Survey: 84 percent are really hungry

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84 percent of citizens surveyed know their "real hunger"

The first analysis of the online survey "Do you know your real hunger?" Was carried out after 212 participants and found: 84 percent of the citizens surveyed know their real, physical hunger. This preliminary result contradicts the assumption of the German Nutrition Society (DGE) that many people have lost access to the feeling of hunger. "The interim evaluation shows a first tendency that most people still seem to know their real hunger," explains Frankfurt nutritionist Uwe Knop, initiator of the online survey at For him, the survey results are a "first basis for discussion" for all nutrition experts who deal with the question: Why do we eat? Therefore, the survey will continue throughout the year in order to provide current answers in the future.

The background to this three-country citizens' survey is as follows: Numerous nutrition experts deny people in industrialized countries the ability to trust their feeling of hunger. But this general "eating incapacity" is no more than a vague assumption - because there are no current data available that reflect the "trigger of eating behavior" in this country. Regardless of this, however, it is often claimed that we have lost access to the feeling of hunger - and can no longer trust our body, i.e. our hunger-controlled eating behavior, when eating.

Only eat when you are really hungry Even the German Nutrition Society (DGE) agrees with the author's thesis Knop (2) "only eat what you feel like when you are really hungry": "Basically and his thesis is probably correct for healthy people, ”says Antje Gahl, spokeswoman for the DGE (3). But: Unfortunately, many people would have lost access to the feeling of hunger, the DGE also notes - but refers to a source that is almost a quarter of a century old (4) - so it is high time to critically question this antiquated statement, to get current answers: "Why do we eat?" For this reason, Knop asks the citizens to continue to participate in the corresponding survey.

Survey: All results at a glance The complete interim evaluation of 212 participants (75% women, 25% men) of the first D / A / CH survey "Do you know your real hunger?" Delivered the following results; Percentage in brackets after the answer, the most common answers are in bold (the answer that most likely was the one that was always asked):

1. Do you know your real, physical hunger?
o Yes, when I'm really hungry I notice that (84%)
o No, I don't know how my hunger feels (6%)
o I'm not sure (10%)

2. Why are you eating?
o Because I'm really hungry (46%)
o Because it's meal time (e.g. breakfast, lunch), even if I'm not hungry (28%)
o Mostly out of boredom, frustration, stress or habit, but without real hunger (13%)
o Out of pure pleasure in eating - no matter if I'm hungry (13%)

3. What do you trust when eating?
o I only trust my body: I ​​eat when I'm really hungry and only what I like (57%)
o I trust the usual nutritional rules when eating (e.g. DGE food pyramid, eat fruit and vegetables 5 times a day) (38%)
o I trust the latest diet guides (5%)

4. Are you feeling full?
o Yes, I eat until I am full and I feel it very well (51%)
o I feel when I'm full, but I continue to eat until almost "nothing works" (21%)
o No, I usually eat a certain amount and then consciously stop (19%)
o I don't know exactly how it feels when I'm full (9%)

5. What do you think of the common rules for a "healthy" diet?
o I'm not interested in nutrition rules (11%)
o Nutritional rules occasionally affect my food selection (68%)
o I mainly eat according to dietary rules (21%)

6. Would you like to know more about how to get to know your real hunger again?
o Yes, I would like to learn more about my real hunger in practical exercises (25%)
o I'm interested in information material that shows me how to recognize my real hunger (27%)
o No, I know my real hunger well enough (46%)
o No, I don't know my real hunger and I don't want to get to know it (2%)

All participants participated voluntarily and without monetary or other external incentives (e.g. a profit). The details of the participants were verified by the mandatory information in the email and a subsequent click link to confirm participation. This verification served to secure the information of the first 212 participants. The e-mail confirmation will no longer be necessary in the future, as this prevents many interested parties from participating. (pm)

Also read:
Nutrition: Citizens' survey started
Hunger and lust from Uwe Knop
For more mature citizens in our country
Is DGE taking action against Uwe Knop?

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