Why you should stop for lunch
A recent email to Healthy U from a group of Year 11 students in
Innisfail asked this great question: Why should I eat lunch?
Since we were children we've all been told "breakfast is the
most important meal of the day". But lunch is equally
important. It doesn't matter how old you are, eating regular
meals throughout the day is an important part of staying
Skipping meals means we miss an opportunity to fuel our body with
the energy and nutrients it needs to function well. Just like
a car without petrol, your body will slow right down without the
right fuel. Eating regularly will give you the energy you
need to help your body function on busy days. And while
skipping meals may sound like a great weight loss strategy it can
actually have the opposite effect.
Diabetes Queensland dietitian Alison Bennett said skipping meals
can confuse our bodies.
"While our brain may know that we've chosen to skip lunch because
we'll be eating dinner in just a few hours, our body doesn't know
when it will get its next meal, which can cause it to go into
survivalist mode," she said.
"This means our metabolism slows down to make the most of any fuel
stores we have, and then when we do eat again, the body stores away
extra fuel as fat just in case it has to go for another long period
"If weight loss is your goal, you
definitely don't want your metabolism to slow down."
Eating at least three meals every day will help keep your
metabolism ticking along nicely.
A good lunch will include a mix of foods from the five
"You want to make sure that your lunch has some grain foods like
bread or pasta, some vegetables or salad and a small amount of lean
meat," Ms Bennett said.
"Sandwiches are obviously a great choice but packing some leftover dinner can also add some
"Top it off with a piece of fruit and some low fat yoghurt, milk or
cheese and you have a perfectly balanced lunch that will keep you
fuelled until dinner time."