I grew up with a less is more mentality, as in the less often you eat, the less you'll weigh. As a body-conscious teenager, that translated into me ignoring my hunger pangs until well past lunchtime. When I finally caved to the call of my angry stomach, I'd end up practically shoveling food into my mouth. I may have been eating only one meal a day, but that meal was a giant one. 

Fortunately, I grew up. I went through therapy, went vegetarian and became a mum. I started eating breakfast with my daughter before I put her on the school bus, had lunch at my desk and ate dinner with my family. I thought I had gotten into a pretty good rhythm, but recently I noticed a shift. As I'd gotten swamped by deadlines and found myself working longer and longer hours, I was once again forgetting to eat until my stomach starting screaming at me to eat something—anything!—now. 

That "anything" rarely turned out to be a healthy salad or veggie burger. Instead, I'd grab whatever was handy, and eat a lot more of it than I would have if I was just mildly hungry. The result: I gained 5 kilograms, and I felt as sluggish as I had back when I had a newborn (11 years ago!) keeping me up at all hours.

With spring on the horizon, I decided it was time to force myself to get healthy. Some studies have found eating as often as six times a day helps to reduce hunger, which certainly makes sense. Research has also suggested that eating regular meals at the same time each day can boost your metabolism.
I decided I'd try eating six small meals a day—each about ¼ of the size of a traditional breakfast or lunch—and space them out by 2-2½ hours so I'd never be going too long without food. My hope was that if I wasn't waiting until I was ravenous, I'd make healthier choices and stop eating when I felt myself hitting the "full point" rather than eating well past it. I resolved to test my theory for a month. Here's what I learned.

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