Eating less means fewer calories, and fewer calories equals faster fat/weight loss, right?

Well, it’s not quite that simple. In fact, not eating enough or worse, starving yourself, will actually slow your progress. For effective, long-term results – and to maintain your overall health and sanity – you probably need more food than you’re eating right now.

Remember, a calorie is the unit of energy we derive from food. That’s all. It’s not something you avoid at all costs. People who have done my Challenges to lose body fat are often surprised at the amount of food they have to eat. I was that same way when I first started competing. I remember thinking, “How am I going to get lean eating this much food?” 🤔

As you’ll see below, you don’t have to torture yourself to reach your goals. Here are four reasons to eat more food.

1. BUILD & MAINTAIN MUSCLE As anybody who has tried to build muscle knows, you can have awesome workouts in the gym, but you won’t see results unless you are consistently following a meal plan to support your goals. In fact, all that training with minimal eating to support recovery means you’re tearing your body down and headed for a serious case of overtraining. You need enough calories and nutrients from lean protein, carbs, and healthy fats to  build muscle. 💪

2. BURN FAT Eating enough food is just as important when you’re trying to lose fat. Once you start starving yourself, your metabolism slows and your body starts preserving fat and burning muscle tissue for fuel. There’s a lot of debate about how many calories one pound of muscle burns compared to one pound of fat, but regardless of the actual number, numerous studies agree on one thing: muscle burns more calories than fat, period. So carrying an adequate amount of muscle mass on your frame actually boosts your resting metabolic rate so that your body burns fat more efficiently. 🔥

3. STOP THE ENERGY CRISIS Obviously, food gives us energy. When you don’t put enough energy into your body, you’ll be lethargic, strength and endurance levels go down in the gym, you’ll have problems focusing mentally, and you’ll feel lightheaded and experience hunger pains. Get enough calories by eating healthy, small, frequent meals throughout the day to provide a steady stream of energy and nutrients for your body. 🍲

4. A GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP Sleep is critical for the recovery process and eating too few calories can lead to disturbances in deep sleep cycles. And I’m not talking about being sleepy after the big Thanksgiving meal. It’s more about the culmination of meals throughout the day that provides enough calories to help you sleep well at night. 🛌🏻