6 Meals per day or Nah?
Being a fitness enthusiast has allowed me to be privy to a lot of commonly touted info about weight loss and healthy eating. This theory that you need to eat 5-6 meals per day is something that I have heard repeatedly, but is it true? Do you really need to eat this often per day to be healthy? I’m gonna go with nah. Throughout history people have been getting by with the same old 3 meals. Hasn’t science proven that people used to be healthier? Cancer and metabolic disorders have only been increasing as people try to find different ways of eating. Why change a good thing? Well it’s because some have said that it is an improvement over the traditional 3 a day. It is believed that you can increase your metabolic rate and burn more calories so, of course, many people want this because it would in turn mean that they are losing weight right?
Where did this belief come from?
There has been info passed around the fitness community about more meals helping to keep your metabolism going all day. This in turn is supposed to make people more lean and fit. But why? Why would people suddenly need to eat every 2-3 hours to survive or for optimum metabolism? They don’t. Our ancestors did not eat that frequently thus our bodies don’t require it to work optimally. There are studies that suggest that eating MORE food leads to more oxidative stress within the body. These studies also say that intermittent fasting is actually more healthy and burns more calories than frequent eating.(2, 3) Oxidation leads to cancer, so is producing oxidation throughout the whole day optimal? It doesn’t seem so. There has also been more recent research that says that there is no metabolic enhancement to eating more meals per day. It is more about the amount of calories eaten per day, so the way you split them up has little to do with enhancing fitness or “calorie burning”. That’s to say that if you eat once a day it is no different than eating your calories all throughout the day.1 Also personally I think I can regulate my meals and not overeat if I have fewer meals (and meal preps) to do. It’s so mundane and inconvenient, especially if eating the same meal several times a day…for the whole week. I’ve never wanted to eat that often unless it was junk food. 😈 How often do you eat? Did this article show you something you didn’t know? Let me know in the comments.