Why Skipping Meals Does Not Help With Weight Loss

Are you guilty of skipping meals? If so, you aren’t alone. It seems to be a pretty common misconception in regard to weight loss tactics. But what if I told you that in fact by NOT eating you were doing much more harm than good and setting yourself up to actually gain weight later on? If you are doubtful, read on.

Muscle helps determine metabolism

Let’s say you have hired a personal trainer to help you reach your fitness goals. This trainer has you doing all sorts of strength training 2-3 times per week. They are helping you build lean mass (muscle) because they understand that muscle helps determine metabolism. They want you to feel good about the hard work you’re putting in and the results you are on your way to seeing. With all of the time and money spent on what you are doing in the gym, wouldn’t it be nice to know that your results will last? Well…if you skip meals they won’t.

Skipping Meals Does More Harm Than Good

We need glucose (blood sugar) in our bodies at all times to fuel even the most passive activity. Every 3 hours or so we use up whatever glucose we have available, so if we go longer than that without food, our bodies go into starvation mode and begin the process of something called gluconeogenesis…which I will simply define as “creating glucose (blood sugar/energy) out of non-carbohydrate matter, such as muscle”.

Glucose is the only source of energy our nervous system relies on and if there isn’t any available through food, the next best place to release it for use is our lean mass.

Why your body must not “eat” muscle – and why you need muscles to lose weight

Figure a pound of muscle burns approximately 50 calories a day at rest. Skipping meals causes this lean mass to be destroyed in order to fuel your body when food isn’t available.

Every pound of muscle destroyed creates fewer calories to be used per day, so in essence you’re teaching your body to slow down and store more fat.

Building and maintaining muscle is an absolute must if fat loss is what your heart desires because by age 40 or so, we naturally begin to lose it at a rate of about 8% every ten years and this rate accelerates even more by age 75 or so.

When you realize that the shape you want…the body you have worked so hard for will begin to weaken all on its own, it should begin to make sense that keeping blood sugar stable will allow your body to maintain the muscle you build.

Why you should be eating 5-6 small nutrient meals per day

Eating smaller, nutrient dense meals 5-6 times per day allows you to stay fueled without depleting your body of the energy needed for survival. This allows your muscles to stay intact rather than have to be used instead as a substitute for the food you would be better off consuming.

If you partake in a consistent resistance training routine that continues to build lean mass, eat to stay fueled often enough to ensure you get to maintain what you build during your work-out.

In plain English…your body eats muscle in place of missing food. I kid you not…it really is that simple.

Eat foods rich in fiber, lean protein and healthy fats

Now don’t get me wrong…this doesn’t mean it’s ok to eat junk 5-6 times per day. I’m talking about wholesome and nutritious foods. Foods rich in fiber, lean protein and healthy fats. These are the foods that dissolve guilt because they promote a positive and empowering mindset when it comes to nutrition.

Keeping yourself properly fueled allows you to stay alert and sharp because your nervous system is functioning at optimal levels. Your mood is optimistic because you feel alive and have energy.

Those pesky carbohydrate cravings that used to overpower you is an issue of the past now that you keep your blood sugar levels regulated. Your body stays strong, lean and shapely because you have now learned the secrets that will help your metabolism remain quick and efficient.

Now doesn’t this sound better than starving?

Is Soy Good for Losing Weight?

In this article, Betsy Thurston (RD) explains why there are several controversies related to the health benefits of soy.

Soy is very popular with people following vegan or vegetarian diets. Soy is a complete protein that has a low glycemic index and has low saturated fat content as compared to animal sources of protein. Soybean is a species of legumes and has been consumed for years in several Asian cultures.

The protein content of the natural Soya chunks is very high. It has about 52 percent of protein and only 1.5 percent of fat. This combination makes it a good choice for fat loss. Consuming protein can help you feel full faster and stay sated longer. The proteins from animal sources may introduce saturated fat in your diet that can increase the risk of heart diseases. The lean protein in the soy products can help you build muscle mass that will increase your metabolism, which in turn causes weight loss.

Can soy based products help reduce weight?

The National Center for Biotechnology Information carried out a study in 2003 involving 100 obese adults. The study group was given a soy based diet for 12 weeks and the control group continued to have a regular diet.

At the end of 12 weeks, the research showed that the participants of the study group lost almost double the amount of weight when compared to the control group. The study group also lowered their cholesterol levels significantly. This study did not find any side effects related to consuming soy products. The study concluded replacing regular foods with soy based products can help reduce weight.

Soy products approved as cholesterol lowering food

FDA has approved soy products as a cholesterol lowering food. Fermented soy or tempeh has been proven to reduce the LDL cholesterol.

The American Heart Association does not however, recommend taking isolflavone supplement. (Isoflavones are chemical compounds found in plants of the bean family) Isoflavones are the soy phytoestrogens.

Using soy products along with other heart healthy products and exercise can lower your cholesterol levels.

Are genetically modified soy beans harmful?

Genetically modified soy beans use fewer amounts of pesticides when compared to the regular crop.

The herbicides used for genetically modified soy is not harmful to humans. The genetically engineered soy is easier to cultivate and it preserves the soil content. There have been some reports of developing food allergies by consuming genetically engineered soy products. Several allergists recommend avoiding genetically engineered food including soy.

Is Soy a cause for thyroid enlargement?

Soy is considered a goitrogen which promotes the formation of goiter (enlarged thyroid). Several grains, vegetables and plant food fall into this category. Several factors affect the formation of goiter, such as iodine deficiency, presence of other goitrogens in diet and defects of hormone production. Soy alone is not a cause for thyroid enlargement.

In the event that a person does have hypothyroidism, they may have some difficulty with weight loss.

Thus soy protein is a complete protein that can be successfully incorporated into your diet. It has more health benefits rather than harmful factors. Some studies have linked soy beans to cancer in rats, but the results are not conclusive. Over cooked soy transforms to textured vegetable protein or TVP. This product is carcinogenic and should be avoided. Roasted soy nuts should also be avoided as it can become rancid and carcinogenic the longer it stays on the shelf. More studies are definitely needed to draw conclusions.

In conclusion, soy is a good substitute for animal protein. When used along with other wholesome foods, it can be helpful in lowering weight and cholesterol levels. Despite the controversy surrounding soy, it is a good product when consumed as part of a calorie controlled and planned meal.