3 Squares a Day or Grazing – Which is Best?

The question permeates our society along with the desire to change our body images to fit standards that in many cases are unrealistic. Better to focus on eating properly. That doesn’t just mean eating your fruits and veggies, it also means observing an eating schedule that fits your life.

The physiology you’ve been taught with regard to what you should eat every day doesn’t really apply in today’s real world. Your schedule may provide better opportunity for multiple, smaller meals each day rather than opting for 3 squares a day. Depending on whether you’re work life consists of an 8-5 desk job or more of an on-the-go type of job, you should structure your meal plan to fit your life. The most important fact is that meals shouldn’t be skipped. Missing meals will affect your metabolism, and subsequently your weight, and will impact your daily energy levels.

Follow Your Hunger, not the Clock

You should be guided by your hunger, not what time of day it is. It’s past time we moved away from ancestral eating habits and began to make eating decisions based on hunger instead of societal norms. We’ve developed those norms to accommodate our work schedules, and have structured the rest of our lives around them as well. Family events, first dates, and weddings, all are scheduled around an 8-5, 5 days a week work schedule.

These societal norms were established by European settlers when they came to the new world, eventually becoming the standard routine. Better they followed the example of Native Americans, who ate when the urge hit and did not concern themselves with what time of day it was. Instead, the Europeans saw the Native American’s eating habits as uncivilized and sought to differentiate themselves with a more rigid schedule.

The industrial revolution firmly established the traditional “lunch hour” with the after work meal becoming “dinner.” Breakfast as the most important meal of the day and the key to weight loss is a more recent convention, when in truth, our meal schedule is based on convenience. Studies have shown that it might be more beneficial to eat every 3 to 4 hours. Some believe breakfast will determine how many calories you’ll consume the rest of the day, however it’s more likely to set how many calories you’ll actually burn during the course of a day. It actually helps calories burn faster by activating your metabolism.

Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting is one of the newest weight loss trends, going against the flow of current research. The foundation of the concept is that skipping a meal or even going the whole day without eating would not only help with weight reduction, but will also extend a person’s life. It’s been reflected in animal studyies that by reducing caloric intake by 30-40 percent, life expectancy could be extended by a third or more by making the brain resistant to toxins that may cause cellular damage.

Do Smaller, More Frequent Meals Boost the Metabolic Process?

There is a long standing myth that consuming regular, smaller sized meals increases the metabolism. Digestion does raise the metabolism a bit. The process is called the thermic effect. However, it’s the amount of food you eat that establishes the amount of energy expended. For example, 3 meals of 800 calories will result in the same thermic effect as 6 meals of 400 calories. Numerous studies have actually contrasted consuming numerous smaller sized meals vs. fewer bigger meals and found no difference on either metabolic rate or total fat lost.

Continual eating does not allow the body to experience hunger, let alone starvation mode. While the European settlers established a routine that ignores the biological imperative, we’d be better served if we follow our appetites, just like the Native Americans, and live a healthier life.

Still Want 3 Squares a Day?

Even with everything stated here, some still prefer to observe the tradition. At Allen Cafe, you can enjoy breakfast all day, for any of your squares! They serve breakfast and lunch, and are open until 3pm each day. Home cooking, made with love and served with a smile, it’s the best compromise between your kitchen and fast food. You can even graze with us if you prefer!



We are one of the premier Restaurants in Allen,
TX, offering home-made lunch and breakfast in
Allen, TX . Come visit us today at: 302 E. Main St,
#200, Allen, Texas 75002, Phone : 972-747-0151