Picture this: you’ve just eaten a luxurious meal with eggplant in it. You go to get dessert, and you find that you’re feeling much too full to eat any of it.
You might not have eaten a lot of eggplant. Regardless, you find yourself wanting to skip the dessert for the time being because the meal was so satisfying.
If you thought about it anymore, you might catch yourself asking why eggplant is so filling. There is actually a reason for how good eggplant is at filling us up, and we’ll show you why.
Quick Answer: Why is Eggplant so Filling?
Several factors combine to affect how filling a food is, but chief among them is fiber and protein content. Not surprisingly, eggplant contains a decent amount of both fiber and protein, which can leave you feeling satisfied long after the meal.
What Qualities Make a Food Filling?
Since you now have a general idea of what makes an eggplant filling, let’s break it down a bit further. The following are qualities that lead to one food being more satisfying in the long run:
- Energy Density
This one is pretty self-explanatory. Protein by itself tends to fill us up more than many other nutrients, so foods that are packed full of protein tend to keep you fuller longer.
For that reason, nuts are a great thing to snack on when you’re feeling a bit hungry. Because they’re a decent source of protein, they’ll help fill you up.
The world “volume” here doesn’t really refer to the amount of food that’s being consumed. Rather, it refers to how much water or air is in the food.
Things that have a lot of water and air in them naturally have more volume. Because of this, they can feel more filling to eat.
Foods with a high fiber content tend to make us feel absolutely stuffed. Not only can they provide you with energy, but they usually take longer to digest.
Since fibrous foods might spend more time in your stomach, it makes sense that they will keep you from feeling empty anytime soon.
This one isn’t clear-cut, because it doesn’t necessarily refer to how much energy a food gives you. Instead, it means that the food in question is relatively low in calories when compared to its weight.
These foods will typically have tons of water and air packed into them, which is why they’re also lower in calories. You’ll feel full for a long time after eating them.
Highly processed foods, like the ones you’ll find in supermarkets everywhere, aren’t very filling. There isn’t any particular reason why this is the case, other than that whole foods tend to have the nutrients necessary to keep you full. Processed foods may not have the same density in nutrients.
So how well does eggplant rate in these qualities?
Eggplant, as we discussed previously, has both protein and fiber in it. Both of these things help to satisfy your empty stomach for longer periods of time.
It’s also not a food that’s highly processed. Those critical and healthy nutrients are well-preserved in it, making each plate a combination of pleasing, delicious, and beneficial for you.
The Satiety Index
We’ll stray from the core topic briefly to mention something you might not have heard about. There’s actually a rating system for how filling a food is.
To begin with, the appropriate term for how much a food fills you is satiety. An index rating the satiety of various foods was actually established in 1995 and information on it can be found here.
The official satiety index found that boiled potatoes are, by far, one of the most filing foods out there. We’re not sure where eggplant rates in comparison, but thought the satiety index was worth mentioning.
Eating filling foods is a great way to get the most use out of your money. If you’ve eaten something that’s particularly filling, you won’t find yourself burning through your snacks in between meals.
Of course, it’s healthy, too, because you won’t be snacking as much. At any rate, eggplant is perfect in this regard because it will keep you away from your pantry for hours after the meal.