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'Six small meals a day' myth

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  • 'Six small meals a day' myth



    I have a friend that I am trying to share Primal/Paleo with.

    He's very open minded and can understand the saturatedfat/cholesterol thing.

    However he still thinks we should "eat 5-6 meals a day".

    He claims it will "keep his metabolism up"...which i know is BS.

    But i couldn't remember why.


    I've tried explaining the aspect of insulin staying too elevated with that approach but he's not fully sold yet.


    The search function isn't all that great so i couldn't find anything with that.

    Can anyone else help me win this "argument"!?

    What other reasons are there to eat only 2 or 3 meals a day?

    semper ad meliora

  • #2
    1



    I actually have a friend that claims to be into health but eats the crappiest food and also ascribes to the "5-6 small meals a day" plan. I got in a heated argument with him about this the other day (because we already argue about everything) and he pulled the "not everyone's the same" card on me. Sure, but... come on.

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    • #3
      1



      lol...well of course.

      As with any CW "junk", i'm sure some people are successful with it....but how sustainable is it to eat that often!?!?! especially if you're eating whole foods in which you have to prepare/cook yourself!?


      My friend formerly worked for a major smoothie chain...and is a little brainwashed with bodybuilder type propaganda. "5-6 meals a day", gotta drink the newest and greatest protein shake/supplements after each workout, blah blah blah...


      But he is very open minded so I'm starting to show him other theories (Primal!) that work too (not to mention more sustainable).

      semper ad meliora

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      • #4
        1



        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19943985?ordinalpos=&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.P ubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.SmartSearch&log$=citatio nsensor


        5-6 meals a day was created out of context then used to sell protein shakes. This myth has been in the bodybuiling scene since the 80s.

        Don't be a paleotard...

        http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/nut...oxidation.html

        http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/nut...torage-qa.html

        http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/fat...rn-fat-qa.html

        http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/nut...-you-need.html

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        • #5
          1



          Comes from the idea that your body can only absorb so much protien at a time so for muscle building, you want to hit that # every 3 hours or so.


          Also suppose to speed up metabolism


          Can't confirm or deny either.... that's just what I've been told

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          • #6
            1



            http://leangains.blogspot.com/2008/07/excerpt-from-my-upcoming-book.html


            Explains it better than I can.

            Don't be a paleotard...

            http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/nut...oxidation.html

            http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/nut...torage-qa.html

            http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/fat...rn-fat-qa.html

            http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/nut...-you-need.html

            Comment


            • #7
              1



              Of course I thought 5-6 meals a day was a good thing until I got here and started reading through all the great links people post.

              Don't be a paleotard...

              http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/nut...oxidation.html

              http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/nut...torage-qa.html

              http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/fat...rn-fat-qa.html

              http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/nut...-you-need.html

              Comment


              • #8
                1



                I just did some reading about it. Love this quote explaining the difference between eating 6 small meals or 3 large ones and the effect between blood sugar levels and metabolic "fire".


                "you could throw pebbles in a pond several times to keep the ripples going...

                or you could just throw a really big rock in and leave it alone!"

                semper ad meliora

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                • #9
                  1



                  Brad Pilon of EatStopEat has a great monologue where he explains that eating 6 small meals might be fine if you're a big guy eating 3000+ calories a day for 500 calories a meal, but if you're a small female eating 1500 or less, then you get stuck with a bunch of 250 calorie meals and that sucks. Been there. Done that. He's right--it sucks. You feel like you're single-handedly keeping Tupperware and Ziplock bags in business.


                  I also love Pavel Tsatsouline's endorsement of Ori Hofmekler's book: "I refuse to graze all day. I have better things to do. I choose The Warrior Diet."

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                  • #10
                    1



                    I used to be part of the "6-meals" club too. I bet I can still tell you what I ate on a daily basis.


                    A protein shake for my post-run breakfast.


                    A kashi TLC granola bar.


                    A Lean Cuisine.


                    A cup of yogurt.


                    An apple and 22 almonds.


                    A small, sensible dinner (like a piece of bland fish and broccoli.)


                    I ate that stuff day in and day out, while running 6 miles a day, every day. No wonder I don't do it anymore.


                    Lately I've been eating just a single meal a day. With working 2 jobs, it's just too much work even if I wanted to package up all those snacks. Forget it! I get up, fly out the door (with some coffee if I'm lucky), work until sundown, and eat dinner when I get home.


                    Today: 1 raw egg (running between jobs, starving) & 4 ounces of prime rib and some mushrooms, half a slab of ribs, and a bowl of broccoli smothered in mushrooms.


                    I definitely prefer one big meal versus all the little snacks. Lots more fat and flavor too. It saves so much time and money just to eat when I get home at night. Plus I feel better.

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                    • #11
                      1



                      Me too, Diana!

                      It's so much more fun to wait, and eat when you're home and relaxed. I made a Meatza tonight ;-)

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                      • #12
                        1



                        Eating 6 meals a day is useless for the metabolism and it's not true we need a constant supply of nutrients.


                        But it's neither harmful or glycemic raising. That's not true as well. Simply more insulin few times a day or very little insulin more times a day, is still the same amount of insulin. Meal frequency has no effect either in positive or negative, the hormonal synthesis and energy balance effect if exactly the same. What matters is the total amout of carbs and food at the end of the day or in 24/48 hours period, not what happens to a meal basis. In fact it's also not true that certain meals are fattining as fat storage is an ongoing process occurring all the time, even after you have eaten nothing but 4 eggs. What matters is the end result balance between storage and burning at the end of the day.


                        Eating often is still an useful approach for those people who are sensitive to the effect of a full stomach or to the epinephrine release after a big meal.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          1



                          Diana - goodness, that was me too. I was a cardio bunny, nibbling on air-popped popcorn and wholegrain ryvita crackers.


                          I remember my mum would say, "Is that all you're eating? Then I'd reply, "Don't worry, I'm going to eat again in three hours". She thought it was bizarre, and I didn't blame her. LOL


                          Primal, intuitive eating = natural, flexible, less stress, less preoccupation with food.

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                          • #14
                            1



                            OMG, exactly... and I always kept an emergency "soy joy" bar in my car in case I couldn't go right home and eat after work. If I didn't eat on schedule I got cranky SO bad.

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                            • #15
                              1



                              haha allie and DR... I was so there with you. I'd eat 5-6 times a day, maybe 200-300 calories each time (If I was making something with pasta or rice for dinner, which was pretty often - I'd try to keep all my other "meals" to 150-200).


                              It was like...


                              breakfast: half to 2/3 serving of cereal (yes, i cut the serving size of cereal so it would be in my caloric allowance for that "meal") with skim milk, measured carefully


                              snack: crackers and cheese / raisins / small thingy of yogurt / goldfish crackers / whatever


                              lunch: 2 hard boiled eggs with vinegar and salt, maybe with leftover asparagus or green beans from the night before


                              snack: popcorn or a few crackers with cream cheese or a small bowl of cereal ... notice a carby pattern?


                              dinner: usually pasta or rice with veggies and some sort of sauce. I very rarely made meat. It was a treat for my husband when I did - I couldn't have cared less other than the occasional delicious steak.


                              It was a VERY sad way to live... while I was eating each "meal" I was already planning out the next one. How many hours until I'd eat it, what it would be, how many calories, etc.

                              And like DR if I missed one? Oh geez, things were BAD...

                              Eating lots but still hungry? Eat more fat. Mid-day sluggishness? Eat more fat. Feeling depressed or irritable? Eat more fat. People think you've developed an eating disorder? Eat more fat... in front of them.

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