During the Q&A at almost every single workshop I’ve held, people want to know how often they should be snacking. They’ve heard they should eat six small meals a day, or that they should just have three big meals a day without snacks, or that they should only eat snacks after they’ve worked out. The list goes on.
My answer? A question. What feels good to you? Do you feel better when you eat smaller meals and more of them, or large meals without the snacks? Does a banana feel better to your body before or after a workout, or for breakfast? What’s right for you? Start taking notice, checking in with yourself each and every day, and that amazing body of yours will give you an answer.
I usually feel best when I eat a big breakfast and lunch, a snack in the afternoon, and a normal dinner. But sometimes, I like to have smaller meals and more of them, especially in summer when there is so much fresh fruit to be eaten and snacked on. Some days, I’m hungry at 10am, and some days I can last til 1pm before eating lunch (generally I’m a 12 on the dot lunch eater). It depends on what I’ve eaten, how much physical activity I’ve done, and how I’m feeling that day. And that’s ok! I just listen and go with it.
I invite you to start experimenting. For a whole week, try out five or six small meals a day and see how you like it. The next week, try out three bigger meals plus one snack at most. See how that feels. Use pen and paper to jot down notes. Compare them. Make it a fun science experiment! Maybe even make a hypothesis and see if it’s correct. You don’t need any more diet books to tell you what to do, you just need to start paying attention to the one body you have, and it will surely give you the answer.
To help you with your experimenting, I have a snack idea for you. I really like to wrap up some prosciutto around a piece of cantaloupe. It satisfies my sweet and salty cravings all at once, and gives me a bit of protein and natural sugar to keep me going until dinnertime. There’s no recipe for this one, just wrap a bit of prosciutto around a ripe and delicious summer melon, and throw in a toothpick if you’d like. Also, you can have my favorite protein bites that are perfect for a mid-morning or afternoon snack.
Alright, off you go with snack ideas and some homework! Please report back!