Do you eat 3 meals a day or do you graze all day long? There is evidence that eating all day long is a good idea (Ask Dr. Sears, Kassels Medical) and doesn’t that sound like a lot more fun than just eating 3 meals? I personally love to graze all day long; the trick is to make sure that you only eat meals the size of your fist. More than likely this means that you will need to adjust your definition of the term “meal”. Our stomachs are only the size of our fist which means that if you eat more than a fist-sized amount of food you are overfilling your stomach and you will likely begin to gain weight before too long.
So what are the benefits of grazing? Your blood sugar levels tend to be more stable (this is great during pregnancy) and you never get to that really hungry stage. You are giving your body a little food at a time to keep those levels on the middle ground – this is easier on your body. Think about it like a hike. Is it easier to follow a level path or one that is full of peaks and valleys? That flat path is easier in the long run because you don’t have those intense highs and lows. Another benefit of never getting super hungry is that you are less likely to binge on the cookies or chips that are sitting around. Most people tend to reach for the unhealthy snacks more when they get hungry (think of the grocery store trip when you are hungry – you end up with way too much unhealthy food in the cart).
Are there any consequences to grazing? Oh yes! It takes a lot more planning to make sure that you are getting all of the necessary nutrients during the day. You also have to make sure you stick to the correct portion sizes for each meal. It is really easy to get off track with grazing, but once you get into the habit of planning these 6 smaller meals it is simple.
Give grazing a try for 2 weeks, see what you think. I bet you find it easier to get more fruits and veggies into your daily diet. Let me know what you think about this approach. Are there other benefits for you?