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Quibbling with nibbling.

Several months ago, considerable publicity was given to a report on the effects of multiple small meals versus the traditional three a day in lowering blood cholesterol. (Is that all we talk about these days?) Nibbling, or "grazing" as some have called it, is not a new concept. A number of studies have shown that as the number of meals per day increases, the amount of body fat decreases. In some cases this was probably because nibblers tended to eat less overall, but in other instances the same phenomenon occurred even when the nibblers' caloric intakes were the same as those who ate full meals. Two possibilities were suggested: the body may be more efficient in storing fat when it receives more food at one time, or perhaps the stomach just gets so hungry between less frequent meals that one tends to overeat at mealtime.

On the other hand, some studies show little difference in the way the body disposes of calories, and the number and quantity of meals eaten in a day are insignificant. Moreover, some nutrition experts are unhappy with the concept of nibbling because they believe the individual might find it hard to keep tabs on what he is eating. There is still much the medical profession doesn't know about obesity and why certain people gain weight and others don't. With so many variables, it is no wonder that studies on this subject differ markedly in their results.
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Title Annotation:eating habits and lowering blood cholesterol
Publication:Medical Update
Date:Feb 1, 1990
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