Does eating frequent meals stokes your metabolic furnace?

Only if you believe in Unicorn 🦄 

Here’s a simple illustration by Dr Brad Schoendfeld (Exercise scientist 👨‍🔬) that proves eating frequent meal does not increase your TEF (thermic effect).

Just think for a second. Food gives you energy. The term does not make sense. It does not make you burn more fat just because you eat frequent meals.

As food gets digested, your body actually goes through hormonal changes

that slow down fat burning, not increase it.

You might argue that eating dark chocolate or hot peppers might help you lose fat but is it any better than going to the gym for an hour? Most likely not.

Let’s talk about “TEF” and why it’s important in regards to metabolism. TEF or Thermic Effect of Food is the caloric cost of digesting and processing different macronutrients. Protein has a thermic effect upward of five times greater than carbohydrates or fat. If you digest 200 calories of protein, 40 to 70 calories are burn through digestion.

The only way to increase “TEF” is through aerobic and anaerobic exercise. No amount of hot peppers can increase it.

If you are trying to lose fat (that means you have to be in a caloric deficit), a sound nutritional advise is to increase your protein intake and lower your carbs and fat intake.

▪ Carbohydrates: 5 to 15% of the energy consumed

▪ Protein: 20 to 35%

▪ Fats: at most 5 to 15 %

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