A survey has revealed that the average Briton skips a whopping five meals a week. That’s as many as 260 meals a year.
The survey, which was conducted by Huel, revealed that breakfast was the most likely meal to be skipped, despite it being widely acknowledged as the most important meal of the day. As to the reason why, two thirds of meal skippers said it was because they ‘don’t have time to eat’.
Huel are a nutritional food product, and looked at attitudes towards nutrition in the UK as part of their research into consumer habits. 2,829 British adults took part in the survey, all of whom were aged 18 years old or older. All participants were all in full-time employment at the time of the survey.
Initially, all respondents were asked to identify how many meals they skipped in an average week, including Saturday and Sunday. The results showed the average respondent skipped three breakfasts, one lunch and one dinner per week.
All relevant respondents who stated they’d missed at least one meal per week were then asked to reveal all the reasons why. The most common answers were given as follows:
When asked if they had suffered any adverse effects from skipping meals, more than two thirds of respondents (68%) confessed they had. The majority of these felt they had ‘gained weight’ due to overcompensating after missing meals (57%), while some also felt ‘short-tempered and/or irritable’ (43%) and ‘generally less healthy’ (35%).
Julian Hearn, Founder of Huel, said: “In our everyday routines, we can’t always set aside time, attention and energy to dedicate to our mealtimes. On a typical weekday, it’s not unusual to just grab a coffee while dashing out the door or work through lunch without even realising.
“Our busy lifestyles, however, are not good for us. If we skip meals we often end up over-compensate later with sugary foods later as our energy levels sag.”
It may sound counter-intuitive that by eating more we are healthier, but it’s true. Not only does it speed up out metabolism but it allows our body to gain vital fuel and nutrition when we most need it. That’s critical when your body is coming out of sleep and into action in the morning, especially when we’re running.
As runners we know how important food is, so stop cutting out meals!