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  1. #1
    Junior Bodybuilder AARONHARRISON's Avatar
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    How many times a day should I eat a meal?
    I have read the more often you eat the higher your metabolism will become from digesting all of the food.

    But I'm also afraid of getting too fat. How many meals each day is good without getting to fat?

  2. #2
    Amateur Bodybuilder Powerstroke32's Avatar
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    thats something your going to have to manipulate on your own. You can go to several websites that can calculate your cal/carb intake and what not to stay away from being fat. I myself eat about 6 medium meals through out the day instead of 3 large ones. It also depends on your goals, ofcourse if your trying to get skinny you need to take in less cals/carbs. Protein sourced food is better for you to lose weight because just the process of your body breaking down the protein and amino acids burns 3x as many cals as it takes for your body to break down lipids and other food sources.

  3. #3
    Junior Bodybuilder AARONHARRISON's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Powerstroke32 View Post
    thats something your going to have to manipulate on your own. You can go to several websites that can calculate your cal/carb intake and what not to stay away from being fat. I myself eat about 6 medium meals through out the day instead of 3 large ones. It also depends on your goals, ofcourse if your trying to get skinny you need to take in less cals/carbs. Protein sourced food is better for you to lose weight because just the process of your body breaking down the protein and amino acids burns 3x as many cals as it takes for your body to break down lipids and other food sources.

    This is a good plan. I'm going to have 3 meals and 3 snacks...that way my metabolism is always working.

  4. #4
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    I like to think of it as simple math, say you take in 800cals in one meal every 4 hours, there's only so many cals your body will use right away....lets say it uses 300, the rest is stored as fat. so by eating say 400 cals you're using most of it right away and less is going to storage, then another 400 cals 2 hours later you once again use most of it. But you still comsumed the 800 cals.
    It's obviously a little more complicated than this but it's a good example.

  5. #5
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    that not at all a good example baldie.

    if you eat more than your daily expenditure over a period of time you will gain weight.

    to think that you can only process so little food in a meal and the rest just goes to fat is ridicoulus. a bigger meal takes longer to process but if you dont overeat in total in wont make you fat.

  6. #6
    Novice vic305's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by baldie99 View Post
    I like to think of it as simple math, say you take in 800cals in one meal every 4 hours, there's only so many cals your body will use right away....lets say it uses 300, the rest is stored as fat. so by eating say 400 cals you're using most of it right away and less is going to storage, then another 400 cals 2 hours later you once again use most of it. But you still comsumed the 800 cals.
    It's obviously a little more complicated than this but it's a good example.
    I'm in agreement with ecke. Considering that the whole digestive process takes up to 24 hours, your argument makes little sense. Additionally, storing fat is not a 1 way street. Even assuming that the body worked in such a simplistic way as you put it, the fact that eating smaller meals entails eating more frequently should tell you that excess fat stored from larger meals will be burned in lieu of new calories being ingested at shorter time intervals.

    The argument for smaller frequent meals is twofold. The first thing proponents of frequent meals tell you is that by eating smaller, more frequent meals, you keep your blood sugar more constant than by eating 3 large meals. Thus, your insulin spikes are smaller, and your body is kept in a more anabolic state. The second thing they tell you is that firing up your digestive system more frequently results in increased calorie consumption, since the digestive system itself also consumes caloreis in order to break down foodstuffs.

    I personally eat 6 meals a day, but recently I've been encountering a lot of resistance to the idea that there's any benefit to eating smaller, more frequent meals. See the following page for more details:

    interesting: meal frequency, 6-8 meal recommendation a myth??? - Muscle Mayhem Bodybuilding Forums

    IMO, just the fact that there MIGHT be a benefit from smaller, more frequent meals is enough to eat this way, considering that it's not exactly the hardest thing to do.

  7. #7
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    well it's been awhile since my 1st year university nutrition class...and I may have forgotten, but doesn't your body digest the food then there's an insulin spike/blood sugar, your body stores what it can as glycogen in the muscles, then the rest is stored as fat? and yes the WHOLE digestion process takes 24 hours, but there's alot of the "digestion process" that has nothing to do with calorie uptake. the digestion process starts the second the food hits your mouth(saliva starts to break down carbs). And your body will use it's available energy before burning fat...some say it takes 20mins of areobic activity before your body starts breaking down fat.

    once again, don't exatly have my text book around, but that's some of things I remember.
    and for the record I beleive the eating more frequent meals does work. my boss eats 2-3 meals a day, i eat roughly 6-8 times a day.... and he's at least 350lbs with a ^20% BF

  8. #8
    Novice vic305's Avatar
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    ill try to explain my post again

    frequent meals:

    800 am = meal 1, 400 cals
    burn 400 cals in 3 hours, store 0 fat
    1100 am = meal 2, 400 cals
    and so on

    vs

    larger meals

    800 am = meal 1, 800 cals
    burn 400 cals in 3 hours, store 400 cals of fat
    deplete 400 cals worth of fat in 3 hours
    200pm = meal 2, 800 cals
    and so on

    Even if your body does initially store those extra 400 cals as fat, it will later burn the fat because you're not eating as often.

    The insulin thing is a whole other issue though, that is the reason why i do eat 6 times a day, just for the sake of doubt.

  9. #9
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    yea I see your point...
    two questions though....
    1: doesn't your body also break down muscle for energy?
    2: a gram of protein has roughly 4 calories and a gram of fat 8, you think this would be the same when being broken down.....does this work the same way when your bod breaks down fat?
    Last edited by baldie99; 01-21-2009 at 10:37 PM.

  10. #10
    Junior Bodybuilder AARONHARRISON's Avatar
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    I appreciate this help. I am doing something correct because I'VE LOST 4 POUNDS!!!

  11. #11
    Novice vic305's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by baldie99 View Post
    yea I see your point...
    two questions though....
    1: doesn't your body also break down muscle for energy?
    2: a gram of protein has roughly 4 calories and a gram of fat 8, you think this would be the same when being broken down.....does this work the same way when your bod breaks down fat?
    1: Yes but it wont happen to a noticeable degree if you eat enough cals daily. Remember, we spend 8-9 hours sleeping, and it seems to be the general consensus that you don't actually need to wake up at 2am to eat. Your body doesnt start wasting muscle so quickly if you eat enough.
    2: This is far beyond the scope of my knowledge, but interesting nonetheless. I know it takes calories to turn proteins into fats and then fats into glucose. Maybe 1g of protein turns into 0.5 grams of fat or something. Maybe larger meals are just digested much more slowly and as such the extra cals arent actually ever converted into fat just more slowly absorbed. Perhaps someone can offer some insight into this.

    Congratulations on your weight loss, AAron.

  12. #12
    Senior Member TheMilkMan's Avatar
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    calories consumed > calories burned = weight gain

    calories consumed < calories burned = weight loss

    It's really that simple... for what you are looking to do Aaron that's really as complicated as it needs to be. Eat when you're hungry, but eat quality calories. This accompanied with weight training and cardio will yield some great results for you.

    In general, I eat 4-6 meals a day with a couple shakes thrown in there as well. It has worked very well for me.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by AARONHARRISON View Post
    I appreciate this help. I am doing something correct because I'VE LOST 4 POUNDS!!!
    not bad, but remember, if you take a shit and haven't eaten in awhile you could loose 4 pounds. from morning to night my body weight can vary 3-4 lbs

  14. #14
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    well, for healthy diet, you should skip any meals, 3 times is normal but you may want to break it into 6 smaller meals. Instead of eating a one large, break them into 6, so that you have the similar calories across, and it speeds up your metabolism which I read a med article about that. Many people have the wrong mindset, which skip meals = losing weights. it may be true at start but, your body will soon adjust which decrease your rate of metabolism and thus you don't have the effect of it used to be.

    and the danger of this is you may end up of a yo-yo diet which you don't want.

  15. #15
    Pres. of Natty Fan Club CaptainAwesome's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MilkDaScow View Post
    calories consumed > calories burned = weight gain

    calories consumed < calories burned = weight loss

    exactly, it isnt brain surgery. you can have 3 meals a day or break it up into 300 meals a day and it will make little difference. just control the calories.

    people make up these whole notions of speeding up the metabolism with 5 meals so that they can have a job as a nutritionist or sound like they have expert knowledge. its hard to write a book saying "burn more calories than you eat and you will lose weight." thats not enough to make money off of. so they come up with all this extra stuff to solve an extremely simple problem. you are overweight? eat less!

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