09 Feb Information Overload and a Myth That Needs To Die
It’s come to my attention that we’re really – and I mean really – overwhelmed by constant information. So much so, that knowing the difference between right and wrong, black and white, good and bad, and your opinion and those around you’s opinion is becoming less and less obvious as the days tick by and the Earth keeps spinning.
As our days blend and blur together, and our access to literally an overabundance of information from any topic in the entire world (or universe, for that matter) is right in the palm of our hands, it’s certainly become a hard task to differentiate between what is right for you, and what is merely just a repetitious phrase, quote, or titbit of information that has been recycled so often, that it has lost its true truth.
Source: Lean Gains
But, what does that mean, you say? Well, for one, when we don’t know something, we can of course just “Google it”. Which also of course means that we’re always connected and never switch off, leading to countless other issues ranging from depression, anxiety, stress, and forms of addiction. But, let’s leave that for another time, shall we?
For now, let me bring us back to the overwhelming and bountiful amounts of information topic that can cause us to one day think one thing, to the next being on the verge of distraught, searching for the why’s, the how’s, and the ‘what the hell were we thinking the day previous’s?!’ (yes, I did just make up that plural).
It is this very overabundance of information that can be causing you and I to be stuck in our ways. To be blinded from logic, clouded from simplicity. It’s this very accessible information that can cause us to believe that we must buy that certain supplement, eat that certain way, train that certain style, call our mother’s from the other end of a string-can phone whilst blindfolded and hanging from an organic, Paleo coconut tree.
It’s the overload of information that causes myths to spring up all over the globe, and it’s time to start putting them through a good ol’ fashioned Brazen Bull (don’t Google that). Starting with a big one…
BREAKFAST IS THE MOST IMPORTANT MEAL OF THE DAY
The term breakfast can be broken down into break and fast, meaning, to break your fast. Meaning, to eat after not eating for an extended period of time. Meaning, breakfast can be eaten at any time of the day. Which, also meaning, breakfast does not have to consist of eggs on toast, a bowl of Fruit Loops (even though they taste pretty damn good), or some fruit and a large cup of coffee.
Break-fast, can consist of anything you want it to, and the possibilities are truly endless. Mine today, for example, (which was around 1.15pm) was a nice mix of white and brown rice, some of my favourite vegetables (including broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, carrots, peas, and onion), and enough protein to make me feel good (around 200g of cooked chicken breast). And, to top this off, I consumed this after working the whole morning and lifting the heaviest I ever have lifted.
Not eaten AND still lift heavy and train intensely for 1-1.5 hours?! That’s preposterous! You may think that, but in reality, because I’ve lived like this for over four years now, my body has in fact adapted greatly to this and is actually in a much happier state, where my whole day isn’t compromised by missing breakfast, my muscles not atrophying, or even my metabolism slowing down.
This whole ‘metabolism slowing down from missing a meal’ couldn’t be further from the truth. Your metabolism, for one, is not something that can be tampered with long-term just by going a few extra hours without jamming food down your oesophagus. And in fact, has been shown to actually speed up when in a fasted state for an extended period of time. With studies even proving that surviving for extended periods of time in a fasted state is not quite as detrimental as that guy at the gym has made you think.
WHY AM I HUNGRY THEN?
Ghrelin, as I’ve written about before, is the main determinate for when it comes to hunger, and is actually great at learning your routine. So, stop eating breakfast at 7am every day and change it 10am, and he will get used to it. Change it to 12pm, and he will get used to that also. Giving yourself a week or so to adapt to the new style, and you can also see that this is so.
Which, of course, is not me saying that you should do the same, just that it works for me (and thousands of other people out there) and opens that much sought after freedom door. You know the one. The freedom door that provides you with freedom to not worry if you miss a meal, freedom to not freak out if you don’t have time for breakfast, freedom to not stress that eating as soon as you wake up is a dire requirement for a fully functioning, fat burning, muscle building, cognitive alert human being.
All of this certainly doesn’t mean that if you don’t eat breakfast that you can just load up at the next opportune moment. I’m not saying that. Your overall intake still matters here, so pay attention to what you’re still eating at your break-fast. Pay attention to the type of food you’re eating, what you’re eating for the rest of your day and the rest of your week.
I only say all of this above to give you the awareness so that you can stop stressing about timing of meals (or meal frequencies, for that matter), and start thinking about your overall intake. Skipping or eating breakfast isn’t the issue here, and in fact, not constantly loading your body up with food can increase your body’s ability to burn fat.
The bottom line is this: if you eat more than what your body needs or burns, then of course you’re going to put on weight. But if you stay consistent with your eating styles, stay consistent with your energy ratios, then you can very well achieve the lifestyle and body that you’re after.