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Go Forward and Graze Like the Elk
A year ago the editor of this website, yes that's me, did high-intensity cardio 5 days per week and a kickboxing class on the weekend. She even pumped a bit of iron when she had the energy. However, she still couldn't lose the excess pounds around her butt and thighs that had been plaguing her since she was a teenager. Plus, she just didn't have any excess energy for anything else.
An appointment with a personal trainer offered me this advice: "You should be consuming 5 to 6 meals per day." Although it seemed really excessive at the time, with will-power and determination I've been eating five meals every day now for the last year, and not only did I say bon voyage to that excess baggage on my butt and thighs, I feel fantastic.
I alluded to grazing like an elk in the title of this article. You may laugh, but it actually makes sense just take a look at the animal world. An elk is svelte, toned and strong. He grazes on grass intermittently throughout the day. A bear, on the other hand, eats with a hunter-gatherer frame of mind, meaning that he stocks up every time he eats to get himself ready for the winter fast. As humans, we're really more like the elk when you think about it. We have food stores at our disposal. In fact, everywhere we turn there's a 24-hour grocery store, coffee shop or burger joint for our feasting enjoyment. However, the majority of the population is obese because we eat like bears as if every meal were our last. It's true, when we eat 3 meals a day we tend to eat until we get our fill. The problem is we don't hibernate for the winter. Nor are we homeless or experiencing a food storage, so our bodies process all of these excess calories and turn them into fat storage.
The grazing-eating strategy is far more effective for metabolism and weight control than dieting because you're not depriving yourself. When the body is deprived on a diet it's programmed to go into survival mode and it will eventually binge at the fear of starving. Grazing, on the other hand, reprograms your body. It says, I'm only feeding you a little now because you'll be fed again in 2 hours.
Now, we all understand how eating 3 large meals over-fills our tanks and how smaller, frequent meals give us just enough fuel for the day.
Here are some other 6-meal-a-day-bonuses:
A metabolical boost Your body is genetically programmed to go into starving mode when it's not fed every 3 hours. With 3 meals a day your body will hold onto calories and fat, but with a small meal every 3 hours your body will expend the energy because it knows it will dine again soon.
Weight loss wonder It's tough to lose weight when your metabolism is slow. When you deprive yourself with diets or only one meal a day the body stores every calorie because it thinks it's starving. Plus, eventually you will give in to cravings and binge on ice cream and cheesecake.
More Energy Dieting upsets the body's blood sug...