What we do know from lots of scientific research, based on real life studies is….
There is VERY little evidence to suggest that eating 6 meals a day compared to 3 will BOOST your metabolism.
There is also VERY little evidence to suggest that skipping breakfast will SLOW your metabolism.
So why do we recommend that establish a food routine? Well, we do know this….
There is universal acceptance that the amount of calories you consume in a day affects your weight and there is a HUGE amount of research which says that skipping meals leads to HIGHER DAILY CALORIFIC INTAKE.
According to lots of studies, breakfast is really important and the chances are that if you skip breakfast, you will eat more calories in a day than if you eat a healthy breakfast.
It may seem counterintuitive, but skipping meals can actually hinder your weight loss. By skipping meals during the day you’re likely to become extremely hungry, which can lead you to make poor food choices or overeat later. In addition, eating breakfast and the right foods can help you stay fuller longer. This helps you stay on track for your weight loss goals.
Whether you’re filling up on fresh and free foods or enjoying a snack, it’s important to eat healthy snacks in between meals. The same principles that apply to skipping meals also apply to snacks; they keep you experiencing a dip in blood sugar (and energy),
If you’re just starting a planned weight loss program, you may be surprised at the sheer volume of food—meals, snacks, free foods and even desserts—that make up your daily plan. You may even feel that you’re eating too much!
But trust us: over time, eating more of the right things and less of the wrong things will help you distinguish between cravings (which typically pass in about 15 minutes) and real hunger.
If your meal plan calls for added vegetables or piece of fruit, don’t skip it! It’s an important part of your nutritional intake for that day.
Food Routine Elements
- Planning. All good food routines start with planning. So, either follow a food plan provided by a professional or take some time to make a food plan of your own.
- Preparation. Make time to prep foods as much as you can. Schedule this in to your diary.
- Tracking. Make sure you track what you eat, but also why. Find out if your poor meals are due to lack of preparation or if you have certain meal times where you eat poorly.
- Practice mindful eating.
- Brush your teeth after your evening meal
- Consistency is key. Stick to the plan 6 days out of 7
How often should I eat?
his is a common question many people have when starting their weight loss journey.
You have got several options.
- 3 meals and 3 snacks. Evenly Spaced calories. Regulated insulin and hunger
Your meal frequency should be spaced out and snacks at regular intervals, about 2-3 hours apart. Example: if you have breakfast at 7 a.m., you can enjoy a snack at 10 a.m., lunch at noon, your afternoon snack at 3 p.m. and dinner at 7 p.m and a night time snack before bed around 9-10pm. Make sure your night time snack does not contain many carbohydrates (keep it under 20 grams) or your body will not burn fat in the night.
- 2-3 meals and informal snacks
If you are never hungry at breakfast, don’t always force yourself to eat it. Try it out but don’t worry if you can’t do it. Get a snack mid morning or when your body wakes. Eat 2 good sized meals but again limit your carbohydrate intake later in the day to prime your body for burning fat.
- Time restricted feeding
Another food intake strategy that is gaining support is called Time-Restricted Feeding and we all do this to a certain extent (we don’t eat while we sleep). This uses our bodies natural circadian rhythm and metabolism to help you achieve your weight loss goals. Essentially, there is a 12- hour nourishment period during the day to consume your daily calories. After that, your body goes into a 12-hour rejuvenation period. This rejuvenation period is especially important and beneficial to weight loss, as your metabolism naturally slows down at night. This is why late-night eating stacks the deck against you. An example of eating timing could be that you start the day with breakfast at 7 am and finish eating all your meals by 7pm. Brush your teeth straight away and get ready to burn fat all thought the night!
PICK A ROUTINE AND STICK TO IT FOR A PERID OF AT LEAST 2 WEEKS TO SEE WHICH WORKS FOR YOU.
Picking a routine and sticking to it is going to be hugely beneficial for a number of reasons.
- Control Hunger
- reduce over eating later in the day
- less likely to overeat during any one meal