Eating one meal a day has lots of benefits and very few drawbacks. Especially once you’ve done it for a little while.
Since I started eating once a day my life has improved in many ways. Easier weight loss is just one.
This article lists and describes the benefits of eating one meal a day and following a ketogenic/intermittent fasting type of diet.
After reading, you’ll know how this type of diet benefits you.
1. Eating once a day saves time
I don’t know how I ever ate 5-6 meals every day based on the time it took out of every day.
Back then, if I wasn’t eating I was cooking. If I wasn’t cooking or eating I was washing dishes or going to the grocery store.
While I love to eat, doing so multiple times a day is a chore. The cleaning up and cooking even more so. Plus there’s no proven benefit to eating this way so why do it at all?
Now that I eat once a day I only need to buy groceries one time a week. This, along with cooking and cleaning up less often saves me about 15 hours a week. Now I have lots of extra time to work, study, train, and best of all surf more often.
2. You’ll burn fat for fuel
Since I go at least 16 and up to 40 hours between meals my body is using its own stored fat for energy much of the time.
This is a metabolic state known as nutritional ketosis. It’s perfectly safe and is in my experience to get rid of body fat and keep it off.
If you follow a low carb diet you can get your body into the same fat burning state but it can take weeks and definitely requires you to count carbs, fat, and protein much more closely.
When you eat one meal a day, your body will kick into fat burning mode between meals and stay there if you keep carbohydrates around 75 grams or so per meal.
If you do get kicked out of this state after a meal, that’s okay. You’ll get back into the fat burning zone within several hours.
3. I have better focus and more mental energy.
After a few days, an awesome benefit of eating one meal a day kicks in. You will suddenly be able to focus better on tasks like writing and reading and be able to work longer before you feel mentally tired.
I don’t want to hype this benefit too much but it can be really profound. When I was eating several times a day my focus and mental and energy were limited to an hour or so at a time at best. Now I go from 4AM to dinner time without feeling burned out or tired. I rarely drink coffee or use caffeine either.
This enables me to write a blog post everyday, study, do my research, and lots of other mentally taxing work for 8, and sometimes more hours a day..
If this was the only benefit I got from intermittent fasting this way, I would do it without hesitation.
4. My physical energy is great too.
Just like your brain, your muscles will be able to go harder, longer. These results really kick in after a couple of weeks and have continued so long as I’m eating one high protein, low carbohydrate, meal with lots of healthy fats.
Before I ate this way I trained every day. Some days it was really tough to find the energy I needed to get through my workout.
Now, I’m able to train twice a day if I like. I’m also able to push myself a lot harder. This has helped me make great progress and do things like walk a mile carrying 150 pound sandbags and double the weight of my best 5 rep front squat max.
This extra physical energy and endurance also makes it easier to get what I need to done and have the extra energy to play hard too. Unlike the past I’m never too tired to go out at night or go for a long hike with my wife after a long day of work.
I’m not the only one who trains and works like this on one meal a day. There are many high performing men and women who do the same like MMA champ & Olympic medalist Ronda Rousey, football great Herschel Walker, and General Stanley McChrystal.
5. I’m much less sore post-workout.
Thing is they’re a lot less sore than before I started eating once a day. Not just a little but a lot. I talking about being able to walk down stairs and sit comfortably after doing lots of intense sets of squats, swings, presses, etc.
The soreness and pain are diminished to the point now that I can do some type of squat every day. I recently went over 30 days of squatting daily. That’s right, every day for a month. Each workout I did included at least 5 sets of squats whether they were front squats, goblet squats, split squats, etc.
I’ve tried this before but being excessively sore and tired always got the best of me. Not this time. One meal a day makes enhances my recovery better than anything else I’ve ever done.
6. Benefits of caloric restriction without drawbacks.
The one way scientists have been able to extend an animal’s lifespan is by severely restricting the calories eaten every day. In us humans this means eating less than a thousand calories a day if you want to potentially see similar results. Every day for the rest of your life.
The problem with eating so little is that you will feel pretty horrible much if not all of the time. We’re talking being cold, hungry, depressed, and downright miserable all of the time.
To paraphrase Animal House’s dean Wermer, cold, tired, and bummed out is no way to live. Eating one meal a day can fortunately produce the same benefits as caloric restriction, and help you feel awesome.
The reason for this is that the 16 plus hours of fasting you’ll do between meals produces the same benefits in our body as does restricting your calories 1000 a less per day, without restricting calories when you do eat.
7. It eliminates cravings for carb & sugar-rich foods.
After a week or two, perhaps sooner, of eating one meal a day you’ll notice that your cravings for soda, chips, pasta, bread, etc. are really diminished.
This because this way of eating not only helps you burn off extra body fat and use it for energy but also keeps the hormones that regulate our appetite under control.
Instead of having these hormones go way up and then come crashing down every couple of hours they stay nice and steady throughout the day. Then, when you do eat a low carb, high fat and protein meal they don’t go crazy either.
This means that your cravings for pastries, cookies, pasta, chops, etc. goes way down. The longer you eat this way the less you’ll have them.
I know this may be hard to believe but once you try you’ll see for yourself that the proof is in the pudding. I know, it happened to me.
I’m a pretty major junk food junkie. Before I started eating low carb/keto and then eating one meal a day my cravings were gnarly. I gave in to them all of the time too. It was nothing for me to spend $20 a day on sodas, chops, candy, and fast food. Some days the damage was probably worse.
Now, as long as I stick to eating a big dinner after 16-20 hours of fasting my cravings are pretty nonexistent. When they do rear their ugly head they’re much easier to control. I like to take MCT Oil. It eliminates cravings without kicking my body out of fat burning mode.
8. Enjoy what you eat.
I really love food. Eating once a day makes me love it even more, which I didn’t think was possible.
Granted this may be all mental but I’ll take it. It’s a lot more fun to eat, and eat the right foods when I only do it once a day.
The great thing is that it’s not a hassle or something I even think about.
9. Good food taste better, bad foods taste worse.
Along the lines of the benefit above, food tastes better when you’re not eating 5 times a day. Waiting until dinner or whenever you choose to eat your daily meal doesn’t just build discipline but makes the process of eating much more fun.
So when you finally do break your fast and eat you’ll notice that healthy foods like steak taste meatier and richer, butter is creamier, and berries are that much sweeter. I even taste things like salt more distinctly and notice the crispy crust on my steak more. Eating isn’t just a chore any more, it’s something me and my wife look forward to and really enjoy.
It’s not just that healthy foods taste better when you eat one meal a day. Junk foods – bread, soda, fruit juice, cake, etc. taste worse. Especially the processed stuff that comes in a box.
These foods like Coca Cola and Reese’s cups are so sweet for me now that I don’t like the taste. I never thought I’d be writing this but it’s true. Reminding myself of this when I think about eating candy or other sweets makes it easier to avoid.
10. It’s the easiest diet to restart if necessary.
If you ever go off the one meal a day diet getting back on is simple. Just don’t eat again until the next day at your scheduled time. Sometimes I’ll fast for a 24-36 hours to rest myself. Either way works.
That’s all it takes. Your body will be back to burning fat for fuel and you’ll be back to feeling energized and ready to get after it, not craving the foods that took you off track in the first place.
Now you know the 10 top benefits of eating one meal a day. If you decide to give it a try, let me know (link) how it works for you.