies listed here for how to stimulate appetite naturally aren’t definitive. Speak to a professional if your case of poor appetite is serious or causing significant weight loss.
Eight Most Important Ways to Stimulate Appetite Naturally
1. Set Schedules for Meal Times
Eating meals and snacks according to a set schedule can help you if you’re having trouble figuring out how to stimulate appetite naturally. It can even make you look forward to meals.
Set a reminder on your phone to eat breakfast, lunch, dinner, and small snacks at times that will suit your lifestyle or an alarm at your desk. This is an especially useful step if you find that you forget to eat due to poor appetite. Scheduling meals and snacks works well with adding more calories to the foods you eat – there’s more on that next.
2. Add More Calories to Meals
This one seems like the opposite of all diet advice given these days. However, if you don’t know how to stimulate appetite naturally, try adding more calories to your meals and snacks. You don’t have to drench all your food in oil. Nonetheless, small steps, such as adding a tablespoon of butter to fried eggs or switching to whole milk in baking recipes, can help you get the calories you need as you work through the underlying causes of poor appetite. Choose healthy fats, such as those from fish, dairy, and nuts, to ensure that you get the calories you need.
3. Add Herbs and Spices to Food
If you suffer from poor appetite because you tend to eat very plain foods, try adding new herbs and spices to your cooking. Trying something new can often help make you hungry and look forward to eating.
Fry garlic and onions to add to potatoes or pasta. Experiment with South Asian spices like turmeric and coriander to give your meals a new flavor. You might find that there’s a style of cooking that you really enjoy. This strategy can help you eat more and help you get the the nutrients you need.
4. Eat Your Favorite Foods
Forcing yourself to eat something you don’t like won’t help you if you’re learning how to stimulate appetite naturally. Choose dishes that sound appealing to you and which make you feel hungry. Being mindful of what you want to eat can help you pick meals and snacks that will give you more calories because you’ll be eating more.
However, be aware that junk foods, such as chips or soda, are full of calories yet very little nutrients. They can be fun treats, but you shouldn’t eat more of them just because that’s what you want to eat. There must be a healthy dish that is a temptation to your taste buds.
5. Do More Exercise
Training more, especially best cardio exercises, can help increase your appetite. This is because your body will be working harder. As a result, you’ll feel a natural hunger response after you’re finished.
Try getting 30 minutes of exercise at least three times a week. This could be anything from a brisk walk, lifting weights to a run in the park – whatever you can do consistently. Always speak to a medical professional before starting a new exercise regimen, especially if you have any underlying health conditions.
6. Consider Liquid Calories
If scheduled meals and added calories aren’t helping you stimulate your appetite, consider liquid calories in the form of freshly-pressed juices, milkshakes, and supplemental nutritional drinks. You can make your own smoothies at home, adding fresh fruit and vegetables, protein powder, whole milk, peanut butter or yogurt to help you hit your calorie goals.
If you’re using store-bought juices or smoothies, make sure that they have a good balance of vitamins and nutrients. You can also check to see if they are reasonably low in sugar.
7. Use Bigger Plates
If you use small plates to eat your meals, you might be tricking your brain (and your stomach) into thinking that you’re full, even though you haven’t consumed enough calories. Using a bigger plate will make you serve yourself larger portions. This, in turn, will help you reach your calorie goals for the day.
You don’t need to eat pasta out of a serving bowl. Switching from a salad plate to a dinner plate will help you add more food to your diet and increase your appetite naturally.
8. Track Everything You Eat
Most of us eat without thinking about the food we consume, whether we have a healthy or poor appetite. Keeping a diary of everything you eat and drink each day can help you identify issues with your calorie intake. Make a note of what you eat, the portion size, and how many calories you’ve eaten for at least two weeks.
You’ll start to see patterns and habits of eating, such as skipping meals. These signs can be associated with poor appetite. Once you identify the issue, you can take steps to fix it.
We all might struggle with poor appetite from time to time, but it shouldn’t stop you from living a fuller and healthier life. Using these eight steps as a guide won’t just help you eat more. They’ll also encourage you to adopt a better diet as well, reducing the risk of vitamin and nutrient deficiencies and helping you feel better overall.
If you’ve found other successful methods on how to stimulate appetite naturally, why not share them with our readers?