The biggest challenge to eating five small meals occurs before we ever start the program. Eating through out the day is a new lifestyle for most Americans. Eating unlike exercising is something that every person has been doing since they were 1 hour old. We are changing one of the most strongly held habits that people have. Yet it is very possible to change just needs to change in the mind first. We feed babies every 2-3 hours, and our kids say they are hungry every 2-3 hours. Your body is very good at telling you when you are hungry which is why kids with no filter will make sure they let you know they are hungry. It is a decision we make as adults to not eat and cut calories and with 60% of our population overweight or obese we know how that is working. Those that accept that 5 small meals are how you are going to eat for the rest of your life are going to be the successful ones. Until you accept it you will not do what it takes to change and always find ways to sabotage yourself.
How 5 small meals work:
I want you to follow me through a typical person’s diet through out the day. We are going to start with lunch. It doesn’t matter what you eat whether it is fast food or the most whole grains and fresh vegetable you picked yourself from your garden the American’s diet of three square meals a day is an access amount of food. At 3 pm when you feel sluggish, tired, and irritable that is our food being converted into fat and stored into our fat cells. No matter what you eat if it is an access it will be stored into your fat cells. Also, at 3 pm after we have stored our food into fat we are starving. And what do we crave SUGAR. Most people make three choices here we don’t eat because eating is bad, we use caffeine to stimulate us and get us to dinner, or we each quick food mostly high in simple sugar. If you do #1 or #2 both are starving your body of energy so your body has to get its energy from some where. Your body gets its energy from breaking down your muscle tissue and converting it into sugar to utilize as energy. Muscle is what burns energy in you body so every ounce of muscle a person looses slows done their metabolism. If you picked the 3rd option, your body has lost the ability to tell you that you are full and we overeat. Also, most quick foods are high concentration of calories in small serving sizes. And then what happens to dinner, we over eat again and the cycle continues. It is not what we eat creating our obesity problem it is how we eat.
Eating 5 small meals first gives your body the right amount of energy so it can utilize it as energy and not store any into you fat cells.
The second thing your small meals keep your blood sugar regulated keeping your energy consistent which feels like more energy for those on the starving and overeating cycle. Our body wants to burn fat and when we eat through out the day our body burns fat as its main source energy all day.
What to do:
1. Plan ahead: Planning out this week’s menu is a proven way to be successful. People are not going to be able to change their habits on the fly.
2. Shop this way: If you buy things to eat for your 5 small meals at the grocery store you will have them to eat when you need them, especially your snacks.
3. Eat what ever: Eat what ever it takes to get you in the habit of eating through out the day. Once you have the habit it is a lot easier to go back and starting improving the food choices. Don’t overwhelm yourself making each meal perfect just make sure you eat every 2-3 hours.
4. Bring it with you: If you bring your lunch or snacks with you where ever you are going, you will have them ready to go when it is time to eat.
5. Meals don’t have to be cooked: There are plenty of cold meal choices you can make that can take any where.
6. Left overs: Left overs are a great way to get your meals through out the day or use them for a snack later in the week.