Meal Planning

The Truth About Meal Frequency

One of the often heated topics when it comes to setting up a proper diet protocol is the meal frequency debate. Should you be eating multiple small meals per day, or is it better to stick to three main meals a day instead?

You'll find people who support each end of the spectrum, and in all actuality, neither is right or wrong. Let's look at how this factors into the weight loss meals you should be creating for yourself so that you can see optimal success.

Your Schedule

The very first thing that you'll need to take into account is the daily schedule you maintain. Are you someone who can stop and eat six times a day or is this just going to cause stress and lead you to often fall off your diet plan?

What's most important on any fat loss diet protocol is that you actually stick to the diet itself, so if a high meal frequency makes this impossible for you, you're better off using a lower meal frequency instead.

Adherence is always the number one factor to consider.

Meal PlanningSource: Fitsugar.com

The Question of Hunger

Next, you also need to take into account hunger. How do the various meal frequency rates impact your hunger? Some people will find that eating frequently over the course of the day is going to influence them in a positive way and will keep their hunger under control much better.

Others will find the opposite. Instead, they'll find that eating these small meals frequently throughout the day only keeps their hunger levels higher at all times and makes them want to eat even more food.

You need to play around with meal frequencies yourself and see what works best for you. Maintaining good control over hunger is vital for succeeding with your diet plan, so learn what accomplishes this best.

Keeping Calories Under Control

As you play around with various meal frequencies, also keep in mind that your total calorie balance must stay in order as well. If you end up eating far more calories on a more frequent meal schedule because of the fact that you're eating multiple times per day, this is only going to hinder you.

For example, if you're target is 1500 calories per day and you're used to three meals of 500 calories each and then you switch to a six meal protocol but don't half the calories in each of your meals, this will lead to weight gain.

The more meals you eat, the smaller those meals will have to be.

When it Does Matter

Now, so far we've mentioned how meal frequency very much depends on personal preferences here. There are, however, a few points during the day where meal frequency does matter.

When setting up your diet meal plans, you want to make sure that you are eating relatively soon upon waking as this does tend to help you control hunger better during the day, and you also must make sure that you're feeding your body well before and after each workout session that you do.

During this time your body is going to require good nutrition, and depriving it of this will hinder your workout performance.

So there you have the main points to know and consider when it comes to meal frequency. It's really about learning your own body and what works best for you. If you eat the right calorie intake, meal frequency is going to make very little difference overall on the results that you see.