Man Eating Food

Does Eating More Often Speed Up Your Metabolism?

I’m not sure where this Myth started exactly, but we see this over and over again all over the fitness community.

People continue to say, “If you eat more meals it speeds up your metabolism,” or “You should eat every 2 hours so that you burn fat faster,” and many other different variations of this.

Studies have been done on this; the results have shown us that Meal Frequency does not make a difference at the same level of calories.

There is no evidence out there that shows eating more often makes you burn more calories.

As I preach time and time again, the number of Calories you eat is what matters.

The 4 minute video below by Brandon Campbell explains this very well.

The number of meals you eat doesn’t matter if you eat the same number of overall calories.

You can eat 7 meals a day totaling 3500 calories, or 2 meals a day totaling 3500 calories. The end result is the same.

It really comes down to personal preference.

Eating more meals is a good idea for someone who gets hungry a lot, or someone that gets low blood sugar often (hypoglycemia).

Some guys need to eat a meal before they workout for energy, and eat a meal after training out of habit. That’s perfectly fine, but don’t listen to guys telling you need protein within 30 minutes of your workout or you won’t grow, that’s a bunch of nonsense.

Your meals should fit around your schedule during the day; For example, you eat breakfast, hit the gym, eat a snack after the gym, go to work, eat lunch at work, come home and eat dinner. It’s not rocket science. 

Just because a famous bodybuilder told you to prepare 8 meals a day before hand, put them in tupperware containers, and carry them around wherever you go, doesn’t mean you have to do that. Many professional bodybuilders use insulin and they have to time their meals and consumption of carbohydrates perfectly. Otherwise they can suffer serious side effects from not eating at a certain time after taking insulin. Their advice isn’t helpful for anyone who isn’t a bodybuilder using tons of drugs.

The Verdict

The number of meals you eat depends on How Many Calories You Consume, and as I mentioned, Personal Preference.

The most important thing is to find out how many calories you need to eat for your goals. Use my Daily Calorie Calculator. Eat less than your maintenance calories to lose weight (Calorie Deficit), and eat more than your maintenance to gain weight (Calorie Surplus).

Personally, I eat about 3 meals a day. Sometimes, I eat 3 meals and a fourth meal as a small snack. I do this whether I’m bulking or cutting.

This really isn’t complicated stuff.

Keep it simple by tracking your calories. It takes me less than 2 minutes out of each day.

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2 comments

  1. Brandon Campbell is one of my favorite fitness youtubers, I didn’t know you knew about him. My question is though if meal frequency doesn’t matter could you eat only one huge meal a day and still get the same results?

    1. Yes you can. A lot of people do intermittent fasting which is having an eating window, where you have a certain amount of time to eat all of your food/calories for the day. Some people take this far and give themselves only a hour or two to get all their calories in for the day. From there they don’t eating until the next day. This definitely works but I wouldn’t suggest it because you probably won’t feel great later in the day. Also I can’t imagine trying to get 3000 calories all into one meal unless it’s a lot of junk food.

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