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Helping the Hangry with Katie Hart
Episode 1218th April 2020 • Calming the Chaos • Tracy Kenela
00:00:00 00:22:01

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Episode Title: Helping the Hangry – Interview with Katie Hart, LMHC, Certified Nutritionist at Hartsspace


Intro: Katie is the founder of Hartsspace Mental Health and Nutrition. She believes in a whole person approach to wellness, and takes an innovative and individualized approach to providing health and wellness to each of her clients. She provides a variety of different options to help her clients manage their overall physical, mental and emotional wellbeing.


We’ll listen as Katie talks about the physiology of hunger, and how it works in the mind and the body to create the condition of “Hangry,” which is a combination of “Hunger” and “Anger.” This episode will help you become more aware of how “Hangry” can show up in your life and increase the chaos of your mind. Katie will also offer some mental health and nutrition tips, tools and techniques to help you prevent and cope with the condition of “Hangry,” when it shows up as chaos in your life.


  1. The work Katie does


  1. Dually certified as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and Certified Nutritionist


  1. Helps a wide variety of children, adolescents and adults with Nutrition and Mental Health Conditions with counseling and food-based solutions.


  1. Encourages people to explore their mental health AND Nutritional conditions in hopes to provide a nutritional foundation for wellness.


  1. Katie’s story: why use both Mental Health AND Nutrition?


  1. Her own experience taught her that when nutrition and exercise were in a more balanced state, she felt better emotionally and mentally.


  1. Her desire to share what she learned in school and in life with others who have similar struggles


  1. The physiology of hunger and increased intense emotions and how they lead to “Hangry”


  1. When we are in a “fed” state (meaning we have eaten and are satisfied), we are NOT actively seeking food. We feel calm, mainly due to the neurochemical serotonin that is released into the body during a “fed” state


  1. When we are in an “unfed” state (meaning we have not eaten and we’ve used up all our active reserves), we ARE actively seeking food. We feel more aggressive or anxious, mainly due to the neurochemical dopamine that is released into the body during an “unfed” state.


  1. The body’s physiology can absolutely explain “Hangry.” Aggression happens when out bodies are in an unfed and “food seeking” state, which makes mood hormones increase (“I need food now!”)


  1. In our world, we have food resources that are readily abundant, so in general we’re not as driven to find food because food is easily accessible.


  1. There are times when our bodies get overly hungry, which can create an “unfed” state and cause increased irritation, decreased focus, and increased activation of dopamine.


  1. TIP: Try not to judge yourself for feeling hungry. It’s the body’s way of alerting you that you are in an unfed state.


  1. Kids and Adults


  1. Kids are quicker to notice and regulate their hunger and fullness and pace themselves well. And, they are less able to regulate their emotions when their blood sugar drops


  1. Adults are not as quick to notice or regulate their hunger and fullness, and don’t pace themselves as well as kids with food and eating. And, they are more able to regulate their emotions when their blood sugar drops. But they make up for it later by overeating to the point of overfullness.


  1. Blood sugar and “Hangry”


  1. High or low blood sugar can result in an imbalance of physiology AND emotional chaos
  2. Low blood sugar happens when we haven’t eaten, and are in an “unfed” state.
  3. High blood sugar can happen when we have overeaten, and are in an overly “fed” state
  4. Low blood sugar can happen when you overeat! (a “residual reactive” low blood sugar level)



Thank you Katie, for sharing your knowledge with us! Because Katie has SO much information to offer us on the topic of Mental Health and Nutrition, we’ll have her back for Part 2 of “Help for the Hangry.” In that episode, we’ll talk more about blood sugar levels and how to regulate them using a specific combination of foods. Katie will also recommend some specific foods to have on hand to use to prevent and cope with “Hangry. She will also offer us some mindset strategies to use in times of “Hangry.”


You can contact Katie in the following ways:




Open Facebook Group and Instagram: @hartsspace


Listen to “Calming the Chaos” Podcast by visiting, or my Website: at


You can also listen on iTunes or Apple Podcasts at


Listen on YouTube at


On my website, there’s a link to a mindfulness CD I created called “On This Day.” This CD teaches you how to practice mindfulness in less than 10 minutes throughout the day. Practicing mindfulness has been shown to reduce stress and increase clear thinking in times of chaos.


You can purchase the CD on Amazon at or in digital format at


Follow me!


Facebook Open Group: Lokahi Counseling, at


Twitter (@the_calming)


Instagram (calmingthec)


LinkedIn (




Thanks for listening, and take care!