How snacking can ruin your health!

Ok, perhaps that is a bit extreme but snacking a lot throughout the day can have a drastic impact on your health. Now if you’re of the mindset that you need to eat every 2-3 hours to keep your metabolism fired up, give me a minute to explain.  I imagine this is particularly disturbing to you, I know I was of the same mindset for many years.  I grazed throughout the day eating healthy meals or snacks every 2-3 hours; I did this for years until last spring.

Our digestive system is the key to our health, trust me.  When we aren’t digesting and assimilating properly we can have all sorts of problems from bloating, cramps, indigestion and acid reflux to joint pain, lethargy, skin issues, cloudy thinking and even depression.  You may be eating a clean and healthy diet but whatever your body doesn’t need and utilize remains, builds up over time and eventually becomes toxic.

So when I was designing a spring cleanse I became determined to eat just three meals per day as I was recommending.  I’ve learned that when we give ourselves ample time between each meal to fully digest the food our bodies are in a better place to accept and utilize our next meal.  Not only that but we also give our bodies time to burn the fuel we’ve fed it and then resort to our stored fuel (fat) to carry us until our next meal.

As Dr. John Douillard explains our fat storage fuel that is accessed when we aren’t constantly feeding ourselves is a ‘calm, stable, non-emergency source’ which is the most effective source of fuel we could ask for.  This enables our bodies to burn off what we no longer need, digest our meal completely and avoid a dependency on snacking throughout the day.  I’ve met a few people who question me on this and explain that they are hypoglycemic or have substantial blood sugar issues so I’ve done a bit of research here.  Although I believe that eating frequently throughout the day will keep these individuals more comfortable it also perpetuates a dependency to eating on this schedule forever.   With some guidance and careful implementation I think a cycle of eating six meals per day could be reduced to three without cause.

 

So, what to do?  If you’re a grazer by nature and you’d like to give it a try, this is what I recommend.

 

  •  Begin the day with warm water and fresh lemon. Warm water in general is better for your digestive fire, keep it stoked with a great start.
  • Start with four meals per day, breakfast, lunch, a later lunch and dinner.   When you’re comfortable with this then you can gradually make lunch larger and eliminate the second lunch.
  • Drink LOTS of water between meals.  I know, you’ve heard this before that’s because water is the key.  Aim for room temperature to warm water to keep your digestion strong and avoid drinking more than a few sips of water with your meal.  Herbal teas are great additions to your day as well especially Dr. Lad’s agni tea.
  • Make lunch the main meal and dinner should not be too large or consumed too close to bedtime.
  • Slow down and enjoy each meal.  I mean prepare and eat your meal with family or friends if possible, not in front of the computer or the TV or with loud abrasive music or sounds around you.
  • Chew, chew, and chew your food.  Seriously.  Dr. Mercola indicates in an article on digestive concerns that digestion begins in the mouth, digest better and feel full longer by chewing longer. When we chew and literally break down food we also give it time to mix with our natural saliva which contains needed enzymes to further breakdown the food chemically.

If this is new to you the idea of making this change may be too much, that’s ok.  But maybe I’ve called your attention to something you didn’t know; perhaps take a closer look at what you eat, when and how it makes you feel.

How does it make you feel?  Let me know if practice any of the strategies indicated above or if you’ve struggled with your digestion comment below and let me help.

wishing  love + a happy belly,

Amber

Comments

  1. This was a great post. I really need to see this. Some wonderful tips that I want to get started doing asap!
    Thank you, I love your site,
    FranT

    • Hello Fran. Thank you so much. I’m glad you found me and enjoyed the article. Welcome + have a great day !! Amber

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