Tuesday, September 14, 2010
As many of you may know I am very strict with my diet and nutrition. I generally eat about 5 times per day and try to include a protein source and a vegetable at each meal. This protein source could be a lean meat, dairy, eggs or a combination.
While I eat about 5 times per day that may not be practical for everyone. I fully understand that some people have obligations that force them to go many hours between meals. While this may not be ideal, it is not necessarily a bad thing. It is a common misconception that one can "stoke" their metabolism by eating more frequently. While it is not necessarily true that your metabolism is faster when eating more frequently I do think that it helps with dietary compliance.
So all of this being said I think that one of the biggest things you can do to be more compliant with your meal planning is to be prepared. If you think that you might be away from home for a lot of the day, plan for it. This can mean bringing a bag of nuts, or some chopped veggies in a bag, or a good protein bar or really anything else that may tide you over until you can get home and prepare a meal.
This will help avoid the EMERGENCY drive-through situation. If you know that you have something available to you, you probably will be less likely to panic when you get hungry and make a decision that you may regret later.
I also find that my hunger is based on expectation. If I'm expecting to eat at a certain time and it happens to be about 10-15 minutes beyond that time I find myself feeling ravenously hungry. On the other hand if I don't expect a meal at a certain time, I often am not hungry at that same time.
Take Home Point: Prepare yourself with portable snacks that you can keep in your bag or car and if you end up being hungry you're prepared. Don't be so rigid in your meal timing that you end up disappointed if you can't eat at your planned time. Listen to your body and ask yourself "Am I really hungry, or do I just think I'm hungry" Try to include a protein source and a vegetable at each meal.