Think back to the time you were rushing out the door in the morning, you barely remembered your bag and phone and then three quarters of your way to work you remember that you left your lunch on the kitchen counter! You are frustrated because you spent a lot of time preparing your meals this week and wanted to stay on track. Instead of seeing what else was available to you, you decide you are going to just skip lunch and wait until you get home for dinner.
Although you may instinctively think that skipping lunch is the best choice, here’s why grabbing even the less healthy choice is better than skipping that lunch!
It Is Important to Eat Every Three to Four Hours
It is important to eat something every three to four hours. When we go long periods without eating our metabolism and body’s are not sure when they will get the next meal and therefore our body holds on to our additional fat stores instead of letting them go. When we eat something every three to four hours we are signaling to our body that the next meal or snack is coming soon which leads our metabolism to work as efficiently as possible. If you ate breakfast and then skipped lunch in this situation, it may be eight hours or more before you eat your next meal. If possible, bring snacks to work and keep them there so you have snacks available at hand for the days you may forget your lunch.
Skipping Lunch May Cause You to Overeat at Dinner
If you skip lunch, you may come home feeling very ravenous. When you feel this way, you are more likely to overeat for dinner or grab something that may not be the best choice. In order to prevent yourself from doing so, it is important to eat something for lunch and have a snack available between lunch and dinner. If your choices are limited for lunch, choose the best possible choice even if the only thing available is a burger or a chicken sandwich. Although these things wouldn’t be your first choice for lunch, having them will not derail your progress and will help you keep your metabolism running as efficiently as possible.
This May Happen Again, and It Is Better to be Prepared!
Even on the days we feel most prepared, we are not always perfect! You may forget your lunch on another day, or run out of snacks at the office. During these times, having a plan set up for how you will still get a meal in is very important. Once you know there are a few things at a cafeteria, store, or restaurant nearby; even if they are not the healthiest choice, you know you have at least something available to eat!