Feeling bloated? Constantly hungry? This simple diet tweak could be the answer...
My eating habits once were: wake up, breakfast, snack, lunch, another snack, dinner. This worked for me for a while in terms of staying lean, but I started to find myself getting ravenously hungry in the afternoons and before dinner. I noticed it particularly whenever I finished late, following evening personal training sessions or Boot camp classes.
I also experienced odd random sugar cravings, which I’d try to curb with fruit. Sometimes this worked, sometimes not. Was I not eating enough for my muscle mass? Needless to say, I was starting to get very frustrated!
I started researching further into the digestive process and the ‘breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, dinner like a pauper’ theory. I grew up experiencing severe digestive problems, caused by a very acidic diet and (unknown) gluten intolerance, so wanted to learn as much as I could.
- A large breakfast does NOT necessarily mean you consume less throughout the day
- Eating light-heavy benefits the body far more than heavy-light
Starting the day with a large breakfast of acidic animal protein creates the start of a ‘digestive traffic jam.’ This often causes blood sugar crashes after a couple hours, and potential overeating from thinking you’re hungry. It is really just your digestive system trying to break down all the food in your system.
A study in the January 2011 Nutrition Journal demonstrated subjects who ate larger breakfasts consumed more calories throughout the day, than those who ate smaller breakfasts.
The British Journal of Nutrition also published a study that found consuming more energy at breakfast inhibited fat oxidation (how much we burn) throughout the day. Both studies concluded those seeking to lean out could benefit from eating lighter breakfasts.
Try the following morning routine for a week and see how you feel:
A large cup (or two) of warm water with lemon after waking up.
Around an hour later, have a large green smoothie made with 80:20 vegetable: fruit ratio. This provides your body with fibre and essential vitamins, minerals and enzymes required for optimal digestion, removal of waste and, ultimately, the burning of fat!
Eating heavier foods as the day progresses gives your body the most time to digest them. I speak from experience when I say bloating and hunger pangs will disappear and energy will soar!
So enjoy feeling your healthiest and looking your leanest with this easy tweak to how you eat!