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Why Eating Every 2-3 Hours is a Bad Idea

I used to eat all day long. Every 3 hours on the mark. I was always hungry. 

Even at the 2 hour mark my tummy started to rumble and I was thinking of food. But how come? I just friggin’ ate 2 hours ago? Why eat again?

But, it was a good thing right? I was stoking my metabolism, keeping my body fuelled and running efficiently with my mini all day meals. 

Then one day, 4 hours went by and I hadn’t eaten. It wasn’t pretty!

I was HANGRY (angry+hungry), moody, bitchy and literally couldn’t even process anything. Food was all I needed and I needed it bad. Like NOW!

Well, I learned my lesson. I made sure to always have food with me, to never skip a meal and to always eat every 3 hours to balance my blood sugar to avoid those ravenous bitchy monster moods. 

Then I learned about this little thing called Insulin. 

Insulin is quite powerful. In fact, Insulin is one of the MOST important hormones in the body and it’s important you understand and manage it effectively. 

But before I go on, I want to talk about dieting and weight loss, as insulin is a primary factory in weight gain and loss.

There are many ‘diets’ out there that fall within the 5-6 mini meal 2-3 hour category. In fact, there are many men and women (many of which I know) that compete in body building competitions and biking contests and follow a 5-6 meal a day diet. 

Do they get results? Yes! 

Are they ripped and toned? Yes!

Can you lose weight eating 5-6 mini meals every 2-3 hours all day long? Yes!

But that’s not what I’m talking about. If you are a competitor or an athlete, then there is a good chance you can manage insulin effectively (since exercise helps with insulin sensitivity) and you’re probably working out and training at a pretty elite level.

However, sustaining 5-6 meals a day long term can be difficult and I tend to see many people rebound and develop insulin sensitivity over time due to not sustaining this type of eating. 

But, if you are not an athlete, work out 3-4 days a week (or don’t work out at all), have over 20+ pounds to lose or are obese, have PCOS, are pre diabetic or diabetic, are struggling with hormonal imbalances like PMS or irregular cycles, are constantly craving sugar and on a blood sugar role coaster all day, dealing with sleep disturbances and highly stressed, well… you get the picture. 

Eating every 2-3 hours is not the answer for you!

If you are currently following a diet that has you eating every 2-3 hours, you are doing your body (and your insulin levels) a real disservice.

Let’s look at Insulin a little deeper…

Your pancreas produces insulin, the hard-working hormone that seeks out sugar, also known as glucose and turns it into useful energy.

When you eat a meal, sugar enters your blood stream in the form of glucose. Your pancreas secretes insulin to manage the sugar in your blood and transports the sugar to your cells. Once at your cells, insulin basically knocks on the cell door and asks to enter with sugar in tow.

In a healthy body, the cell doors will hear the knock and open the door. On the other hand, if you are consuming a high carbohydrate diet and not exercising, this process doesn’t always happen and the cell door won’t answer the knock. If you are constantly forcing insulin to over work and knock on the cell doors, over time, both your pancreas and cells become exhausted. 

Your pancreas is one tough little bugger, and when your cells won’t open their door to insulin, your pancreas is forced to produce more insulin in an effort to get the sugar through the cell door. 

Chronically high levels of insulin make it extremely difficult, if not impossible, to lose weight. 

When your cells no longer respond to insulin, this is what is called Insulin Resistance and it’s the precursor to diabetes.

Insulin resistance is caused by poor gut and liver health, depleted gut flora (good bacteria) and inflammation caused by the over consumption of inflammatory foods such as sugar and processed oils.

So… if you are eating every 2-3 hours, not only are you forcing your pancreas to produce more insulin throughout the day, but you’re constantly knocking on your cell doors, hoping to let sugar into your cells. Can you see how this would pose a problem?

To balance your blood sugar and insulin levels, eating every 2-3 hours is not the answer. You should be able to go at least 4-6 hours between meals without feeling jittery, moody and hangry. 

This is why my clients have such high success on my Metabolic Weight Loss Program. We manage the insulin with 3 meals a day, comprised of the right macronutrients, and not only do they lower their insulin levels, but they lose weight, with ease. 

It’s really an incredible thing to watch. Especially when you have diabetic clients who get off of their meds or lower the dosage, all because of choosing the right foods, managing portion sizes and eating 3 meals a day. 

Just to note, without the right meal plan specific for your body, it may take time to get used to eating every 4-6 hours between meals, but I do encourage you to try. Incorporating the right amount of protein, eating a lot vegetables and incorporating healthy fats can help to balance your insulin levels, keeping you satiated between meals. 

If you’re eating every 3 hours, what your body is doing is burning through glycogen (stored sugar). To actually burn adipose tissue (fat), then the sweet spot is the 5 hour mark between meals.

Really, when you think about it, were we ever designed to eat 5-6 meals a day, every 2-3 hours? If we date back to the Paleolithic era, there wasn’t an abundance of food. We followed a feast and famine type of ‘diet.’ 

Breakfast, lunch and dinner. That’s easy and it’s effective for weight loss and balancing hormones.

In fact, think about the weekend. How many times on a Saturday, have you slept in, ate a large brunch, went about your day running errands and then before you knew it, it was 6pm and time for dinner. You’ve probably had many laid back weekends where you ate only 2 meals a day.

It’s also important to note, that women who suffer with PCOS tend to have insulin resistance. Following this type of diet and protocol can help to manage PCOS symptoms and improve insulin sensitivity. I’ve seen it work beautifully over and over again. 

High insulin levels can stimulate the ovaries to produce testosterone, which is why women with PCOS tend to suffer with acne and facial hair growth. By managing insulin, you manage the overproduction of testosterone.

Both PCOS and diabetes can be managed effectively with the right diet and nutritional protocols. I encourage you to seek out a practitioner (such as myself) that can design the right nutrition program for you and work to balance your hormones effectively. 

As with weight loss, it is complex and unique to every one. Although calories in and calories out serve some (very small) part, hormones play an even bigger role. Addressing both hormones and weight will not only ensure you lose weight effectively, but will help you to keep it off for good. 

*To learn more about my weight loss program and discuss your health history and goals, email me at – samantha@holisticwellness.ca for a complimentary consult call.

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Elide’s Weight Loss Success Story

Meet Elide…

The incredible and brave woman I have the privilege of working with. 

Elide came to me late last year looking to lose weight and get off her diabetic medication. For years she had been trying to lose weight, but was struggling due to medications, inflammation and not having the right support. 

I remember our phone call and the hesitation in her voice to spend money. We talked for an hour and I took the time to truly listen to her concerns and needs, letting her know that my program was not just some random cookie cutter meal plan, but a customized plan geared to specifically address her diabetes, blood sugar imbalances and inflammation.

Elide is one determined and committed woman and I am inspired by her daily. She’s taken the time to educate herself over the years about quality food and made a commitment to eat organic and source out the best foods she could find. She found this dramatically improved her health and in turn, she became an incredible role model for her 2 teenage daughters. 

Having suffered through 2 car crashes which almost completely immobilized her and being passed from doctor to doctor and loaded up on med’s, its no wonder she gained weight and had been struggling to lose it. 

Elide is determined to get off her med’s, reverse her inflammation and truly heal herself. She is the most positive woman I know and her mental and emotional state has been a huge reason to her success. 

I am truly grateful to work with her and be her coach on this incredible weight loss journey. 

In a short 4 weeks, Elide is down almost 20 pounds and off one of her medications! 

Her fasting morning glucose has dropped from 9 to 5.2 and her blood sugar is completely balanced and regulated between meals. In fact, she hasn’t even craved for something sweet or indulgent. 

Her joints feel better and she has more energy then ever before!!

I cannot wait to see her progress over the next month. 

By eating clean, nutrient dense whole foods, like fish, chicken and turkey, healthy fats like avocado oil, ghee and coconut oil and loading her plate up with fresh vegetables and leafy greens, Elide is a true testament to what eating whole foods can do to your body and health.

In fact, she even gets to enjoy bread on her meal plan, plus a weekly treat meal of her choice! 

I am so proud of her and grateful to her for sharing her story with all of you. 

Check out her incredible before and after photos! She looks amazing! 

If Elide can do it… SO CAN YOU!!

B&A_Elide_Feb 4 2015


 If you are interested in my Metabolic Weight Loss Program, you can read more about it HERE. Let’s set up a FREE 20 minute consult to discuss your weight loss goals and discuss if this program is right for you. I look forward to hearing from you. Please email me at – samanthagladish@gmail.com.

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How To Lose Fat Forever

Image[Photo by: eljoja]

Seeing pictures of my fat self would disgust me. Staring back at me was someone I no longer wanted to be. I couldn’t believe how bad I let myself go. 

Now every time I pick up a 40 pound dumbbell, I think to myself that in my hands was the extra weight I carried around so many years ago.

I was in a relationship that no longer inspired me. I was in a university program that was at odds with my values. I resented the decisions I made to please others. I was disappointed that my high paying factory job had allowed me to buy everything I wanted, but left a gaping hole of what I truly needed. 

I had stuffed myself with so many Krispy Kreme donuts and endless litres of dark cola’s before I finally hit a brick wall. I was constantly bloated. I’d roll down my car window to air out the repugnant gas I passed. I dragged my feet when I walked. 

When I saw videos of myself, I was astonished at how sluggish I was. I had the posture of someone with a whittled down personality. I hid my big belly and insecurity with baggy clothes. 

Desperate for change I hunted for extreme solutions at the store. Many labels targeted my pain points so well that I would immediately jump on their bandwagon.

I dosed on pills and potions that stripped my intestines of all good and even bad bacteria (which I learned afterward). I survived on liquids for days straight as suggested. Still, I was so dehydrated and malnourished I would get massive headaches, stomach pains, and embarrassingly frequent trips to the bathroom. 

I yo-yoed up and down for a while and was unable to keep my weight down. Nothing lasted.

The cycle kept repeating until I unknowingly discovered what would create lasting weight loss results for me. It was not a product or something I could buy online. 

It was self worth. 

Self love. 

Self acceptance. 

And I had none. Nada.

It was reflected in the poor choices I made around food, exercise and the people I hung around. I was disconnected with who I was. The words passion, excitement and inspiration were simply not in my vocabulary.

Over a short period of time I began to fill that once gaping hole with wisdom instead of junk food. The biggest catalyst came in two major forms. The famous self help program Personal Power II by Anthony Robbins. And the legendary classic, Think & Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. 

Picking up these books were like learning a different language. It was so hard to wrap my head around some of the ideas. But there was something about the stories they shared that made me feel like I could relate to so many of these people who had become influential and impactful to many. I started to believe I could transform myself. My health, my body, my mind. Everything.

It helped me tap into a long lost power that had always resided within me this whole time.

The power to decide. 

To cut off all other options, as Robbins famously puts it.

What put further fuel to the fire was coming across the Invictus poem by William Ernest Henley enclosed in Hill’s Think & Grow Rich where it stated: 

“I am the master of my fate, the captain of my soul.”

This line became my new mantra. 

No longer would I allow myself to let others dictate the direction of my life. More and more I built a newfound relationship with myself. I walked, journaled, meditated, exercised, and studied nutrition. I couldn’t help but begin eating higher quality food. 

This time it was because I wanted to. Not because I had a desire to lose weight but because I finally felt that I truly deserved it. A feeling no diet could ever give me.

I deserved to feel energetic, strong, flexible, balanced and healthy. I deserved to discover my passion, find my truth, walk my own path and reach my highest potential. I deserved to put only good food into my body. I deserved to finally feel confident about my own body. 

I decided to never settle for mediocrity. 

And that was the real turning point from dieting to a lasting shift in my physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well being.

No system, strategy, pill, potion, or diet guide will work unless you cultivate your self love, find self worth and learn to accept yourself.

Let go of what everyone else wants for you. Their false mythologies of what a good body, good job, or good life does not serve you. 

Find new definitions within your self. Live from that place. 

The only opinion, judgments and thoughts that matter are the one’s you have for your self.

When you live with awareness, love, and compassion for your self and have purpose, passion and inspiration behind you, you can’t help but do good things for your mind, body and soul. 

You will have less and less desire for the crappy food, negative people and toxic environments that don’t nourish you. 

Now when I come across photos of myself, staring back at me is not someone with a perfect body or a finished product, but someone I’m finally proud to be. Yes, a work in progress. But gladly embarking on a lifelong journey towards health and well being. 

Happy for the choices I’ve made. And happy to just be me.

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** Join me this evening in Mississauga for my Monthly Meetup group. Tonight’s Topic – The Transformational Power of Your Story. Plus, we have a special guest speaker! Click HERE for more info and Join us! Would love to see you there 🙂 

** If your ready to lose the weight and gain back your health, email Samantha Gladish at – samanthagladish@gmail.com and reserve your spot in her Metabolic Weight Loss Program. No pills, no shakes, just real whole foods and REAL results. 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Oliver Manalese

Image 1Oliver coaches and guides people in their personal awareness, growth and transformation. He is the founder of Integrated Self, a workshop series for self-explorers, a singer-songwriter as well as a certified yoga instructor. In between writing, coaching sessions and making music, Oliver spends the rest of his time enjoying the good life with his love Janet, eating gorgeous food, sipping espressos and travelling. For more, go to: www.olivermanalese.com

 

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