Excerpt Health Matters

Now available at www.HealthMattersBook.com

By Rosie Bank

Copyright @ 2016 Rosie Bank

All rights reserved. No copying or duplicating any portion of this excerpt is allowed without the consent of the author.

Week #44
Wait Until You Are Hungry

1 billion people in the world are chronically hungry. 1 billion people are overweight.
(Mark Bittman)

By now, your body knows the difference between empty-belly hunger and the urgency that comes from the absence of available blood glucose. The latter is not hunger in the sense that you are out of food. But you are certainly out of fuel. It is often referred to as a crash, when the level of glucose in your blood plummets. It’s useful for you to know the difference. Being able to wait until you are hungry to eat teaches some important lessons:

  1. To be more aware of your body
  2. To learn the effect that different kinds of food have on your appetite, satiety, and energy level
  3. To support normal and ideal hormonal function
  4. To support optimal digestion and absorption of your food
  5. To remain free from food as a distraction until your belly is empty
  6. To get more done and have more fun

These last two goals are personal to me, and perhaps they are to you, too. They represent being able to live and enjoy life, without the distractions of food. I think of this as keeping food out of our way but having it available when it is time to refuel and refill.

Personally, I enjoy the feeling of being empty-belly hungry for a variety of reasons. First, I know that my body has done a good job of using up the energy that came from burning calories from the food I had eaten earlier. Next, I get excited to eat. It is the most natural thing in the world to have an appetite in response to my empty stomach telling my brain that it’s time to fill up again. And last, I enjoy realizing that three, four, and sometimes five or more hours have passed since the last time I ate and that I have been in production mode. Since I was addicted to food in the past, to this day, I enjoy the freedom to stay focused.

An efficient metabolism enables you to go three to five hours after you eat before you are hungry again. This means that you are extracting energy from your food properly, that the energy is sustained, rather than spiking up and crashing down, and that you might be making good decisions about what you are eating.

Here is an example. In theory, and consistent with what foods from different food groups do after you eat them, if you have potato chips and a candy bar for lunch, you would probably be much hungrier much more quickly than if you had a green salad with a scoop of salmon, some avocado, and some dry roasted almonds. The chips and candy will cause a rapid rise in your blood sugar.

By now you know that your blood sugar can rise more rapidly in the absence of foods that complement the carbohydrates, namely fats and proteins. The faster your blood sugar rises, the faster it comes down, and you run out of energy even if there is still food in your stomach. This is the infamous late-morning crash, which happens a couple of hours after a breakfast of coffee, orange juice, and a bagel.

The salad, salmon, nuts, and avocado contain a terrific combination of proteins, complex carbs, heart-healthy fats, and lots of fiber. Fiber slows down the absorption of carbohydrates, which is another way of saying that you have more sustained energy. Do you remember this from Week #5, “Eat Your Veggies.”

Finish Digesting

What does this have to do with waiting until you are hungry before eating? In his brilliant book, Mastering Leptin: Your Guide to Permanent Weight Loss and Optimum Health, Byron J. Richards encourages his readers to allow their bodies to complete the digestion process from one meal before they crank it up again by taking in additional food. The information in this book inspired me to allow one meal to finish moving through my digestive organs before beginning another. If you practice this, you might find how much better a meal is received by your body if it is not still dealing with the previous one. This is a powerful weight loss strategy because it encourages you to become sensitive to hunger and satiety.

The digestion process has many mini steps, from opening the tube at the mouth to eliminating at the other end. And these processes rely on a variety of biochemical juices and hormones in our bodies that play specific roles at specific times. If your body is in the middle of digesting your food and you try to reset it from the beginning, this might tax your body and compromise optimal digestion, absorption, and elimination.

Taking in food before you are hungry is not a felony. But it is not ideal. Aren’t we shooting for astonishing Do you like the idea of putting your food to work for you and letting your body do its thing before you interrupt its natural rhythm

This week, give yourself the gift of tuning in yet again. You have already learned how to nourish your body in new ways. While you maintain this practice, take yourself to the next level. Learn to listen to the subtle messages that your body is designed to give you. By now, those of you who formerly had issues with blood sugar and energy levels are probably thriving. This lesson is an invitation for you and your body to become more in sync. Just as you have learned to stop before you were stuffed, learning to wait to eat until you are hungry is a higher level of performance.

Get Hungry

Some of my clients have no idea what hunger feels like. They have never experienced hunger. People have told me that they dread hunger, that they do anything to avoid it. I believe this is a mistake. Being hungry a few hours after you eat is as natural as having to pee. To categorically avoid this most natural sensation (and that is all it is) means to skip over how our bodies are designed to function. Haven’t you come too far to allow this to happen?

In my erstwhile food-addiction days, I had no idea what hunger was. Noticing these natural cues from my body became essential to allow me to get free. I believe you will find something similar.

HungerBefriend your hunger. Get to know its message and nuances. For some of you, having an experience of real, physical hunger that comes from your body and your stomach will be sensational. How would you describe how it feels to be hungry? What are the sensations in your body that tell you that your stomach is empty? Knowing that you will not starve, is there anything pleasant about an empty belly hunger

If this is something you have avoided in the past, it might be a breakthrough for you to understand that your hunger is an acceptable experience and a message from your body. Since no one reading this book is at risk of starving to death, experiencing hunger will broaden your body awareness, especially if you have avoided this sensation in the past.

physical sensation of hungerLearn to distinguish the physical sensation of hunger from the thought or impulse of wanting to eat, which is completely different. The latter is in your head. It is different from the former, a bodily sensation. If you do hear that thought, check in with your stomach. You may experience physical cravings as well. As you can see, you have a lot to sort through all part of your self-and-health mastery

Also, waiting until you are hungry is different than being too busy to eat, or overriding, ignoring, or dismissing your body’s hunger signals. Dismissing hunger is not a healthy practice. If you are busy and you are hungry, but you would like to finish a project you are working on or for some other reason postpone eating (perhaps you want to finish writing a blog post or wait thirty minutes to meet your friend for lunch), a big glass of water tastes delicious and effectively enables your body to wait without punishment.

What others are saying about Health Matters:


In a world of superficial fixes that usually leaves us feeling disappointed, Integrative Nutrition Coach Rosie Bank offers 52 distinctions to help us create lasting change in our health, both body and mind. In a world of noise and confusion, where conflicting ideas clamor for our attention, Rosie’s steady voice of experience and insight brings clarity and confidence when it comes to creating a healthy life. If you are looking for a guide to help you take better care of yourself, then let Health Matters be your coach for the whole year.

Dr. Steve Hryszczuk, Author of Royalty Income: The Business of Getting Paid More Than Once


Health Matters is a great book to support you to step into the best version of yourself. I love the time-released formula that allows you to go step by step on an adventure of self-discovery. Each week offers practices that build on the previous weeks. It is written in a clear and practical way. As Rosie will show you, achieving vitality is not about being perfect, but about learning and building habits for optimal health in a supportive environment. Rosie Bank is a reliable guide. Reading and implementing these lessons will help you get dramatic improvements in your health and life that you can sustain for an indefinite period of time.

Dr. Karen Wolfe, MBBS MA, Author of Is Your Lifestyle Killing You8 Simple Steps for Lasting Weight Loss and Optimal Health


As a medical professional, I am absolutely enthused with Rosie’s work, Health Matters. This is a book that I wish I had 20 years ago, one that I could recommend to my patients as a week-by-week guide to the body, mind, and life that people want. I love how she starts with the concept that you are already good enough and lovable and without judgment guides you with easy-to-follow weekly concepts and assignments that will result in your getting what you want. This is more than a don’t do this but do that kind of book. It is one of self-reflection, changing beliefs about what is holding you back, and the simple, steady steps you can follow to bring about lasting results. I believe everyone can benefit from Rosies book. Learning about and applying true medical and psychological action steps in most areas of your life will create lasting results for an energetic mind and body. It is my belief that this book should not be on everyone’s shelves, this book should be in everyone’s hands, to be utilized, studied, and followed.

Ladd McNamara, MD, Author of Cholesterol Conspiracy


Sustainable long-term life changes are best achieved by a series of successful small steps, rather than one great leap that falters. Rosie Bank has created a smart, strategic guide to lead readers through 52 weeks of steady, small steps to improve their health over a year. Rosie’s intelligent, science-backed discussions regarding behavior, psychology, nutrition, exercise, sleep, and relationships make you feel like you are sitting next to her and she is giving you a personal consult. Her guidance is motivating and she provides the tools you need to make the changes you desire. Health Matters is a wonderful program to help you recover your health and discover the most that you can be.

Susan M. Kleiner, Ph.D., RD, FACN, CNS, FISSN, Author of Power Eating, 4th ed.


Knowing just how important our health is, what stops people from making health a top priority? It is not a lack of ability, it is a lack of motivation. We just get scared and tired of sifting through the plethora of health solutions marketed to us every day. Rosie Bank’s Health Matters is the answer to this problem. Rosie has passionately and clearly created a path towards better health that we can follow. As you implement her simple strategies, your health will improve. As your health improves, life will begin to look brighter as you step into your role of impacting the lives of people around you.

Jordan Kemper, Founder of OneBody International


Every once in a while a book comes around that really speaks to you. Rosie Bank’s Health Matters is one such work. We have been fortunate to preview and enjoy the benefits of following the recommendations in Health Matters. As a Physician and as a Health Coach we feel the lessons and wisdom Rosie brings to the table will benefit many. We will be using her carefully laid out step by step and week by week program of self-acceptance, reflection, and growth to create the lasting lifestyle change for our patients and clients. We recommend Rosie’s Health Matters to anyone who looks to utilize motivational behavioral change to create positive lifestyle transformation for themselves or in their practice.

Peter W. Rugg, MD, FACEP, Assistant Professor, University of Massachusetts Medical School

Patti Rugg, Certified Holistic Health Coach, AADP


Rosie Bank leaves no stone unturned in this complete guide to creating the healthy life you desire. Her non-dogmatic, practical approach is guaranteed to guide anyone who actively participates for 52 weeks to vibrant health.

Deborah Kern, Ph.D.,

Author of Everyday Wellness for Women and Create the Body Your Soul Desires


As a pediatrician who also treats teens with eating disorders, I know that children see what is modeled by their parents. Making sure that you, as an adult and potentially as a parent, are well-balanced when it comes to health, is extremely important. In Health Matters, Rosie Bank’s wisdom, based on what she learned from battling and then overcoming an eating disorder from the past, creates an inspirational message, especially for parents who have their own issues around nutrition. Making small changes on a weekly basis and not striving for perfection are important lessons that Rosie teaches. Incorporating the lessons in Health Matters will not only change your life but can change the life and health of your children as well.

Christine Wood, MD, author How to Get Kids to Eat Great and Love It


“What I love most about Health Matters is not the bounty of gently wise health advice, or even the wonderfully bite-size morsels in which that good counsel is served. Rather, I love that Rosie recognizes health as being in the service of living well. This is really a book about many ways to have a better life. It is accessible, sensible, and empowering- but above all, it is indelibly human.”


David Katz, MD, MPH, FACPM, FACP, Yale University School of Medicine, author Nutrition in Clinical Practice


I tell my patients that achieving great health is best treated as a project. Give yourself one year of implementing the lessons in Health Matters to help you build habits that will last a lifetime. Rosie Bank sorts through the overwhelming amount of health information that’s out there and turns it into weekly “bite-sized” chapters with knowledge and practices that are easy to start and maintain. Health Matters is fun and fact-filled! Thank you, Rosie, for helping us find freedom around food, nutrition, and optimal health.

Liz Lyster, MD author, Easy Guide to Menopause


“Fantastic! Finally, a program that will change you, not in 30 days, but in a year. This is not only realistic, but it is a plan that almost anyone can implement. Rosie does an outstanding job of guiding and coaching you along the way. A true expert is one who has already done this and succeeded, and now wishes to pass knowledge to others, which is exactly what Rosie does in Health Matters. This is a book that is full of solid facts instead of media hype. I simply love it and its simplicity. Thank you, Rosie, for helping to change lives in a fun and interesting way.” 

Sue Ward, MS – Integrative and Functional Medicine Nutritionist, Sanoviv Medical Institute

With love and encouragement,


Rosie Bank


Board Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach

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