People ask me all the time how many meals should I be eating in a day?
Some say only eat during a certain period of time.
Some say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, you can’t skip that.
Some say eat 6 times a day to keep metabolism burning.
So what is the answer? When should we eat?
Well.. do you want the short answer or the long answer?
Does meal frequency speed up the metabolism?
The total amount of food consumed that determines the amount of energy expended during digestion.
Therefore, eating 3 meals of 800 calories will cause the same thermic effect as eating 6 meals of 400 calories. There is literally no difference. As long as you are in a calorie deficit you will still lose weight.
Multiple studies have compared eating many smaller versus fewer larger meals and concluded that there is no significant effect on either metabolic rate or the total amount of fat lost.
Is breakfast really the most important meal of the day?
There is no evidence that breakfast “jump starts” metabolism and makes you lose weight.
Nevertheless, eating breakfast may benefit certain aspects of health. It appears that the body’s blood sugar control is better in the morning so people who are diabetic may be advised to eat breakfast to help with their blood sugar levels. Therefore, having a high-calorie breakfast results in lower average daily blood sugar levels compared to eating a high-calorie dinner.
But as general advice: If you are not hungry in the morning, skip breakfast. Just make sure to eat healthy for the rest of the day.
Does fasting help with weight loss?
Studies on short-term fasting show that the metabolic rate may actually increase in the beginning. The approach will not put you into starvation mode and make you lose your precious muscle mass.
Additionally, studies in both humans and animals show that intermittent fasting has various health benefits, including improved insulin sensitivity, lower glucose, lower insulin and various other benefits.
Intermittent fasting also induces a cellular clean-up process called autophagy, where the body's cells clear waste products that build up in the cells and contribute to aging and disease.
The bottom line and short answer
There are no health benefits to eating more often. It doesn't increase the number of calories burned or help you lose weight.
So what should you do?
When hungry, eat
When full, stop
Find the process that works for you. Eat when you can and when you want to. Most of our eating is mental so be sure you are actually hungry before you put food into your mouth. If you like fasting then fast. If you like eating small meals throughout the day then do that. If you’re a breakfast lover then eat it. It’s a lifestyle that you must create and implement consistently.
*To ensure proper weight loss or gain you need to put your body in a surplus or a deficit that’s specific to your body and goals.
If you would like to get started on creating your custom plan contact us today !