Do you often find yourself skipping meals to try to invoke weight loss? If so, you’re not alone. It appears to be a fairly common misconception in the world of weight loss tactics. However, what if I told you that by failing to eat regularly as you diet you are, indeed, going to gain weight later? Sound doubtful? Read on to learn more.
More than diet alone, muscle helps determine your metabolism
Let’s imagine that you hire a personal trainer to help you reach all of your fitness goals. This trainer has you doing exercises for strength training 2-3 times each week. They are helping you in shaping lean muscle mass because they know firsthand from their extensive training that muscle helps to determine metabolism.
The trainer wants you to feel fantastic about all the hard work you’re putting in every week and to reap the amazing results that you deserve. With all of the effort and time and money you invest at the gym, wouldn’t it be awesome to know that your results will be long-lasting? Rest assured, my friends, that if you skip meals they will not.
Skipping meals on your diet does your body more harm than good
We need glucose (aka blood sugar) in our bodies at any given time to fuel even our least active activities. Every three hours, our bodies consume whatever glucose we have readily available, so if we go more than three hours than that without fueling up, our bodies go into conservation mode and begin the process of gluconeogenesis.
That long term means that your body is beginning to starve. Because no glucose is available, it begins to fuel out of non-carbohydrates, like your muscle tissues. This process kicks in because glucose is the sole source of energy fueling our nervous system. If there are no carbohydrate sources found, the next best place to release it for effective use is our lean mass.
Why you shouldn’t allow your body to consume muscle
Research proves that your muscles burn calories each day while at rest. However, when you skip meals, you will cause this lean mass to be consumed in order to fuel your body.
So, for each pound of muscle destroyed, you expend fewer calories each day. Therefore, you are, in essence, training your body to slow down to store more fat.
Building up and maintaining lean muscle is an absolute must if fat loss is a priority in your life. It gets more difficult with age. Here’s why.
By the time we reach the age of 40, we naturally begin to lose muscle at an approximate rate of 8% every ten years; plus, that rate accelerates even more by age 75.
At some point, you fully recognize that the shape you want, and the body you have worked so hard to maintain, will begin to weaken on its own accord. That’s a wake-up call that reminds you that keeping your glucose levels stable enables your body to maintain the muscle you worked hard to build.
Skipping meals is a losing proposition every time.
Why you should eat 5-6 small nutrient-packed meals per day
A healthy diet is imperative. Eating small, nutrient-packed meals 5-6 times each day allows your body to stay fueled and without depleting your body of the energy it requires. This creates an optimal, stable environment in which your muscles remain intact rather than being consumed as a substitute for the healthier food that you should have enjoyed.
Do not think theses are large feasts. Instead, think of smaller portions for three meals and three nutritious snacks (think acouple tablespoons of nuts or seeds) during the day.
If you consistently workout and include a resistance training routine that builds up lean mass, eat to stay fueled frequently enough to ensure you have the energy reserves to maintain your body’s needs during your work-out.
Here’s the long story–told short. Your body consumes muscle in place of that missing food. It’s plain and simple. You must eat to feed your muscles and sustain weight loss.
Eat a diet rich in whole grains, raw veggies, lean proteins, and healthy fats
Let’s be clear. The whole eating 5-6 times every day does not license you to eat a bunch of sugan-laden junk. I’m talking about wholesome and nutrient-dense foods. Choose foods such as whole grains, raw veggies and fruit, lean proteins, and healthy fats. These are the foods that relieve you of the guilt because they promote a positive and empowering mindset when it comes to a lifelong diet adn eating plan and sustained nutritional goals.
Keeping yourself properly fueled allows your mind to stay alert and sharp because your nervous system is functioning at peak levels. Your mood is stable and optimistic because you feel alive and have energy.
Here’s the best part. Those pesky carbohydrate cravings that used to plagues you are locked away in the past now that you keep your glucose levels regulated. Your body stays strong, lean and shapely because you have now unleashed the secrets that will help your metabolism remain efficient and fast.
Now doesn’t all that advice sound more refreshing than starving yourself on your diet?