Why Skipping Meals Isn't The Answer To Your Weight Loss Goals
Hello, Friend! Happy Tuesday! And, Happy Holidays!
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I get it.
You overindulge a bit one day/meal and think that you’ll just skip the next meal to “make up for it.”
Or, you wake up late one day and decide to skip breakfast.
Or, work gets busy and you work through your lunch break, skipping lunch.
Things like that happen.
And I totally get that sometimes those choices might be unavoidable. And if you notice that happening for you, it might be worth taking time to strategize to support yourself in the future… have quick grab-and-go options that are available for you to take on your morning commute… or a hearty, non-perishable snack option that you keep in your desk drawer to allow you to have something instead of skipping lunch. Those kinds of things.
Aside from those unavoidable moments, sometimes we consciously and actively decide to pass on meals. And that’s not great, and likely doesn’t help support our weight loss goals.
(Note: This commentary is DIFFERENT than fasting because with an actual fasting protocol, IF it’s right for you, still requires you to eat all of your calories in your eating window, which is different than just skipping breakfast.)
Here’s why skipping meals isn’t the answer:
There is a value to consistent caloric intake. If we consistently eat ~1800 calories per day, and we’re not seeing weight losses or gains as desired, then we can adjust our intake to 1750 or 1850, respectively, thus allowing us to continue to see changes in the direction of our goals.
Alternatively, if one day we skip a meal and eat 1200 calories, then the next we eat all of our meals and we’re at 1800, then the next we skip lunch and are at 1350, then go back to 1800ish, that’s really tough to make any adjustments to to benefit your weight loss goals moving forward. How do we decide on a caloric total to aim for if we’re always all over the place? How do we support our workouts well when our energy intake varies so much day-to-day?
Another important factor here is blood sugar regularity and regulation. If we’re consistently eating meals and snacks every few hours, we’re helping to support our blood sugar and overall energy levels. Not to mention, staving off hunger pangs and regulating moods and emotions! Being #hangry is a real thing!
Skipping meals can also negatively impact your hunger hormones: leptin, ghrelin, insulin, and cortisol. When we ignore these hunger and fullness cues, we can disrupt our normal hunger hormone function…. not great for helping us regulate our intake moving forward.
But, here’s the biggest factor, in my opinion. When you eat regular meals and snacks, and DON’T skip meals, you cut back on overindulgence (or, avoid binging and purging). Many times, when people eat less, purposely or not, for any period of time, they end up undernourishing their bodies and then their bodies eventually call for more food, because it NEEDS IT! Sometimes that takes the form of cravings! Regardless of what you’re called to eat, you may end up overeating when you do “allow” intake again or go back to regular meals because of that undernourished period.
Here’s the bottom line: Eating regular meals and snacks can help you lose/gain weight as desired wayyyy more than skipping meals. When your intake is consistent, you keep your hormones and blood sugar in their sweet spots, you avoid overindulgence, and help stabilize your mood and energy levels.
If it’s possible to eat breakfast, lunch, dinner, and 1-3 snacks throughout the day, that should do the trick! Remember, just because you’re eating more meals/snacks during the day, doesn’t mean you’re necessarily eating more calories. You don’t have to skip meals to eat fewer calories. You may have to plan your intake a bit more at first to make sure you’re eating enough for your goals, but you don’t have to not eat to reach them.
And, remember that you never have to make up for what you’ve eaten in the past. Instead, consider how you can best support yourself moving forward. Include proteins, fruits, veggies, and drink your water instead of skipping meals; it’ll help you in the long run.
With all of this being said, if you’re interested in making changes moving forward and including consistent and regular meals, the 23 Day Jumpstart to 2023 can help you do just that!
Instead of making a resolution that you may or may not end up dropping in a few weeks or days, I invite you to consider taking a different approach to the New Year.
Starting January 1, I’m running the 23 Day Jumpstart to 2023!
So, no, we’re not making up for the holidays.
We’re starting out the year focusing on the sustainable healthy habits that most contribute to body composition changes and helping us reach our goals, with a little self-care thrown in.
If you could use this kind of accountability and support starting the New Year, I’d love to have you on board.
In fact, I’d love for you to invite anyone who needs a little jumpstart into 2023 to join! The more the merrier! All are welcome!
I promise I’ll help support everyone who joins to figure out exactly what they need to do to be successful and hold you accountable throughout!
Go to this link for all the information about what you will target for those 23 days, what you get when you sign up, and to actually sign up: https://www.nutritionforlifeproject.com/23DayJumpstart
Feel free to share that link with anyone else who might be interested too!
As always, thank you for reading, and remember you don’t have to skip meals this holiday season!