One of the oldest clichés you will hear in relation to
eating for muscle mass or fat loss is this – DO NOT MISS A MEAL! Even the great
6 times Mr Olympia Dorian Yates stood by this, as do many of his piers both
past and present. I for one also preach this rule to my clients, but I often
hear the somewhat inevitable query – why? With that said I want to give you 5
solid reasons why you should never miss a meal if building muscle or burning
fat is your goal!
One of the huge benefits of eating every 2-3 hours is that
your blood sugar levels remain steady. The protein in the meal will help
stabilise blood sugar levels which will drastically suppress the desire for
sugars. If complex carbohydrates are part of your diet, having low GI
carbohydrates will also help keep you feeling full. People who cheat on their
diet often miss meals, which lead to them craving sugary foods because their
blood sugar levels plummet. Moral of the story, don’t miss a meal!
Missing a meal will inevitably lead to catabolism – whilst
there are some ‘’faddy’’ trainers who claim to be experts opposing this
argument they fail to show physiques which support their theories. When you
miss a meal the amino acid feed within your blood stream becomes depleted which
can make your muscles vulnerable to catabolism setting in. Eating every 2-3
meals with high volumes of protein (1.5-2g of protein per pound of body weight
each day) will help ensure the muscle receives adequate levels of protein.
Eating regularly helps keep the metabolism firing. As the
body digests food a process known as peristalsis occurs which stimulates a
large calorie expenditure. In most cases it is safe to say by eating regularly
you can increase the number of calories you burn on a daily basis by at least
Sustaining high energy levels is essential simply because when
the clock strikes gym time you need to ensure you are training at an intensity
which will force the body to change! So many people are malnourished before
they train leading to mediocre intensity in the gym at best which compromises
their results. Eating regularly will help prevent blood sugar crashes and dips
in energy levels.
To optimise fat loss and muscle growth you want to ensure you
insulin sensitivity is maximised. Eating regularly helps control blood sugar
levels which has a direct correlation with your insulin levels.
There are 5 very compelling reasons as to why you should
continue to eat regularly. As a rule of thumb you should eat every 2-3 hours,
not allowing your body to go beyond 180 minutes without food!