Meal Frequency for Fat Loss MYTHS!!!!
There are many different ways to set up your meals over a day, do they make a difference when your goal is Fat loss?
Not everything you’ve heard about meal frequency and your health is true.
Here are 5 myths about Meals & Meal Frequency
1. Skipping breakfast makes you fat
One ongoing myth is that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
People commonly believe that skipping breakfast leads to excessive hunger, cravings, and weight gain.
One 16-week study in 283 adults with overweight and obesity observed no weight difference between those who ate breakfast and those who didn’t ).
Thus, breakfast doesn’t largely affect your weight, although there may be some individual variability. Some studies even suggest that people who lose weight over the long term tend to eat breakfast .
What’s more, children and teenagers who eat breakfast tend to perform better at school.
As such, it’s important to pay attention to your specific needs. Breakfast is beneficial for some people, while others can skip it without any negative consequences.
SUMMARY Breakfast can benefit many people, but it’s not essential for your health. Controlled studies do not show any difference in weight loss between those who eat breakfast and those who skip it. (1)
2. Eating frequently boosts your metabolism
Many people believe that eating more meals increases your metabolic rate, causing your body to burn more calories overall.
Your body indeed expends some calories digesting meals. This is termed the thermic effect of food (TEF).
On average, TEF uses around 10% of your total calorie intake.
However, what matters is the total number of calories you consume — not how many meals you eat.
Eating six 500-calorie meals has the same effect as eating three 1,000-calorie meals. Given an average TEF of 10%, you’ll burn 300 calories in both cases.
Numerous studies demonstrate that increasing or decreasing meal frequency does not affect total calories burned.
SUMMARY Contrary to popular belief, eating smaller meals more often does not increase your metabolism. (2)
3. Eating frequently helps reduce hunger
Some people believe that periodic eating helps prevent cravings and excessive hunger, yet, the evidence is mixed.
Although some studies suggest that eating more frequent meals leads to reduced hunger, other studies have found no effect or even increased hunger levels.
One study that compared eating three or six high-protein meals per day found that eating three meals reduced hunger more effectively.
That said, responses may depend on the individual. If frequent eating reduces your cravings, it’s probably a good idea. Still, there’s no evidence that snacking or eating more often reduces hunger for everyone.
SUMMARY There’s no consistent evidence that eating more often reduces overall hunger or calorie intake. Rather, some studies show that smaller, more frequent meals increase hunger. (3)
4. Frequent meals can help you lose weight
Since eating more frequently doesn’t boost your metabolism, it likewise doesn’t have any effect on weight loss.
Indeed, a study in 16 adults with obesity compared the effects of eating 3 and 6 meals per day and found no difference in weight, fat loss, or appetite.
Some people claim that eating often makes it harder for them to adhere to a healthy diet. However, if you find that eating more often makes it easier for you to eat fewer calories and less junk food, feel free to stick with it.
SUMMARY There’s no evidence that changing your meal frequency helps you lose weight. (4)
5. Your body can only use a certain amount of protein per meal
Some people claim that you can only digest 30 grams of protein per meal and that you should eat every 2–3 hours to maximise muscle gain.
However, this is not supported by science.
Studies show that eating your protein in more frequent doses does not affect muscle mass.
The most important factor for most people is the total amount of protein consumed — not the number of meals it’s spread over.
SUMMARY Your body can easily make use of more than 30 grams of protein per meal. It’s unnecessary to obtain protein every 2–3 hours. (5)
The bottom line
Numerous myths get perpetuated about meal frequency, however, many of these rumours are not true.
For example, eating smaller, more frequent meals does not boost your metabolism or help you lose weight. What’s more, your body can absorb more than a static amount of protein per meal. (6)