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GregHB

Meal Frequency

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GregHB

Hello everyone! So, as always, I've searched the forum for info on this topic prior to posting. If it's already on here, it would be great if you could point me in the right direction.

So here goes. Been doing the small frequent meal thing for many years... (5-7 a day with about 2-3 hours between meals) Fairly inconsistent results... probably because of faulty training. But not entirely unsatisfactory. Now I'm starting to read that it is a myth that small frequent meals is beneficial for fat loss and muscle gain and that three larger meals a day is just as effective. So I'm wondering what everyone's thoughts are on this.

Thanks a bunch -

Greg

PS - I'm ignorant to the Paleo diet... only just heard of it today. Will probably check it out.

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Ricky Dawson

Hello,

i can only offer my non-scientific personal results.

Since switching to 4-5 meals a day, i have had great results...

i have gone from 21% body fat to 13.% (in about 4 months) Now obviously eating the rigth foods and the right amount of calories comes into this. Traing KB circuits 3 times per week and WODs 2-3 times also. Supplemeting with Creatine and Glutamine, Zinc and Mag.

Basically on a non training day i have about 2000 cals and training days i go up to about 2300 (added protien shake)

My muscle has stayed about the same and my fat is getting lower all the time, i'm looking to get around to 10%.

I think taking things slowly and finding out what works for you. If you make good changes to lifestyle it will be the answer not short term fixes which lead to short lasting results!!

i hope this helps a little?

Regards, Ricky

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Epimetheus

I'm the furthest thing from an expert, but doesn't the small frequent eating strategy boast the benefit of keeping insulin low and steady, and keeping growth hormone levels higher? I thought it did, but I could be wrong. Someone like Ido or George might be able to provide a better answer.

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Guest Cornfed_Iowan

This is my non scientific advise as well:

I am doing six small meals a day and chalk the reasoning up to metabolism. frequent eating keeps your metabolism up and churning, burning more calories. Rather than gorging yourself...then starving....then gorging... Each time you eat after that seditary period, it is signaling your body to store as fat.

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Jason Stein

Greg,

The frequency of your meals will make no difference to weight, muscle/fat distribution, or bodyfat if the quality of those meals is poor.

To paraphrase Gary Taubes, it's not the quantity of calories you're consuming, it's the quality of those calories.

Your attention to your diet and your discipline are skills that will serve you well. However, you must first determine what you're going to eat --- this will then determine how much and how often you should eat.

You mention you've just recently discovered the Paleo diet. You might explore that method of eating, or one of the many, many similar diet philosophies.

Without boring you with details, from my personal experience, a calorie-restricted (indeed, even a calorie-counting), low- or reduced-fat diet will be a monumental waste of your time.

Good luck!

regards,

jason

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Weib
Greg,

The frequency of your meals will make no difference to weight, muscle/fat distribution, or bodyfat if the quality of those meals is poor.

To paraphrase Gary Taubes, it's not the quantity of calories you're consuming, it's the quality of those calories.

Your attention to your diet and your discipline are skills that will serve you well. However, you must first determine what you're going to eat --- this will then determine how much and how often you should eat.

You mention you've just recently discovered the Paleo diet. You might explore that method of eating, or one of the many, many similar diet philosophies.

Without boring you with details, from my personal experience, a calorie-restricted (indeed, even a calorie-counting), low- or reduced-fat diet will be a monumental waste of your time.

Good luck!

regards,

jason

sorry jason, but that information is incorrect.

Calories matter whether you like or not - albeit meal frequency are not as important as most people would like it to be.

The Minnesota experiment has highlighted the importance of how reduced caloric intake has affected lives.

There are current research and development in protocols such as intermittent fasting with very good thought laid out around workout nutrition.

one such person who has mastered this protocol is martin berkan - www.leangains.com

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Guest Ido Portal

I am not a big fan of IFasting for most people, as from practical point of view it creates a big turbulance and many problems for most people. (starts as fluctuations in blood suger and can provoke binge eating)

I am also a believer in food quality.

But...

One cannot also ignore the importance of the sheer volume of calories taken it.

The truth is rarely black or white. If it is presented as such, get suspicious!

As I have mentioned in my nutrition lecture in the first GB seminar, some people will need to factor in food quality and that will take care of everything. Some will further need some factor controling calorie ingestion. (Explains the big success of the Zone diet)

Meal frequency can blast through plateus in mass gaining and fat loss sometimes. I have seen it happen numerous times in my practice. Dont neglect this subject, but prioritizing it will usualy not place it high on the list. I agree there are more important factors to consider beforehand.

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Weib

Agreed but i work with and know people who are busy professionals.

Eating to them is a hassle by itself because of their sheer work schedule/meetings and most are ingrained with the pattern to think that 6 meals a day is mandatory if not they can't progress.

IF is one option that people can look into if they don't wish to be tied down eating at specific times or do not have time/capacity to eat around the clock.

It makes dieting more bearable for some too.

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Jason Stein

Weib,

No, I am afraid you are incorrect, or perhaps you need to read my original statement closer. I will rephrase it again. If you're eating poorly, then the amount of calories you're eating are irrelevant.

I'm also not sure to which Minnesota experiment you are referring; the Minnesota Starvation experiment from the 40s, for example, presented a lot of evidence of the negative effects of enforced caloric restriction, or starvation.

There are a host of experiments that demonstrate the middle- and long-term infeasibility of caloric restriction for either weight loss or performance gains.

The larger issue, the topic of the original query, remains the same, and my response remains the same. First sort out what you're putting in your mouth, then tweak the quantities. Or else you can enjoy yo-yo dieting, hunger pains, and perpetual stasis.

best,

jason

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Bob Sanders
Hello everyone! So, as always, I've searched the forum for info on this topic prior to posting. If it's already on here, it would be great if you could point me in the right direction.

So here goes. Been doing the small frequent meal thing for many years... (5-7 a day with about 2-3 hours between meals) Fairly inconsistent results... probably because of faulty training. But not entirely unsatisfactory. Now I'm starting to read that it is a myth that small frequent meals is beneficial for fat loss and muscle gain and that three larger meals a day is just as effective. So I'm wondering what everyone's thoughts are on this.

Thanks a bunch -

Greg

PS - I'm ignorant to the Paleo diet... only just heard of it today. Will probably check it out.

Hi Greg. Here is my take on meal frequency. Its ok to do 5 to 6 meals a day with small snacks inbetween the main meals( breakfast, lunch and dinner). But I think doing 2-3 hours is ridiculously unnecessary. What is most important is the total calories and macro-nutrients by the end of the day. So it does not matter when you eat [or what you eat :wink: ] but as you hit yout targeted colires and target macro-nutrients you are good! Let me know if that helps. :D

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robotstrong

Like Ido said, food quality is of utmost importance, as is daily caloric volume. Go Paleo. With a consistent Paleo lifestyle along with consistent training straight out of BtGB, I went from around 11 percent body fat to around 6. Any piece of information you desire to achieve your dream body is on these forums.

On another note, in the past I have been on the following macronutrient splits (carb/protein/fat): 60/20/20, 40/40/20, 40/30/30, and 50/30/20 to name a few. I was very anal about documenting and weighing my foods. With training I was able to achieve sub 10 body fat levels with all of these splits, but it was much more work than being on Paleo. My Paleo lifestyle right now has me on a rough split (if I had to guess) of about 20/30/50 and I'm at a very low body fat--the lowest I've ever been. This split may shock most people, but what's funny (and I'm sure Ido knows this) is that I'm getting more life-sustaining vitamins and minerals into my system than probably 99 percent of the population--and from raw, natural sources.

Most importantly though, diet is a holistic endeavor. It's not just about looking great. It's also about feeling great mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Many people look at diet as a means to an end. But, it's actually an end unto itself. Let food be your medicine, and medicine be your food.

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NickD

robotstrong,

Your words have only inspired me more to get aggresive in approaching this Paleo lifstyle. I keep hearing amazing things. The fact that you said you were able to get 6% body fat has me very intrigued. The lowest i have been using a regular low calorie diet is 7% and it was almost near impossible to maintain without getting sick (even on a host of vitamins). The best i can manage is 10.5%, but i feel as though this Paleo diet is the way of my future. Thanks for sharing your experience!

Regards,

Nick DeFreitas.

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robotstrong

My pleasure, Nick. It really is amazing. With a Paleo lifestyle your body will be receiving such an influx of nutrients that it will be near impossible to get sick. And on top of that your body fat will naturally drop, guaranteed.

Best of luck to you. Keep us informed of your experience.

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Bob Sanders

Robo, I don't understand. How are you getting more nutrients and vitamins on your current split. I may give Paleo a try but I disregard it in the past because I didn't like all the restriction and I like to have a cheat meal once in a while. :oops: I also don't like grocery shopping because I never liked spending too much on groceries. I dunno It's just me so I never liked buying meats and stuff. I see people buy like a loads basketful of carts of stuff but I only carry a basket and hardly even fill it from times. I've got a real problem.

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Edward Smith
How are you getting more nutrients and vitamins on your current split.

Because grains are a crap source of nutrients.

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NickD

I also don't like grocery shopping because I never liked spending too much on groceries. I dunno It's just me so I never liked buying meats and stuff. I see people buy like a loads basketful of carts of stuff but I only carry a basket and hardly even fill it from times. I've got a real problem.

My brother,

You have to change your attitude towards shopping. "i never liked spending too much on groceries" has me confused, you do not spend money on grocerys? after all, you are only wasting your time with fitness if you are not focusing on your intake. It is not hard to incorporate a health stance in your diet and still manage your wallet, it will take time to adjust but it is of the highest degree of importancce that you feed your body right. In my opinion 1/3 rd of your time should be focused on training and 2/3 rds should be on your diet. Your body will not perform without correct diet.

Guidance,

Nick DeFreitas.

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Guest Frankb85

i eat just one big meal in the evening, usually after my workout. been doing so the last 5 years. dosent matter too much when or how often you eat, but what you eat and how much. people can disagree but at least im talking from experience. its me in the avatar by the way

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Gregor
i eat just one big meal in the evening, usually after my workout. been doing so the last 5 years. dosent matter too much when or how often you eat, but what you eat and how much. people can disagree but at least im talking from experience. its me in the avatar by the way

If it would be so, I would eat 3 000 calories on one meal...

This is bad for training and body is working to much at once...

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Guest Frankb85
i eat just one big meal in the evening, usually after my workout. been doing so the last 5 years. dosent matter too much when or how often you eat, but what you eat and how much. people can disagree but at least im talking from experience. its me in the avatar by the way

If it would be so, I would eat 3 000 calories on one meal...

This is bad for training and body is working to much at once...

i eat around 4000

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Gregor
i eat just one big meal in the evening, usually after my workout. been doing so the last 5 years. dosent matter too much when or how often you eat, but what you eat and how much. people can disagree but at least im talking from experience. its me in the avatar by the way

If it would be so, I would eat 3 000 calories on one meal...

This is bad for training and body is working to much at once...

i eat around 4000

in one meal 4000calories and not gaining fat???? I don' belive you!!!!!!!

If it so, you are genetical freak (nothing bad meant)...

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Guest Frankb85

try it. it wont hurt you to gain some knowlegde

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Gregor
try it. it wont hurt you to gain some knowlegde

4000 calories :arrow: if you are ripped with 100kg and not more then 180cm

Second thing: do not respond in such harsh language.

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