I am sure that you have heard the adage, “ eat many small meals throughout the day to spike your metabolism.”
Eating multiple times per day creates havoc in your body. When you eat as soon as you wake and continue to eat all day you:
- Prevent your body from ever using its fat stores to burn energy. If you eat a diet that does not restrict carbs, glucose is introduced into your system. Your body will always burn glucose before fat.
- Drive up your insulin levels. This causes your blood sugar to spike then crash. A sudden crash in blood sugar will cause you to feel more hungry throughout your day.
- You never give your body a break digesting food. It takes up to eight hours for food to pass through your stomach and small intestines. The article from the Mayo Clinic Digestion: How long does it take highlights the fact when food enters your large intestines for eventual elimination the process can take almost two days!
Eating One Meal a Day (OMAD) Helps You Maintain Proper Weight and Body Fat
Instead of eating many meals throughout the day, eating one meal is a better option for your long-term health.
In recent years intermittent fasting has gained immense popularity. In reality, fasting is nothing new.
Before the days of agriculture, man fasted intermittently because food was not abundant.
We relied on our fat stores for sufficient energy levels. From an evolutionary perspective, our bodies have not changed much since.
We are designed for sporadic eating. We function best if our bodies are not constantly digesting food.
When you don’t allow your body to rest from digesting, you impeded cellular repair from happening.
When your body is in a fasted state, a process called autophagy occurs.Autophagy (self-eating) is your body’s natural way of ridding itself of toxins. Your body already has the tools to naturally detoxify itself.
Your cells create membranes that hunt for diseased unhealthy cells and eats them for fresh new cells. This amazing process is your body’s recycling program.
Colin Champ M.D the author of Misguided Medicine states, “Autophagy makes us more efficient machines to get rid of faulty body parts, stop cancerous growths, and stop metabolic dysfunctions like obesity and diabetes”.
Autophagy is also responsible for repairing damaged cell membranes and proteins. Constant eating shuts down the process of autophagy, especially if you consume a diet laden with lots of sugar. Eating one meal a day will maintain your weight and body fat for the long term.
Overeating will become a thing of the past
If you are eating a diet filled with whole minimally processed foods, OMAD will eliminate the need to overeat.
Eating foods from the Standard American Diet (SAD) and practicing OMAD will not help you with overeating. SAD food is filled with chemicals, bad fats, and sugars which causes cravings.
At one low point in my life when I was struggling with binge eating, I would eat one meal a day.
Eating the SAD once a day made me fatter than ever before. My whole system was inflamed with candida (fungus) caused by consuming massive amounts of sugar.
You must eat minimally processed whole foods to experience the benefits of OMAD.
When you fill your body with the necessary nutrients overeating will not be an issue.The best way to practice OMAD is to eat midday or early evening, this way your blood sugar spike is less severe.
Delaying your first meal allows your insulin to level and decreases blood sugar crashes which will make you less hungry overall.
When you eating first thing and cause a blood sugar spike, a crash a few hours later is inevitable.
Create your own whole foods diet for long-term success with OMAD
Use diets like Vegan or Paleo for inspiration in creating your own diet. Everyone is different so everyone’s diet should vary as well.
There is no one size fits all diet. Over time you will discover which foods work for you and foods that don’t.
A whole foods diet can consist of foods like:
- Organic meats- lamb, bison, grass-fed beef, duck, and turkey.
- Complex starches- Sweet potato, rutabaga, wild rice, and quinoa.
- Vegetables- Spinach, Swiss Chard, arugula, and asparagus.
- Fruit- Mango, berries, papaya, bananas, dates, and pears.
- Natural Sweeteners- Maple syrup and local honey.
Starting OMAD can be quite intimidating. Personally, I practiced the 16:8 way of eating (eating two meals a day) for over a year before switching to OMAD.
I thought that OMAD as too extreme. As I got used to fasting for 16 hours, I was able to gradually extend my fasting time.
I also noticed that a few times a week I need to eat two meals in a day. Eating two meals a few times a week ensures that I am getting enough calories and nutrients to match my activity level.
If you are very active, eat two meals a day a few times a week. This way you avoid overeating from the need of extra calories.
Start with eating two meals a day if you are new to fasting. Simply skip breakfast and see how you react.
Once you have mastered eating two meals, experiment with OMAD. Both forms of fasting are beneficial for your long-term health.
Over time will become more in tune with your body. With a bit of trial and error, you will find the fasting schedule that best suits you.
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