Weight-loss Trap #2: Eat 6 Small Meals a Day to Lose Weight
Most of us have heard that in order to lose weight, we need to eat a bunch of small meals throughout the day... To "graze."
The whole 6 small meals per day thing came about with the idea that it would help people control hunger by keeping blood sugar levels even and, ideally, people would then eat less.
What actually ended up happening was the exact opposite: People found themselves eating more and in turn, gaining weight.
The faulty logic of 6 meals a day
Our bodies are efficient machines, built to go without food for longer than the 3-4 hours we do today (I’m pretty sure there weren’t any 24-hour mini-marts back in the Paleolithic Era, and humans managed just fine).
The reality is that when we eat, it takes 8-12 hours for our bodies to burn through the glucose it gets from food. Once it burns through the glucose, the body goes for the fat stores.
These fat stores aren’t just the love handles around our bellies, but also any fatty deposits near our hearts or livers. These fat deposits are just the thing that can cause problems because the heart and liver were never meant to store fat.
When we continually give our body food, it doesn’t have a chance to use up the glucose it is getting and, in turn, it converts it into fat. It’s like saving for a rainy day that never comes.
When we confront our diet, head-on, addressing not only what we are eating, but when we are eating, we can start to get a handle on... well, the love handles. The way to do this is by getting our bodies to go after the fat we are storing - this is where ketosis comes in.
The basics of ketosis
I’m sure the word "ketosis" isn’t completely foreign to you. I remember hearing about it the first time I tried the Atkins Diet back in the late 90’s. I knew it helped with weight loss but the details of how and why were fuzzy.
I now know that ketosis is a metabolic state that forces the body to rely on fat for its energy needs.
People eating a traditional American diet are primarily burning glucose because there tends to be an excess of glucose available to the body. If glucose is available, that’s what the body will go for because it metabolizes this the fastest.
Ketosis, on the other hand, forces the body to rely on ketones for fuel versus glucose stores. There is a certain amount of glucose our bodies need for survival, but that doesn’t mean you need to get the glucose from food.
Our bodies have been known to survive during long fasts or famines because glucose can be created in the liver from breaking down fat.
Rather than turning to the muscles and breaking them down for fuel, the body will create Ketone bodies. This happens when certain hormones cause fat to be released from fat cells in the body where it then proceeds to go to the liver for it to be turned into ketones.
Ketone bodies are the byproduct of this process. The ketone bodies are then distributed throughout the body to places like the brain and other major organs that need glucose to survive. That’s why most people do well on a low-carb diet.
Pretty cool, right? Our bodies will naturally turn into fat-burning machines and who doesn’t want to be a fat-burner?
The fat you curse then becomes the fuel you burn. Damn Skippy!
For some great keto-friendly, stupid-easy, incredibly yummy recipes to help you become a fat burner, check out my recipe book, Kickin It In The Kitchen Ketogenic Style.