Having 3 good quality meals a day is beneficial for many reasons:
Three balanced meals a day will give you the necessary energy to perform your daily tasks. A balanced meal is one that contains plenty of protein, fat, and a paucity of high glycaemic carbohydrates. That precludes cereal and bread and all processed foods. You will be less prone to energy dips, mood changes and reaching for sugar and coffee if you have three good quality meals a day.
If your three meals are well spaced, it gives your body ample time to digest your meals thoroughly. This means you have a better chance to absorb nutrients from your food. It also gives your digestion a rest, and time to build ample hydrochloric acid ready for the next meal. Your digestion is done by your stomach, small intestine, pancreas and liver. Just like we need a rest from activity, so do these very important organs.
Every 90 minutes there is a wave (called the migrating motor wave) that sweeps through your digestive tract. It helps to keep bacteria in the correct place, which is further down the intestines in the colon. When there is food in your digestive tract this wave is disrupted, making you more prone to small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO.) Some common symptoms of SIBO include bloating, excess gas abdominal pain and diarrhoea. This can lead to leaky gut, allergies and many other health concerns. We know many ways to treat SIBO. One is to get people to have breaks between eating. This allows the migrating motor wave to perform its task.
Insulin is a hormone that is released after eating in response to sugar. It helps regulate blood sugar levels. Insulin messages the muscle and fat cells to uptake glucose from the bloodstream. If there is too much insulin in your blood for prolonged periods (hyperinsulinism,) it messages your body to store sugar. This makes it very difficult to lose weight. Hyperinsulinism can also trigger bouts of low blood sugar (hypoglycaemia,) which can cause more craving for sugar, brain fog and irritability. It is as if the patient becomes addicted to sugar just to feel well.
With too much snacking on sugary foods, excess insulin circulating around the body leads to a decrease in insulin receptor sensitivity. We become insulin resistant. This means we end up with even more insulin in the blood telling the body to store fat, particularly in the abdomen. This makes it increasingly difficult to lose weight. It also makes us more prone to develop diabetes and other inflammatory diseases.
It makes good sense to enjoy three, well spaced, low sugar meals a day! All aspects of your general health will improve! You will also find it easier to keep weight off.
Our naturopaths often works in collaboration with one of out holistic doctors at the surgery. We think we are very good at helping people lose weight.