T Nation

Eat More Or Less?


#1

I noticed that a lot of diets on here are very well balanced and effective but I have a few questions. I eat A LOT! I know most of you here do as well but even when I am eating the right balance of Fats, Carbs and Protein I am still consuming a lot of food. For right now when i am doing a lot of cardio and lifting weights it is helping me to lose weight. What about when I am older? Should I try to eat less to help my stomach get smaller? How about now? What I am asking is should I eat less of even the good foods now to shrink my stomach so that later I won't still have a giant gaping stomach to fill? What do you guys think?


#2

Your stomach stretches and shrinks all day long. The average guy carrying more overall body mass will have a larger appetite than some kid weighing 135lbs. Needing more calories to simply maintain your weight will help you avoid obesity in the long run (assuming you are actually serious about training). The amount of food I can diet on now is enough for some people to gain weight on. That is not a negative.

In the average person, once your stomach is full, signals are sent to the brain informing it that you can stop eating. It is often at this point where you would feel nauseated if you tried to eat more. Some obese people either have a disconnection in that signal or have managed to override it allowing them to continue to overfill their stomachs. Their stomachs stretch to compensate, however, just like yours, their stomach would shrink again if empty for extended periods of time.

The amount of stretch is based on routine food intake and the needs of the body. This is often why someone after dieting may take a while before their appetite returns to normal.

The bottom line is, there is no reason for you to avoid eating as if you are preparing to eat less in the future. If your body actually needs the calories to maintain your body weight (or to grow in terms of lean body mass), give it what it needs to function well. If you are simply tossing food down your throat because you like doughnuts, that is a different story and clearly your waistline would let us know if you actually needed all of that food.