I feel really hungry when I meditate
Many of us experience that. And it’s perfectly normal to feel hungry when you meditate. When you get stressed, one of the things that your body switches of is digestion. Maybe you have experienced a dry mouth with no salivation or discomfort in your stomach with bowel problems?
Our autonomic nervous system is responsible for regulating our body’s unconscious actions. Our body and mind automatically activate our sympathetic nervous system when we experience stress. The sympathetic nervous system is our alert system that assists us when we stimulate activities that activates our fight-or-flight response. The complementary parasympathetic system is responsible for stimulation activities that occur when the body is at rest, as we are when we meditate.
So, what’s happening is when you go into the relaxation response, all of those same mechanisms switch back on again. But sometimes your bodies overcompensate a little bit when going from the stress response to the relaxation response. This can make us feel especially hungry in some cases, but this is a normal experience. So, when you have that I’m hungry feeling during meditation, just remember that you are in your relaxed mode.
Meditation does not mean that you are going to get fat. You can just eat the same, it just means that your digestive system gets better and healthier as a result of not being suppressed from stress.
So, my recommendation is that you meditate twice a day with 20-minutes sessions. Once in the morning before breakfast and once in the afternoon. Your regular meditation practice will continue to reduce your stress levels. You will continue to know your mind and body better, so when you get hungry when you meditate in the future, just remember that this is perfectly normal. A consistent meditation practice will very likely be much healthier for you as a result of not being affected by stress.