How many meals a day?

Discussion in 'Dieting / Supplement Discussion' started by Freestyler, Jul 17, 2005.

  1. Freestyler

    Freestyler Purple Belt

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    I tried searching but found alot of bland answers. Should you go 3 BIG meals or 5 small? I'm wanting to start eating healthier, cutting pop out, etc. Also, what do you guys eat daily? If its 3 meals, I've been thinking....Bfast, eggs/toast/maybe some oatmeal...lunch, Meat/Fruit/Shake...Dinner, Meat/Veggies...Also, is Crystal Light good for you? I could drink those all day. Thanks again guys.
     
  2. STILL LIFE

    STILL LIFE Yellow Belt

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    The five meal plan would be better, there is a forum post recently you should check out. It was something about "eating unhealthy" some good info was in there. Don't replace crystal light with water though. And you should eat more whole grain and throw some pasta in that routine. Make sure your cardio is kickin ass and you could eat healthy and still have a few decent size meals a day.
     
  3. STILL LIFE

    STILL LIFE Yellow Belt

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    Meant to say don't replace water with crystal light.
     
  4. Timbaland

    Timbaland Black Belt

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    http://www.sherdog.net/forums/showthread.php?t=274318

    check out this thread for some diet ideas. People just use crystal light to add some flavor to water generally. It has sugar in it so its not the best, but if it will make you drink more water then thats fine.
     
  5. Aaron Howard

    Aaron Howard Guest

    Makes no difference overall. Just get your calories/macros in sometime through the day.
     
  6. HUNEBED

    HUNEBED Yellow Belt

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    does make a whole lot of difference > for example your body (liver) can take only 30 grams of protein out of your food for 1,5 - 2 hours > so if you eat a big meal with lets say 50 grams of protein, you will only adapt 30 gram and the rest you will be converted!? to glucose & fat

    so 5 good meals = better/healthier than 3 big ones
     
  7. TKMaxx715

    TKMaxx715 saggy pants

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    and also with more meals the body's metabolism is faster
     
  8. LCDforMe

    LCDforMe Purple Belt

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    Really? I never knew that.

    So by 5 meals do you guys mean 5 whole complete meals (protein, carb, fats) or do you mean like 3 bigger meals and 2 sancks between there?
     
  9. Terumo

    Terumo Orange Belt

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    Neither of these statements are true.

    It is, generally speaking, most advantageous to disperse feeding times throughout the day with smaller meals. I will get into the reasoning behind this is a moment. First of all, however, something needs to be said regarding maximum protein assimilation theories. That being, there is no magic number of grams of protein that the body can handle in a given time frame. It is governed by a few factors, all of which are variable from person-to-person and time-to-time. Here are are some:

    (1) Current levels of free amino acid pool population. The body carries a certain amount of amino acids in the bloodstream at any given moment. This is sometimes called a "nitrogen balance," although it could be argued that this is actually a misnomer. When the amino pool reaches undesirably low levels, it will have to pull amino acids from either stored body tissue or food. At times of low amino pool levels (e.g. post-workout, post-fasting), the body's ability to digest and assimilate a greater amount of protein is heightened.

    (2) Available protease and pepsin play roles in how readily a protein can be uptaken into the body. Insufficient free enzyme levels will result in poor digestion. This is a minor limiting factor, however, unless a tremendous amount of easily digested protein is consumed in one sitting.

    (3) The type of protein, contents of the stomach, and other things consumed along with the protein will all factor into how rapidly the protein is digested. A protein that populates the amino acid pool very rapidly (e.g. whey hydrolysate), taken on an empty stomach, with nothing else but high-gly carbs to facilitate an insulin response, will be best suited for rapid amino pool population applications. This would be basically PWO or upon waking in the morning. A slow-digesting protein (e.g. micellar casein), taken with lots of fat and fiber not too long after a prior meal would take a very long time to dump amino acids into the bloodstream. We could be talking about anywhere from 6-12 hours. It would clearly be conceivable that consuming 90g of protein in the first scenario would lead to much more amino "wasting" than the second.

    So, why should I spread meals throughout the day rather than gorging myself two or three times? There are a few reasons, but let me just mention the ones that are probably most important to you:

    (1) Spreading your feedings throughout the day (meaning meal portions are more frequent and smaller) will cause less of an insulin/glucose flux. Blood sugar, amino levels, free/bound lipids are constantly in flux, which is not necessarily a good thing for the athlete. The body does the best job possible to minimize blood sugar imbalances by secretion of insulin and glucagon. However, feeding the body large amounts of kCal (specifically high-GI, high-II carbs) in a single sitting forces much more strain on the endocrine system. Minimizing peaks and troughs in blood sugar will benefit energy levels, pancreatic function, body composition, and even tooth health (yes, high blood sugar has been shown to play a role in tooth decay).

    (2) Eating more frequently minimizes lipogenesis, and in caloric-deficient diets, it helps in inducing lipolysis. A lot of this feeds off of the previous point of minimizing blood glucose flux. However, there are some unidentified enzymes that seem to actually recognize meal frequency and assist the body in adipose storage when feedings become infrequent. This is survival mechanism which we don't really need anymore, but it takes the evolutionary process a long time to turn off unneeded genes.

    I guess that is enough info for now, although it is a bit of a skeleton outline of how food works in the body. If anyone has any targeted questions, feel free to ask.
     
  10. MadDildo

    MadDildo Shame Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    Damn. This cat knows his shit.
     
  11. MadDildo

    MadDildo Shame Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    I once read that 6 meals throughout the day is best for maintaining optimal stability in blood sugar levels.
     
  12. mmacoach

    mmacoach Guest

    Very good post and very informative for everyone.
     
  13. HUNEBED

    HUNEBED Yellow Belt

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    from that 30 gram-per 2hour-theorie, that's the basic idea about protein-adaption(don't know if this is correctly written)

    but personnaly i do think what you stated too > that it depends on a couple of factors >>> as with anything > various per person

    i'm doing a study "nutrition for sports" now and have always read that protein-"law" of 30 grams... but then again: about food and nutrition are so many different ideas and theories, it's just absurd

    btw Terumo you got PM
     
  14. Terumo

    Terumo Orange Belt

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    Yes, that is pretty much true. Truthfully, the more meals one consumes (assuming total daily kCal is constant), the happier your pancreas will be. However, there is a point of diminishing returns, as well as a point where things just become ridiculous and impractical. I would say that a six or seven meal plan is spot-on. Of course, when I say "meal," that could simply mean a protein shake and a piece of fruit. I'm not talking about the traditional, American 2000 kCal gorge-fest.

    I got the PM, and I will respond likewise. However, I will address this previously convered issue with a bit more clarity (I notice you are from Holland--sorry if there is a language barrier).

    There is no law that governs the amount of protein that can be utilized in a given time. The idea of maximum protein limits came about sometime in the 1970s. At first, I think the Met-Rx guys decided 37g was the magic number (hence, the amount of protein they have in their drink, to this day). Then, some people from a competing company argued that it was more like 30g. Then it was 40g, then 45g, then 50g... I'm guessing the number kept getting bigger such that the companies could get people to purchase and consume more of their product. The bottom line is that there is simply too much variability to make a blanket statement about how much protein we can "handle."

    Personally, I would rather have too much than too little. Excess protein is not a very bad thing, even for those that are trying to lose weight. The total thermal energy required to convert one mole of protein into one mole of glucose almost outweighs the total energy that will be obtained from the glucose. Not to mention, protein acts as (my terminology) a "glucose buffer." When consumed with carbohydrates, it slows gastric emptying, and thus, it slows the rate at which glucose (from the carbs) is dumped into your bloodstream. This takes us back to the whole insulin peaks/valleys issue.

    Essentially, I am just trying to debunk the myth that there exists a magic number of protein grams that our bodies can readily assimilate. It isn't true, and there is too much variability to make an attempt to calculate such a number.

    Thanks for the inquiry, and the patience in reading my initial post. Let me know if there is anything that remains unclear--I'll do my best to explain.
     
  15. MadDildo

    MadDildo Shame Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    Terumo, you're at Vanderbilt, aren't you? That's my mother's alma mater.
     
  16. MadDildo

    MadDildo Shame Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    Low amino-acid pool and "fasting"...duh, I never put 2 and 2 together. This is why you're second largest protein intake should be in the morning.
     
  17. MadDildo

    MadDildo Shame Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    Hey Terumo, assuming you did take an amino acid supplement, what would be the best time to take it, in theory? At night?

    I wouldn't want it inhibiting my protein ingestion during the day, but then, I also ingest casein before bedtime.

    I'm no longer vegetarian so I don't take AA anymore, but I was curious.
     

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