Why should I eat frequent small meals if I want to boost my metabolism?

Tracy Kuzava, RDN
Nutrition & Dietetics
I have people come into my office all of the time saying, “I heard eating six times a day is better.” That really doesn't come into play with metabolism, unless you go for extended periods of time without food. Typically, I say don’t go for more than four or five hours without eating.
If you eat frequent small meals throughout the day, make sure you watch your portions and calories. If you're eating six times a day at 500 calories we're going to have a problem. If you eat six times a day at 200 or 300 calories you're going to be okay. It's about what you eat and the portion sizes.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
One of the best ways to keep your metabolism working is to eat a small meal every three hours. The plate should have three small portions -- one protein, one carbohydrate or fat and unlimited vegetables. Small, frequent meals keep things moving. The simple act of eating stimulates your metabolism by triggering digestion. Every time your body digests food, it ramps up your total metabolic rate.
This content originally appeared on

Continue Learning about Metabolism and Weight Loss

How to Hack Your Metabolism for Weight Loss
How to Hack Your Metabolism for Weight Loss
At a fundamental level, weight loss comes down to a simple formula: reduce your calorie intake, increase your activity level, and you’ll start to see ...
Read More
How can eating too little slow my metabolism?
Dolvett QuinceDolvett Quince
The body needs the vitamins, minerals and protein from food to sustain energy. When you eat too litt...
More Answers
How does sitting affect my metabolism?
Int'l Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA)Int'l Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA)
You may be busting your hump in the gym after work, but those nine hours sitting at your computer ar...
More Answers
The Protein-Packed Meals That Boost Your Metabolism
The Protein-Packed Meals That  Boost Your Metabolism

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.