Why Eat 2 or 3 Meals a Day?

Thanks to Dr. Kurt Harris from Archevore.com for providing much of the following information!

This recommendation is a cultural counterweight to all the advice you see about “frequent healthy snacks” in the mainstream media. We are told to eat frequent snacks because the standard american diet with 55% carbs has you metabolically and emotionally tethered to frequent doses of glucose.

My experience has been that without the frantic hunger of a glucose-eater, I can eat at whatever time is convenient. I eat the right types of foods, with no measurement, counting or weighing whatsoever, and I stop eating when I am satisfied. Our weights and appetites are under hormonal control, and our bodies regulate them quite precisely at given macronutrient ratios and the hormone levels that result.  On a lower than average carb diet, the character of hunger changes completely. Without swings in blood glucose, and with cellular adaptation towards fatty acid metabolism, the “sick’ sort of hunger that most people think of as hunger goes away.

Advantages of infrequent meals:

1) Enhanced metabolic training in the direction of fat metabolism

2) Lower insulin levels and fewer insulin related diseases (Metabolic syndrome, degenerative diseases, Alzheimer’s, common cancers)

3) Greater tolerance for fasting makes it easier to tolerate not eating – this give you “metabolic headroom” -it makes you more functional and resilient – You are a Porsche with a 40 gallon gas tank instead of a truck running on lead acid batteries.

4) If you exercise while fasting, the lack of insulin in the fasting state improves the fat-mobilizing and insulin-sensitizing benefits of the exercise.

Whatever you decide.  Don’t snack all day!  If you want to use the Paleo reference, Hunter-gatherers would eat a few leftovers in the morning, hunt all day and then have a big meal at the end of the day – sounds pretty similar. I doubt if in paleolithic times they very often fasted on purpose, but I do believe they were adapted to food scarcity.