To ask how many meals you eat each day?

(139 Posts)
Jolleigh Sun 16-Feb-14 22:40:41

I'm 25 and most of my friends are a similar age to me. I've found that I don't really know anyone who doesn't have children who eats 3 meals a day. I personally just eat when I'm hungry (though I'm 8 months pregnant with my first so that's more frequent nowadays). What does everyone else do?

WorraLiberty Sun 16-Feb-14 22:42:55

2 meals per day here

I stopped eating breakfast when I was about 12yrs old as I just can't stomach it.

Mim78 Sun 16-Feb-14 22:44:10

3 meals per day plus snacks/ grazing. I am 39 weeks pregnant though! And I have a dd already.

TheScience Sun 16-Feb-14 22:45:39

3 a day when working.

On mat leave now so I don't tend to eat first thing but have a snack mid-morning, so still 3 meals really.

mummywithsmiles Sun 16-Feb-14 22:46:20

At the moment I have a sandwich once a day if I'm lucky that's it lol

I just eat when I'm hungry. I rarely have more than one proper meal (i.e. one requiring cutlery) a day.

Pigletin Sun 16-Feb-14 22:46:48

3 meals a day plus (maybe) a snacks like fruit/yogurt between lunch and dinner. Most people I know/work with have similar eating habits.

Mrswellyboot Sun 16-Feb-14 22:47:04

Normally 3 a day when working but now I am on ML I tend to have a quick coffee first thing them have a late breakfast/lunch and early tea

Mug of hot milk later on

Bunbaker Sun 16-Feb-14 22:47:12

Breakfast, lunch and evening meal. I don't snack regularly as it puts me off my food.

I eat 3 a day, I thought most people did

Two. Lunch and dinner.

Jolleigh Sun 16-Feb-14 22:48:29

Breakfast is usually the skipped meal for me too Worra. And on the occasions I do eat breakfast, I hardly ever eat lunch hmm I'm just not hungry by then.

Three a day and one snack. Boring I know. When I was a teenager I could do one big meal a day - usually cheese and beans with toast or bread blush or if I had a hangover it could be an entire day of grazing from Greggs <ahem>

FanFuckingTastic Sun 16-Feb-14 22:48:52

Usually two to three.

MorrisZapp Sun 16-Feb-14 22:49:05

Most people eat three meals a day plus the odd bit of whatever as well.

harticus Sun 16-Feb-14 22:50:39

3 meals a day.

BerryMojito Sun 16-Feb-14 22:52:18

Am up at 6 and have breakfast then. Lunch around 1 and then home about 6, dinner about 8 once DCs are all home. Not sure I could skip any of those as they are the only times I get to eat.

harriet247 Sun 16-Feb-14 22:54:20


WorraLiberty Sun 16-Feb-14 22:55:23

I don't really see not eating breakfast as skipping a meal though

I just eat when I'm hungry and that's very rarely before 11.30am at the earliest.

17leftfeet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:55:52

I eat breakfast and dinner

I graze during the day but only eat lunch if I'm meeting someone but then I don't bother with dinner

DoJo Sun 16-Feb-14 22:56:57

Often one - I frequently don't get hungry until dinner time, but if I am then I will have a late breakfast and then dinner.

AntiJamDidi Sun 16-Feb-14 22:58:14

3 most days. Sometimes I don't quite have time for breakfast but generally grab some fruit or a cereal bar to eat on the way to work.

BobaFetaCheese Sun 16-Feb-14 22:59:14

One meal, I eat when I'm hungry and I don't really get hungry until midafternoon, when I do eat breakfast, I enjoy it but I've never been able to keep it up for long (ex-eating disorder so never had the best relationship with food).

I'm 26 and only DH and PIL eat breakfast out of most people I know.

MoreBeta Sun 16-Feb-14 23:01:47

Two meals per day - breakfast and lunch. I don't eat after about 1.30 pm until about 07.30 am the following day. That's 17 hours! shock

I cant sleep if eat after that and get terrible acid reflux. I have drinks of course and maybe a biscuit sometimes if I have been doing physical work.

SetPhasersTaeMalkie Sun 16-Feb-14 23:03:43

I have 3 meals. Breakfast can be a struggle so if I do skip a meal it is breakfast.

KristinaM Sun 16-Feb-14 23:04:27

Morebeta -please consider visiting your GP about the reflux.

How do you define a meal? I just eat what I feel like, when I feel like. So I can be eating on anything between about 2 and 20 occasions in a day. I'm not sure which of those eating occasions would be defined as a meal though ...

Urbanvoltaire Sun 16-Feb-14 23:14:59

2 1/2, porridge for breakfast, biggish lunch then a snack in dcs have 3. I tend to eat their leftovers in the eve.

Pipbin Sun 16-Feb-14 23:15:32

3, doesn't everyone?
That said, I only tend to eat lunch when I'm at work.
When I'm off we generally go out for breakfast, then a bit of a toast or some such for lunch then a proper dinner.

I was surprised at the number of people on a thread a while ago who said that they don't get a lunch break at work.

WorraLiberty Sun 16-Feb-14 23:25:17

Actually it's weird but I do eat breakfast on holiday

When we go on a caravan break I'll wake up, have a coffee, walk to the paper shop and then stick a mini fry up on about 10am.

Having said that, I wouldn't bother with lunch so would just have dinner about 6pm.

manicinsomniac Mon 17-Feb-14 00:34:20

3 a day but timings can be erratic

squeakytoy Mon 17-Feb-14 01:22:19

One main meal usually at lunch and a small meal early evening.. Never snack

mrswishywashy1 Mon 17-Feb-14 01:24:29

3 a day and loads of snacking in between and then I wonder why I'm so fat sad

Bogeyface Mon 17-Feb-14 01:24:46

6 children, one meal, food issues.

Jolleigh Mon 17-Feb-14 05:00:52

mrswishywashy - I only eat 2 and I'm fat. I definitely make up for eating fewer meals with larger meal sizes.

wowfudge Mon 17-Feb-14 05:20:36

Three a day - just don't feel right or function well without breakfast in the mornings.

MrsMook Mon 17-Feb-14 05:45:39

3 and always did. Breakfast can be quite light like a yoghurt and banana. I'm not a sandwhich lover, so given the chance will have something like beans on tosst. I've often had school dinners ar work. Proper meal. In the evening. I'm not much of a snacker but can have a weak point at 5pm. Going lonng chunks of time without eating is not good for your metabolism. Last year DP was gaining weight on too few calories because his breakfast and lunch were too light, abd he calorie loaded in the evening and his body hoarded them. By introducing some nuts mid morning, the calorie boost balanced out his metabolism better and hes stopped gaining weight.

When I'm working 13 hour shifts I tend to just have a big lunch. When I'm off I have lunch and dinner.

I've always been a poor eater and I also smoke which is bad for my appetite. I need to give up and put weight on. Last year I put on a stone after quitting and loved food and my figure but stupidly started again.

singaporeswing Mon 17-Feb-14 05:48:04

2 meal a day, lunch and dinner. Very, very rarely snack.

Thumbwitch Mon 17-Feb-14 05:48:55

1-2 meals a day.
Breakfast is very difficult for me, has been since I was a child as I need to have been awake a while before I can face food, and I'm a late riser.
Lunch is hit and miss - I can get away with just a piece of cheese some days, others I'm really hungry.
Dinner is the only meal that I will definitely have these days, and that's only because of DH! If he's not here, then I don't always have a cooked dinner either - might just have cheese and crackers.

The DSs always get breakfast, lunch and dinner though.

HungryHorace Mon 17-Feb-14 06:09:16

3 meals a day here, plus the odd snack here or there (fruit at work, anything I can grab at the moment as I'm on mat leave and pregnant again!).

I'm always ready for breakfast as I tend to wake hungry, and I'm hungry at lunch and dinner time too.

My DH is the same as me, thankfully.

Snowdown Mon 17-Feb-14 08:50:51

2 meals a day - no snacks. I eat around noon and around 7.00pm. Lots of hot drinks and water.

LoveIsTheDrug Mon 17-Feb-14 08:53:40

2-3 smallish-medium portions. Slightly bigger lunch portions on days I run.

defineme Mon 17-Feb-14 09:01:25

3 meals and 1 or 2 snacks like a piece of fruit.

if an average women needs 2000 calories a day-how do you fit them into 1 or 2 meals? Even when I've been doing a low calorie diet I've had 3 meals a day and no snacks.

I am hungry when I wake up and then about every 4 to 5 hours.

lljkk Mon 17-Feb-14 09:12:25

I snack constantly. I suppose it tends to look like 3 small meals + 5 snacks. More if you counted each cup of tea as a snack. Takes me a few hours before I can eat breakfast, too, and can't eat too close to bedtime or that keeps me wake (everything provokes my insomnia).

londonrach Mon 17-Feb-14 09:18:48

Three but hate breakfast so often skip. If hubby and i go out for lunch on sat or sun we often skip dinner and just have yog or fruit. If not hungry why eat. I drink water most of the day, even if just a sip.

JennyCalendar Mon 17-Feb-14 09:26:01

Usually 2.

I eat a sandwich or toast at about 10.30 and then have a proper tea at about 5.30. I will sometimes have a biscuit or 2 in between if I'm peckish.

Like another poster, I do eat breakfast if I'm on holiday or in a hotel and it's included, but then I don't have lunch (maybe a cake or pastry).

Snowdown Mon 17-Feb-14 09:26:20

I think the average woman needs much less that 2000 kcal a day. If I am not exercising i need only 1600kcal a day and I'm 5ft 8in.

HadABadDay2014 Mon 17-Feb-14 09:27:55

When I am hungry.

Tbh I haven't eaten since Saturday as I am not hungry.

ProfPlumSpeaking Mon 17-Feb-14 09:31:09

Two meals a day. Usually coffee first thing then early lunch and supper. At the weekends, I will eat a late cooked breakfast but then I don't feel hungry for lunch so I might skip or I might have a bowl of soup.

I think 3 meals a day is usually too much unless one of the meals is very light (just a single piece of toast, say, or a banana, or a bowl of vegetable soup) unless you have a physical job, that is.

3 meals and 2 snacks, usually.

Breakfast an hour or so after getting up. Lunch, Supper - I like supper fairly early (and since moving to wales have started to call it tea, coming to think of it).

Snacks (if I'm at home) some fruit or yogurt or random item from the fridge. If I'm in the office, whatever's around (biscuit, cake).

On days when I'm in the gym (4 days/week) I'll usually have a banana before I go, breakfast when I get back and then a larger than usual snack/2nd breakfast later in the morning.

Earlier in the year I monitored my food intake really carefully (MFP and weighing everything) and discovered that I need about 2500-3000 calories a day to maintain my current weight and activity levels shock.

I feel best if I eat enough calories spread across around 5 meals/snacks a day with fruit and/or veg and protein at every meal/snack.

If I eat too little, too infrequently or too badly (I have a bad habit of resorting to toast and marmite, and chocolate if I'm busy and on my own) I feel really grim quite quickly. Delicate flower, I am.

Quietattheback Mon 17-Feb-14 09:35:54

Used to be three but have recently changed my eating patterns and only eat when hungry now which means I now eat two meals a day plus some fruit and nuts as a snack. I could probably eat smaller portions as well but am going for baby steps, so will address that in a month or so.

I have loads more energy and sleep better since making the change.

OnIlkleyMoorBahTwat Mon 17-Feb-14 10:06:18

Three plus one or two snacks. In an ideal world I have a big breakfast, late lunch and small evening meal.

I get closest to this on holiday (usually Spain) where I really take advantage of the hotel buffet (2 to 3 medium sized plates of eg - cold meat/omelette/tomatoes, pastries and bread and cheese, plus coffee and cava).

We then usually have a large lunch out eg Menu del dia - 2 courses, at about 2-3 pm. Despite the big breakfast, I'm very hungry by then and will snack if we don't eat before 3 ish.

We then go for tapas in the evening and I will only pick at bits as I'm not that hungry, wheras DP will eat more. If we go for an evening meal I will usually just get a starter or a light main course, as I know I won't be able to eat a whole meal.

I just can't do the 'eat little for breakfast and lunch and then a proper dinner' as I will spend all day starving and miserable.

firesidechat Mon 17-Feb-14 10:10:48

3 meals a day without fail.

MoreBeta Mon 17-Feb-14 10:19:19

KristinaM - I have been to my GP and consultant about it. They say take Gaviscon as I cant take Ranitidine and Omeprazole.

I have many chronic health issues so its a question of which ones I talk to my GP about. If they are reasonably under control I tend not to bother until something quite serious happens.

Beeyump Mon 17-Feb-14 10:26:58

2, because breakfast sucks.

CremeEggThief Mon 17-Feb-14 10:29:40

Three and an afternoon snack usually, although occasionally I have brunch instead of breakfast and lunch.

goodasitgets Mon 17-Feb-14 10:33:21

Usually 3, but if I'm working 2 and snacks at work then will skip tea. Always eat breakfast

yegodsandlittlefishes Mon 17-Feb-14 10:37:29

One evening meal a day, and occasional fruit or piece of toast or yogurt, but mostly just coffee breakfast and lunch.

BabyStone Mon 17-Feb-14 10:39:40

Normally 3 sometimes I miss breakfast but I eat snacks/fruit etc through out the and normally end up sharing food with DS

LucyLasticBand Mon 17-Feb-14 10:40:26

three meals

EatShitDerek Mon 17-Feb-14 10:45:14

Probably 1 meal a day. That might even be a sandwich and then grazing on a night.

It depends on when I am hungry. Some days I will eat nothing and others I will eat like I have never been fed

mumeeee Mon 17-Feb-14 11:43:02

Usually 3 meals unless I've had a very big lunch then woule just have a light snack in the evening

GreenShadow Mon 17-Feb-14 11:55:01

Wow, this is a revelation.

Like others, I assumed that everyone ate 3 meals a day.

For me breakfast is the most important meal of the day - I couldn't go without it. That's not to say that I have a lot, but what I do have I need.
I then usually have a light lunch and main meal in the evening but personally I would probably prefer to have a big meal at lunch time as we do on Sunday then very little in the evening.

fatlazymummy Mon 17-Feb-14 12:11:57

3 meals a day, and usually 2 or 3 snacks as well.
I don't eat big meals as I feel full up quite quickly. I wouldn't be able to eat enough calories if I only ate one or two meals a day.

bragmatic Mon 17-Feb-14 13:19:04

2 or 3, Almost never snacks. It's mostly healthy. I just don't have a big appetite. Never have.

KristinaM Mon 17-Feb-14 14:10:19

More beta -I just wanted to check that you were getting medical advice smile

KristinaM Mon 17-Feb-14 14:22:21

I suspect there are a few posters on this thread with food issues sad

Not eating for two days because you are not hungry is not healthy. Neither is surviving on coffe, biscuits and cigarettes or a sandwich and snacks. Unless the " snacks " are fruit and vegetables and proteins like nuts, beans, fish , chicken etc. but I suspect they are in fact crisps, biscuits and cakes.

If this is you, please get yourself some advice and support to eat more heathily. There are lots of very supportive threads here on MN, for a start.

Kendodd Mon 17-Feb-14 14:26:47

I miss breakfast and all of us, children included, only have one big 'main' meal a day.

OnIlkleyMoorBahTwat Mon 17-Feb-14 14:30:33

YY Kristina. Reading this thread, I keep wondering, 'aren't these people starving all the time? But it seems like people are trying to avoid eating, whenever possible.

A relative of mine has not eaten a cooked meal in about 10 years. She claims to 'just not like food' but I don't think its an eating disorder in that she is scared of getting fat - in reality I don't know why and I think that maybe she doesn't either - it just seems so alien to me - I love food and I love eating grin.

She exists on sugared tea, biscuits, sandwiches of a few limited varieties and chocolate. She is thin, but sooo unhealthy and each time she has been pregnant, she has ended up in hospital with severe anaemia and other complications sad.

BackforGood Mon 17-Feb-14 14:32:35

3 or 4 if I know I'm not going to be eating until late in the evening.

I too think some of the posters on here are really not eating in a very healthy way.

MoreBeta Mon 17-Feb-14 14:32:53

KristinaM - yes I was thinking that too when reading the posts. Lots of potential food issues for people on here.

Thanks for your advice, it was well taken. My DW tells me to go to the doctor about once a week too and you are right of course. I really should go but its so 'hand wavey' and vague my condition with so many symptoms.

I'm a bloke. I should be either a) fighting fit or b) slumped in A&E with some bit of me obviously missing.

I cant be doing with 'feeling a iffy most of the time but not really bad'. I want a proper illness. On you can really get your teeth into. grin

OnIlkleyMoorBahTwat Mon 17-Feb-14 14:37:17

I can't help wondering what the long term consequences are of such poor quality eating?

We are told we need vitamins and minerals and healthy proteins etc, which a diet of toast, biscuits and crisps must be lacking in, but people who eat like this appear to function more or less normally, except that they are probably a bit pale and tired most of the time, but they are alive? How will it effect their health eventually, compared to people who eat better?

motherinferior Mon 17-Feb-14 14:37:24

I've always eaten three meals a day. And usually some sort of mid-afternoon snack - could be nuts, or a bit of yogurt or suchlike, but otherwise I crumble by around 5pm, which makes it hard to keep going to 7pm which is when I eat dinner.

I find all this pressure on women to cut meals and say "oh, I'm not really hungry" or "I'm not really a breakfaster" or "I've never been a pudding sort of person"* quite stressful, really. I cannot function without breakfast. Or lunch. Or dinner.

There was a thread once asking if everyone ate five (a mere five!) portions of fruit and veg a day and someone went on about how she couldn't possibly eat all that much.

*I don't eat masses of puddings, or anything. But I like pudding.

motherinferior Mon 17-Feb-14 14:38:40

MoreBeta, there is always an exciting chance your doctor might diagnose you with something really Blokey.

Joysmum Mon 17-Feb-14 14:43:38

The meals aren't the issue, it's the snacks!

Thumbwitch Mon 17-Feb-14 14:51:12

I would also question the "I'm not hungry" thing; appetite is in part controlled by zinc levels in the body (zinc is a necessary part of the appetite controlling mechanism, and also necessary for being able to taste things properly) - so if you don't eat properly for an extended period of time, then it's quite likely that your zinc levels are not at their optimum, which could affect both your taste capability and your appetite, making it a bit of a vicious circle.

NekoChan Mon 17-Feb-14 15:01:19

I love breakfast as I'm ravenous by then! I eat 3 meals plus tea and biscuits a few times a day. I have a fast metabolism and am breastfeeding so I'm losing weight on that amount.

EatShitDerek Mon 17-Feb-14 15:18:53

No eating disorder here. Just not much of an eater and never have been. Even just drinking fills me up.

Been like this since I was young. Siblings all eat more than me

Bunbaker Mon 17-Feb-14 15:37:48

"I think 3 meals a day is usually too much unless one of the meals is very light (just a single piece of toast, say, or a banana, or a bowl of vegetable soup) unless you have a physical job, that is."

I count breakfast and lunch as meals even though they are small meals. I am never hungry first thing in the morning and can't get my head around the fact that some people wake up hungry. But I always have breakfast - a small bowl of porridge, a small bowl of cereal or a slice of toast, plus a cup of tea.

Lunch is usually a light meal. Today I had some soup and a roll (no butter). Often I will have salad or a sandwich.

I eat more in the evening and tonight I am doing sausages and mash with loads of vegetables. I can't face fruit early in the morning, and make up my five a day at lunchtime and in the evening instead. I don't snack very often as it puts me off my food.

I agree that there are a lot of posters with unhealthy eating patterns on here.

Have I understood correctly Kendodd that your children only get one meal a day? Or is it two small meals and one big meal (which is what we do)?

motherinferior Mon 17-Feb-14 15:42:42

And all this 'just eating when I feel like' is more than fuel! I like eating a meal, a nice proper meal in the evenings with my fellow-inmates of the Inferiority Complex. And indeed being hungry for that meal means not having eaten a large amount at, say 5pm and that in turn means eating lunch (and possibly the aforementioned small snack).

Food is nice. Nice food is particularly nice. Life is short. Eat nice food. With other people in a sociable sort of manner. Or failing that a decent book.

MoreBeta Mon 17-Feb-14 15:52:20

*motherinferior - "something blokey".

As I joked to a friend the other day. Now I have incipient osteoperosis that means the medical profession think of me as having the body of a 70 year old woman. They like to categorise things.

In the old days it would have been something like a slightly less than fatal jab from a broadsword during a battle or gout from too much wassailing.

Instead I get an old lady disease. This is not what I planned for my dotage. hmm

teaandthorazine Mon 17-Feb-14 15:58:20

Food is indeed delicious and fabulous, but no point in eating if you're not hungry.

1-2 meals a day here. Never eat breakfast, can't stand eating until I've been up for at least a couple of hours.

If I'm in the office, I'll usually have something around lunchtime, more for the break than anything else. If I'm at home, 'lunch' can be anything anywhere between 11-3pm.

Will usually have dinner with ds around 7ish.

No eating disorders here either! Always had a small appetite and now I'm older I limit carbohydrates and eat plenty of fat which means my blood glucose is much more stable and I very rarely get ravenous.

3 meals, ideally all hot!

Ie porridge or eggs for breakast, or bacon roll

Hot lunch ( baked potato with filling, pasta, noodle soup, grilled cheese)

Hot dinner (meat and 2 veg, shep pie, stir fry, pasta, rice or similar)

I find grazing and snacking not very satisfying.

Also, it seems that on 3 square meals a day one's weight remains stable.

SadFreak Mon 17-Feb-14 16:03:17

Once a day. I usually have a peice of fruit about 2pm. Occassionally a yogurt about 4pm and eat a meal about 6.30/7pm.

Thats it.

OnIlkleyMoorBahTwat Mon 17-Feb-14 16:05:05

YY Cliff I also much prefer hot food and hate when I have to eat cold food, eg, when out and about and the only choice is sandwiches etc. I don't understand the people who don't/won't eat more than one cooked meal per day.

I also agree that cooked food helps keep weight stable and I think that this is because the alternative (sandwiches/biscuits/crisps/cakes) are much more carby and calorific, so when people say 'I'm not very hungry, I'll just have a sandwich' they are actually consuming more calories than if they had had a cooked meal in lots of cases.

Jolleigh Mon 17-Feb-14 16:06:27

Those of you who are commenting that some people here have unhealthy eating patterns, would you consider my (pre-pregnancy) pattern unhealthy?

I'd only eat twice a day. Either breakfast or lunch (normally an earlier poster mentioned, breakfast food is rubbish!), plus a large evening meal. Evening meals are always cooked from scratch (I love cooking and eating). If I'm hungry between meals, I'll drink and possibly have a snack, often fruit.

Is it the fact that I don't eat 3 square meals that makes it unhealthy?

I can find eating with female friends a bit of a challenge.

As they seem to eat so little, I feel like a freak with my steak and ake pie with mash....ahem.

I wonder if a fast metabolism is something you are born with, or something that develops depending on eating habbits?

I find it a mixed blessing, skipping a meal can make me feel right ratty, tearful even.

OnIlkleymorebat, YES, I hate a sandwich from the fridge! So unsatisfying you then need crisps. Or chocolate. And not even enjoy it.

Dollslikeyouandme Mon 17-Feb-14 16:18:26

When I'm working 3, being cereal for breakfast, sandwich for lunch and hot meal for tea, plus snacks.

Weekends maybe 2 plus snacks as might have a late breakfast and an early bigger tea.

Bunbaker Mon 17-Feb-14 16:23:46

"I don't understand the people who don't/won't eat more than one cooked meal per day"

For a start, I am not prepared to cook two meals a day, secondly I don't have the appetite for two cooked meals a day either as my other meals are small snack like meals.

Littleen Mon 17-Feb-14 16:26:25

2-3 depending on what I can afford. Often swap with OH so that atleast one of us have dinner every day. Not optimal when pregnant but hey ho! Have to have something for breakfast though, or I can't function smile

Pigletin Mon 17-Feb-14 16:32:50

I don't understand the people who don't/won't eat more than one cooked meal per day

I think this is quite typical for the UK. For some reason there is an attitude that one cooked meal a day is more than enough. It is quite different in other countries where every meal tends to be cooked. To each his own I guess.

MummyPig24 Mon 17-Feb-14 17:19:43

I have 3 meals. I don't usually snack. I have two children and I am 36 weeks pregnant.

herladyship Mon 17-Feb-14 17:27:02

7am - breakfast
12.30 - lunch (usually soup or salad)
about 4pm I have a piece of fruit
7.30/8 - dinner

I'm a creature of habit! grin

honeybunny14 Mon 17-Feb-14 17:32:33

3 meals per day

HavantGuard Mon 17-Feb-14 17:37:10

That's pretty extreme MoreBeta. Have you had it checked out by a doctor?

HavantGuard Mon 17-Feb-14 17:40:06

And 4 meals a day. One at around 05:30, something at 11am a snack at about 3pm and dinner at about 8pm. The 'meals' could be anything from a big plate of veg and meat/fish to a handful of walnuts.

Suzannewithaplan Mon 17-Feb-14 17:43:56

I eat 3 x per day, similar amounts/calories each time, no snacks

KristinaM Mon 17-Feb-14 17:44:15

I'm not a dietician , but AKAIK there is nothing magic about the number 3, the shape of the meals or the temperature of the food. It's about the balance and quality of what you are eating. Some people also find that if they go without eating for too long they get unpleasant symptoms.

I think most people know that surviving all day on coffee or diet drinks, biscuits and fags isn't very healthy. You might not be overweight but you are not looking after your body :-(

I eat loads compared to many of you on this thread, but I exercise most days and use an extra 700-900 calories so I'm a healthy weight . But I still don't eat crap all day .

MoominIsGoingToBeAMumEEEEK Mon 17-Feb-14 17:47:56

Usually two, sometimes get away with one. If I have breakfast, I skip lunch. If I skip breakfast, I'll have lunch. Always have cooked dinner, other than when OH is working lates because I can get away with not eating dinner, cooking his and telling him I ate earlier.

Previously suffered with bulimia and periods of not eating at all. Thought I was completely recovered but being pregnant has really ruined my body image and I feel massive guilt if I eat. I only snack on fruit, other than rare occasions I feel like I can handle the guilt if I do eat chocolate. I hate being like this and it's making it hard to enjoy pregnancy sad

2 here - a decent cooked breakfast, and then dinner in the evenings. I don't get hungry in the middle of the day. I'm (mostly) low carbing though, so probably not typical.

Pollywallywinkles Mon 17-Feb-14 18:00:50

It depends on what a meal is and what I'm doing.

If I'm working locally, I tend to have 3 meals a day. If I'm in and out at meetings which tend to be at a lunchtime, I probably have 2 meals with a snack before I go off to a meeting and another one when I get back - is that 4 meals? If I have an evening meeting, will have a snack before that and a light snack when I get home.

On weekends if we are at home and get up at a reasonable time we probably have 3 meals, but if we get up late and are going out probably 2 meals.

StrawberryCheese Mon 17-Feb-14 18:02:05

I was going to say three meals a day but in reality I probably skip breakfast most mornings before work as I don't have time and don't want to get up any earlier!

Lunch I probably have on 4 out of 5 working days (never have it at the weekend) and dinner I will have every day except when I'm working late, which happens 2 days a week.

So really I am in complete denial.

scantilymad Mon 17-Feb-14 18:02:49

30 here.

Smoothie for breakfast.
Usually omelette or red bull for lunch.
Decent meal for supper but nothing after 7pm and rarely dessert.
I don't think the sedentary lifestyle of most people combined with the higher levels of refined sugars, bad fats and cholesterol in a lot of foods nowadays allows "three square meals".

NinjaCow Mon 17-Feb-14 18:04:45

I usually skip breakfast (too tired and rushed) and lunch. So supper only, technically, but I have a proper snack (tuna on toast or something, not like crisps) when I get back, so more like 2, or 1.5.

FederationPresidentBarryFife Mon 17-Feb-14 18:06:15


Kid's breakfast leftovers.
My breakfast.
Kids leftover tea
My dinner.

And I wonder why IO have put weight on since becoming a SAHM!!!

Suzannewithaplan Mon 17-Feb-14 18:11:53

I only eat when I'm hungry, but I'm pretty much always hungry at the times I habitually eat.
I suppose I do occasionally feel a passing desire for food outside of my regular mealtimes but I just ignore it and it goes away.

I'm wondering what the difference is between a snack and a meal?

boodles Mon 17-Feb-14 18:13:35

Three good meals a day, one snack and sometimes supper. I walk a lot, workout a lot and need the calories. My bmi is 19 so I am deffo not over eating. Those who only eat once or twice a day, how do you do it? I get hangry if I don't eat as much as I do.

Bunbaker Mon 17-Feb-14 18:24:51

I need to eat and drink regularly otherwise I get a migraine. Like Suzannewithaplan I find that I am hungry at mealtimes. That said, I only start cooking the evening meal when I feel the first vestiges of hunger. I find it very difficult to cook when I am not hungry.

Em1503 Mon 17-Feb-14 18:34:25

3 meals plus snacking. I can't function in the morning without breakfast. Also I'm hungry and ready for lunch and dinner every day, no way I could miss a meal!

pussycatdoll Mon 17-Feb-14 18:36:28

Where I work breaks are regulated

So I eat breakfast at 7am

Coffee break at work - 15 minutes sitting down in staff room so I have coffee & a satsuma & ignore the plethora of biscuits & cakes

Lunch break between 1-2pm - would be boringly dull if I didn't eat then ! I take a packed lunch with me, sometimes salad, sometimes sandwiches,

3.15pm - again tea break in staff room ( my job is on a public service counter so can only take breaks when told ) I have coffee & an apple

Home at 6pm

Dinner at 7pm

I'd say I'm average amongst my family & friends
No one I know only eats 1 meal a day

LettertoHermioneGranger Mon 17-Feb-14 18:40:12

When I'm on a regular schedule, classes/work, three a day plus snacks. Big breakfast is essential - my whole day will be wrecked if I don't have enough breakfast. My lunch and dinner are lighter.

When I have time off, it's much more erratic. Maybe two late meals, sometimes one with snacking throughout.

ADishBestEatenCold Mon 17-Feb-14 18:44:11

Too many!

Glitterfeet Mon 17-Feb-14 18:55:58

3 meals and snacks if I'm hungry.

Breakfast - toast in the car.

Mid morning - fruit or a biscuit.

Lunch - usually soup.

Often a bowl of salad as dinner is cooking.

Dinner - normal stuff. Stew, stir fry, chicken breast, pasta. I try to make sure the carb portion is sensible.

Later, something like yogurt, or something sweet.

EatShitDerek Mon 17-Feb-14 18:58:27

I had a McDonald's burger at 1ish and now eating a ham and cheese bagel. Might have a snack later while I watch hostages, the strawberries and cream in the fridge look like they want eating wink

Bunbaker Mon 17-Feb-14 19:04:34

I'm amazed at the number of posters who need to snack through the day.

I have the occasional snack - say if is someone's birthday at work and they bring in cakes, but generally I don't get hungry between meals.

EvenBetter Mon 17-Feb-14 19:12:27

One meal in the evening, and between 12 and the evening I eat loads of crisps...

KingR0llo Mon 17-Feb-14 19:17:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

thegreylady Mon 17-Feb-14 19:19:56

Breakfast usually an egg or porridge then toast
Lunch either homemade soup or a sandwich
Dinner a cooked meal, usually one course occasionally two
Drinks/snacks as in a cuppa and a biscuit twice a day

bakeroony Mon 17-Feb-14 19:23:20

3 plus snacks/grazing, but my meals are quite small:

Breakfast: small bowl of cereal

Lunch: Soup, something like cheese & pate & crackers (if at home), a more substantial meal at work (salad, cooked meal with meat or fish)

Dinner: Slightly larger version of lunch

I am terrible for leaving a lot of food on my plate. I just don't like over-eating as it makes me feel bloated and ill. So I make up for it by eating as I work.

MoreBeta Mon 17-Feb-14 19:41:06

HavantGuard - yes I have had it checked out by a doctor.

Alisvolatpropiis Mon 17-Feb-14 19:42:38

One proper meal (evening) and a very light lunch.

vichill Mon 17-Feb-14 19:46:44

I am always hungry and thinking about eating. I graze and eat a lot volume wise but minimize the damage by only having healthy stuff in.

massive pile of bran for breakfast with a banana
toast and marmite or a sandwich for lunch
few portions of fruit a day
couple of biscuits
pasta, curry etc bulked out with veg or salad for tea

bmi used to be 35 but now 23. I will have to manage my portions and ditch the digestives when I stop bfing.
its a constant battle with the inner glutton but definitely worth it.

I'm a bit random in what and when i eat through the day, though I try to have something earlyish, sometime mid-morning.
Then I cook supper for us all in the evening.
So really, on average it's two, brunch and supper, with plenty of reasonably healthy snacks/grazing through the day too.
eg today I had a couple of tangerines and some dates

HavantGuard Mon 17-Feb-14 19:51:12

OK. It must be a total arse.

So nobody hovers up their DCs leftovers? I don't do this so much anymore but when mine were small I ate the equivalent of 5 full meals. It's a miracle I am not any fatter than I am.

Suzannewithaplan Mon 17-Feb-14 20:02:07

no I find other peoples leftovers distinctly unappetising

mizu Mon 17-Feb-14 20:09:46

3 meals a day plus snacks/grazing in afternoon and evening.

Always pretty healthy meals but do like my crisps and chocolate.

Never been on a diet though, couldn't do it but I am lucky as am tall and slim.

If I didn't have breakfast, I would pass out at work. In fact I need to eat regularly otherwise I feel a bit rough grin

I was brought up on 3 meals a day with nothing in between except maybe a piece of fruit or a biscuit if the next meal will be a bit later than us, and that's how bringing my children up. No emotional food issues. No weight issues. No food cravings or blood sugar problems. I think it's the heathy way to eat really.

Cereal or toast for breakfast (between 7.15 and 9am depending on work v weekend), sandwich/soup/something on toast for lunch (between 12-1.30). Main meal somewhere between 6.30-8pm.

I don't get hungry in between when my meals are apread out like that so don't snack on crisps and biscuits and cakes in between. If I ever miss a meal or have to wait much later than usual for it then I get ratty when my blood sugar drops and just snack on crap cos I'm starving so I really try to avoid that happening. I get irritated when dh's family book a table in a restaurant for, say, 3pm. I really don't know what that meal is - is it lunch? Because I would have eaten something at 1 because I would have been too starving to wait till 3 pm. Is it tea? Ditto - far too early if I've had lunch at 12.30. The one day of the year that I don't mind eating the main meal of the day at 3pm is Xmas Day cos we would have all been stuffing ourselves with chocolates and nice stuff all morning so can easily wait till 3!

I really think there is something in the old fashioned way of eating meals that is healthy. Fast food that's available at all hours, and fad diets have really not had a good impact on our health or weight as a society.

Later than USUAL

I had a friend who used to say Mummy pickers big knickers!

WorraLiberty Mon 17-Feb-14 21:12:41

So nobody hovers up their DCs leftovers?

No, they go in the bin or in the dog.

BigFatGoalie Mon 17-Feb-14 21:40:10

5 small meals a day, 3 hours a part.
But I do weight training / cardio 6 days a week, so I need protein to feed my muscle growth.
Have a 18 month DD. When not training my eating is terrible!

VikingLady Mon 17-Feb-14 21:44:54

Anywhere between 2 and 5, depending on the day! If DD has been challenging, usually closer to 5....

CromeYellow Mon 17-Feb-14 23:21:22

I usually eat three meals a day. Sometimes I skip lunch if I'm busy. I always eat a good breakfast because I do an intense hour to hour and a half workout every morning and need enough fuel to get through it.

If I'm hungry after dinner I'll have a piece of fruit to snack.

Sad51 Mon 17-Feb-14 23:32:19

I eat breakfast between 10 and 11am, lunch of soup around 2pm and my evening meal between 7 and 8pm.

My snacks include fruit, breadsticks, nuts, yoghurt and plain biscuits.

If I need a choc fix I drink Sainsbury's Fairtrade cocoa at 36 calories for 2 heaped teaspoons as long as you do not add sugar or milk.

I have cut down on sugar and feel much better for it. No sugar in hot drinks, no sweets.

MummyPig24 Tue 18-Feb-14 07:59:56

I don't tend to eat the dcs leftovers. Ds would never leave leftovers, and by the time dd is finished her leftovers are cold mush and not at all appealing!

I'm overweight so I know my portions are too big as I don't tend to snack much. But I still prefer to eat 3 meals a day.

cory Tue 18-Feb-14 09:13:22

3 a day plus sometimes a snack if I'm working late and a plain cup of coffee mid-morning.

I find eating like this encourages me to stick to a healthier (more boring) diet. I don't know what other people are like but if I'm walking round the house snacking I hardly ever feel like snacking on a piece of sprout or half a boiled potato. I end up eating less healthy food because of its instant snack qualities. If I want to eat what I think I should be eating (vegetables, root vegetables, good quality meat properly prepared), then I need the encouragement of a proper sitdown.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now