Like animals, humans used to eat when hungry however, over the past centuries that has changed a lot. A three-meal-a-day standard arose with a preference to breakfast lunch and dinner which leads to all sorts of health problems. However, much of the animal kingdom does quite the opposite.
Multiple meals a day is generally accepted to be a norm, with parroting in the media that this constant eating has health benefits. Also eating is translated as some form of status symbol in society as eating multiple times means more purchasing power/status. Since multiple eating at regular intervals causes our body to produce enzymes, acids and repeating the process over time we have trained our bodies to become hungry during those times. This is how we become emotionally tied to food and develop cravings to eat ever more. Additionally, there is another problem with what we eat. Most of the food we eat lacks minerals/vitamins and since our body signals hunger whenever such a deficiency arises we keep attempting to compensate with larger quantities of the same nutritionally deficient food. As a result we take certain ingredients such as sugars, fats and proteins in excess leading to all manner of health problems.
So let’s look at what brings us to this habitual culture of eating multiple times. Looking at the pre-colonial era, cultures in different regions used to eat only once a day, or at most, whenever they were hungry. As the body has an amazing ability to notify when it’s hungry, we used to eat only at that time. The multi-meal habit arose during colonization as indigenous peoples in those regions were forced into labor, to accommodate the demands of the work shifts. More food became necessary to have the strength to perform labors and in order to have the strength at the needed time, more meals were introduced to enable this. As a result people have become slaves and started acting against the health needs of their bodies. Pre-colonization, peoples used to eat only once a day and that meal was where people used to gather, taking a long time to eat and relax and socialize. In the recent history, food industry in order to increase its profits started promoting various unhealthy habits as well like eating rich simple carbs foods like pasta, rice, cereals, chocolates etc.
Multiple meals produces a need to produce insulin multiple times a day, which places a burden on the pancreas, and hinders testosterone levels which is a common problem in men. This eventually leads to insulin resistance which is much harder to solve.
One may say eating a long meal leads to lot of problems however, that analysis falls short. When we eat once we eat what is required to carry on activities for the next day. We do not gorge ourselves to excess because our body notifies us when we are full. Even though eating once appears to provide a lot of food all at once, overall it will be less than total amount of food if multiple meals are undertaken, not to mention between meal snacks. Extra food from the one single meal gets stored as fat to be used the next day during what can be basically viewed as that day’s fat burning phase. In this manner we won’t feel hungry, and most of the excess fat is burned during the next day as part of ketosis which does not generate insulin. Hence we don't need to consume food multiple times a day, the pancreas won’t be producing insulin multiple times a day, and our brain can be fully active during the whole day as blood flow is channeled to brain and other muscular activities rather than being diverted to the gut every few hours.
By limiting food once, ones body’s digestive track from throat to anus is empty which leads to better immune system and keeps us sharp. This is mainly because our body starts repairing the dead tissues and other cells to improve itself, the technical name is called autophagy thus improving overall health.
Also another great advantage of eating once a day is more like fasting, it improves testosterone and Human Growth Harmone which is good for men and women. It decreases aging process and people look 10 years younger.
One need not look very far to validate this concept. When born, children after certain age generally do not like to eat multiple times. Parents, in almost all cultures, force children to eat as though there is some deficiency. In a way parents, because of their ignorance and their habits force children to be the same as them thus repeating the vicious cycle.
Currently most doctors blankly attribute susceptibility to disease to genetic issues. However, case after case it is proven that these issues are neither genetic nor cultural and most of these issues are related to a simple lack of minerals /vitamins and dietary habits. Few Medical Doctors have training in human nutrition and are influenced by pharmaceutical companies to provide “cures” attributed to genetics instead of solving the root cause of the problems, which is this lack of minerals and vitamins and fats. GMO products are promoted to support huge consumerization with the notion that poor people can now eat as well as rich people. The result is quantity without quality. More and more people with deficiencies are produced and the habits that created these deficiencies are then carried on to the next generation.
For any problem the solution is simple, but difficult to execute. Endeavor to eat no more than once a day. Separate hunger from emotion first. Since it’s hard to break the force of habit, start slow. Second, learn to eat food which contains a proper balance of minerals, vitamins and fats. This will cut down on emotionally driven eating and will help cure or prevent a lot of life style diseases.
Food must be considered as medicine and overdosing medicine becomes drug.