OMAD: Is One Meal a Day Really the Best Diet Path?
An OMAD diet is a one meal a day diet that many people swear helps them lose weight and with their overall health. An OMAD diet typically restricts their calorie intake to a single meal or a short window of time to eat something, also known as fasting. The diet asks you to eat one meal a day, it doesn’t specify the time or what you should eat. OMAD is most likely related to fasting. With different types of diets becoming more popular with people, is the OMAD diet really the best diet to try?
How it works
There are many different types of ways people do the OMAD diet. The most popular ways people use this diet is by having one meal a day and then fasting the rest of the day, or having one meal a day and then eating limited amounts of food during the fasting time. This type of diet creates a calorie deficit and can lead to weight loss. Although this method might work for some people, this is one of the most extreme methods of intermittent fasting. Jillian Kubala, the author of “Is Eating one meal a day a safe and effective way to lose weight?” explains that most people who follow OMAD usually eat their only meal at dinner time and fast for the whole day before dinner. Some people though don’t consume calories during their fasting period and consume all their calories for the hour they decide to eat. Most people who use the OMAD diet are likely to lose weight because they are taking in fewer calories than they are burning.
In the article, “What you need to know about OMAD,” by Dr. Bret Scher explains that OMAD is good for people who travel a lot of the time and might not have the time to make meals for themselves all the time. For people that have busy schedules and can’t think or plan about what their next meal might be, OMAD is a good way to diet and eat a little bit healthier because the one meal you are eating is something you have been planning all day. According to Dr. Scher, OMAD can help control diabetes, improve metabolic syndrome, and with hyperinsulinemia, which is when you have extra levels of insulin circulating in the blood relative to the level of glucose.
Concerns to OMAD
Although this diet might help you lose weight, it can also have a lot of concerning parts to it. One being eating disorders. Only making yourself eat once a day may not be healthy depending on what you are eating. If you are prone to eating disorders, do not try this diet out. Another concern is that you may not be consuming enough calories to be “healthy”. If you plan to use the OMAD diet for the long term, be careful about not eating enough because it could lower resting metabolic rate, which can lead to a hard time maintaining weight loss.
OMAD can also hurt your protein intake. If you want to use this diet, make sure you eat enough protein during your meal. Protein helps you feel more full and satisfied, so make sure you can eat protein before you start this diet.
Dr. Scher also points out that this diet may make you more prone to eating more carbs. Dr. Scher recommends you only eat twenty grams or less of carbs a day to not overdo your carb intake. Feeling a little hungry and low in energy is expected but, feeling unwell, tired, dizzy, or nauseous can be unhealthy for you.
Foods to eat and foods to avoid
If the OMAD diet is something you are considering, here are some foods you should and shouldn’t eat. You should eat fruits, vegetables, starchy vegetables and grains, such as sweet potatoes and oats; healthy fats, such as avocados; legumes, such as peas and lentils; seeds and nuts, such as cashews; plant-based alternatives to dairy, such as oat milk; and of course, protein, such as chicken, eggs, and fish. Try to stay away from processed foods, such as fast food, sugary drinks, white bread, sugary cereals, and chips. For more on choosing the right foods, click here to see the benefits of eating healthy and locally!
This diet is a very severe way of fasting. If you feel like you could eat well and treat your body right during your dieting, then give it a try; but on the other hand, if you are susceptible to eating disorders or not eating enough, then this way of dieting might not be the best or most healthy option for you.