5 Tips On How to Eat More [And Still Accomplish Any Fitness Goal]

So you just realized that you only eat two, maybe three times per day. One or two of those meals are composed of junk and hardly contain any nutritional value.

You also just learned that eating 4-6 times per day will give you the best shot at obtaining all of the nutrients your body needs.

As a busy professional, it is difficult to eat regularly and get an adequate amount of nutrition on a daily basis.

 

What do you do? 

 

Welcome to the time hack series, where we provide tips to maximize your efficiency while improving your fitness.

 
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This post will cover

  • Why eating more frequently is in your best interest, especially if you have a demanding schedule

  • Intermittent fasting and whether or not you should do it

  • 5 simple strategies that you can use to eat 4-6 times throughout the day when your schedule is unpredictable and not conducive to eating

 

 

Why You Need to Consume More Meals per Day

No matter how good you think your meals are, eating twice a day will not provide your body with the nutrition that it needs.

There are way too many vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that are absolutely essential for your body to function optimally.

Eating 4-6 times per day will give you the best shot at obtaining the appropriate amount of micronutrients that you need.

This does not mean eating 4-6 servings of Cheetos and hamburgers. You need to eat 4-6 high quality, nutrient-dense foods.

 

Eating More Frequently Can:

-Improve your metabolism

-Keep your energy levels constant throughout the day

-Improve concentration

-Decrease large fluctuations in insulin and blood sugar levels

-Decrease cravings 

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Eating 4-6 times is certainly a difficult task to accomplish with a 12-16 hour work day.

When was the last time you had to skip lunch because of your workday?

Resident doctors may be stuck in a surgery that lasts 8+ hours or working on multiple projects that have strict deadlines.

Fortunately, there are a few strategies you could implement right now to ensure that you are getting enough nutrients in your body.

 

A Quick Word on Intermittent Fasting for Busy Professionals

The opposite of consuming multiple meals per day is intermittent fasting. This is a popular approach that many people are using to meet their dietary goals.

In a nutshell, it involves fasting for a designated period of time, followed by a period in which you can eat.

There are many different variations of intermittent fasting, with the most common strategy being a 16/8 split. This means fasting for 16 hours, followed by an 8-hour window to consume ALL of your meals. 

 

I do not recommend this approach for busy professionals with unpredictable schedules.

 

It assumes that you will have an 8-hour stretch to peacefully consume all of the nutrition that you need in a single day.

As we all know, this is usually not the case. Purposefully fasting with an unpredictable schedule is likely to result in high caloric restriction and nutrient deficiency. We have discussed this at length in How To Lose Weight Naturally Using The Incredible Power Of Food.

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Fasting for 16 hours can mess with your energy and concentration levels...

Also, busy professionals (especially doctors) already have enough factors competing for their mental resources. Experiencing hunger during your busy workday can impact your concentration, especially when it is important for you to be sharp at all times.

Intermittent fasting can work for some individuals, but following the strategies in this post is easier and much more palatable.

 

5 Simple Ways to Consume More Meals During Your Busy WorkDay

 

So without further ado, here are 5 simple strategies that you can use to eat 4-6 times throughout the day.

Keep in mind, each meal doesn't have to be a full sitting. A nutrient-dense snack could be sufficient for most people.

 

This could include...

-A carrot with almond butter

-1/2 of an avocado on a piece of sprouted grain toast

-A small bowl of Greek yogurt with chia seeds

 

... just to name a few options.

 

Start Your Day Off Right

One of the easiest and most sure-fire ways of consuming more meals throughout the day is by eating breakfast. 

Many people say that they cannot eat breakfast in the morning because it is too early.  You need to suck it up. A cup of coffee will not do.

Wake up 5 to 10 minutes earlier and prepare yourself a nice healthy breakfast to get your day started off right. We have spoken at length regarding the benefits of breakfast, and I highly encourage you to check it out at

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5 Quick and Healthy Breakfast Options for the Busy Professional

We also discuss to learn how to make a 5-minute breakfast every morning.

Do not miss this easy opportunity to consume a nutrient dense meal in a short amount of time.

 

 

Invest Time in Preparation

It is very beneficial to get into the habit of preparing some of your meals. 

Meal prepping takes away the hassle of having to figure out where the majority of your meals are going to come from, and it allows you to hand select all of the ingredients you are consuming. 

Having food readily available to you at your workplace also eliminates unpredictable factors that can contribute to you skipping meals. 

This includes needing to go to the cafeteria, selecting where you are going to order from, or worrying about how and when your order is going to get to you. 

In addition, you can prep quick and easy snacks that can be easily and readily consumed when you're short on time.

To learn more, check Healthy Meal Prep Basics: A Step By Step Guide For Busy Individuals

           Nuts are one of the easiest foods to meal prep in bulk

          Nuts are one of the easiest foods to meal prep in bulk

 

 

Making Portability Your Friend

This tip goes hand-in-hand with meal prepping. Try and make as many meals as you can, portable. 

This includes glass containers, Ziploc bags, and cups with lids. 

This way, you can easily carry around a meal or two in your pocket, to have at any given moment. 

Never be caught off guard without high-quality energy readily available.

 

Eat Prophylactically

This tip is huge.

Do not wait until you are hungry to eat. Do not wait until it is noon or 5 PM to have your "lunch "or "dinner". 

If you know that you are going to have a large time commitment coming up soon, go ahead and eat prophylactically. 

Having the energy stored in your body for use at a later time will pay off. Going very long periods of time without any food dramatically increases the chance of you eating unhealthy foods and binging on them.

 

Liquefy a Meal

I am a big proponent of shakes and smoothies.

You should be too.

Liquid calories are one of the easiest ways to consume a moderately sized meal in a portable and Quick manner. 

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Every morning, as I'm cooking my breakfast, I am blending the WCT power smoothie to take with me to work. 

The smoothie contains many fruits and vegetables to meet our micronutrient requirements. 

In addition, you can add extra ingredients to increase the nutritional value such as nut butter, dark chocolate, and/or seeds (flax, hemp, chia).

You can drink this meal at any time without needing to stop what you're doing.

 

Final Words on Eating More with a Busy Schedule

There you have it. Those are the top 5 things that we do to make sure that we get all of our nutrition on a daily basis. 

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Spreading your nutrient intake into 4-6 meals per day is do-able and chock full of benefits.

There are way too many nutrients that your body needs on a daily basis to think that eating 2-3 time a day will be sufficient.

Treat your body with the fuel that it needs, and watch how it treats you back with aesthetics, and most importantly PERFORMANCE!

What do you think? Do you prefer to get all of your nutrition in 8 hours or spread out throughout the day? Check out 7 Realistic Dietary Habits You Can Use To Eat Healthier Right Now to learn quick strategies to eat better too!

Do you have any other tips to add to this list? How many meals per day do you typically eat?

Post your comments and questions below.

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Alex & Brittany Robles are the founders of The White Coat Trainer, a site dedicated to improving the health and wellness of busy individuals. Learn more about them here and connect with them on instagram and Twitter. Feel free to send them a message here