Loads of my patients skip meals. Many people think skipping breakfast and/or lunch will help them cut out the calories that cause them to gain weight. Unfortunately, for most, that does not work for several reasons. Some studies show, when the body is deprived of food (ie skipping meals) the metabolism (the body’s rate of using calories) slows. Then once a meal is consumed, the body doesn’t know when it will eat again, and thus stores that meal as fat.
But another, perhaps more common problem, is the ability to make healthy choices when hungry. I tell my patients, ” When im really, really hungry, if I were offered a pizza or a salad, It’d be awful hard to turn down the pizza. And I’m probably gonna scarf down not one piece, but the whole thing”. They usually nod knowingly.
When hunger looms, our cravings take the helm.
Most Americans consume the majority of their calories at dinner. We, as a nation, eat one enormous feast just before bed.
Put simply, the liver, which processes food we consume, cannot use more than about 500-600 calories at a time; anything more than that gets stored as fat. So when you skip a meal and then jam 2000-4000 calories worth of dinner down the food shoot, you are inundating your body with more fuel than it can handle. Thus the extra 1500-3500 calories is stored in the form of fat, adding pounds.
And it only takes 3500 calories to make a pound.
So do your self a favor. Eat something (and remember it should include a fruit or vegetable and a protein–see healthy snacks for ideas). And you’ll begin to make better choices, eat smaller portions, and more real foods, in turn making you healthier and trimmer!