What I Learned From Eating One Meal a Day For 28 Days

What I Learned From Eating One Meal a Day For 28 Days

From the beginning of April 2019, I’ve been experimenting with eating just one meal a day, also known as the OMAD diet.

I stumbled across the OMAD diet a few years ago after researching optimum vegan diets that increase longevity and weight loss.

After getting lost in a YouTube session, I came across this vegan strongman who appeared to be living in the middle of nowhere committed to powerlifting and eating one sizeable plant-based meal each day.

I was inspired to try OMAD, but like many of us, I procrastinated to prioritise my health because I had too much work on at the time.

But after quitting my full-time job to go all-in on The Minimalist Vegan, I found myself with more bandwidth to focus on my health.

In addition to eating one meal a day, I started doing light resistance exercise, increased my average sleep and started a regular practice of stretching. I’m no longer running on adrenals and feel more rested and relaxed.

It’s amazing what lightening your load on commitments can do to for your health!

Note: this post was updated on September 2nd, 2019.

But out of all of the new healthy habits, OMAD was the most impactful by far. And in this post, I’m going to share what I’ve learned through my month-long experiment.

Specifically, I’m going to share:

  • A brief explanation of the OMAD diet
  • The time of the day I eat my one meal
  • My challenges with drinks (i.e. coffee)
  • The benefits I’ve found since starting OMAD
  • Things I’ll change if I choose to continue this way of eating
  • My OMAD update

Quick caveat: I’m by no means a health professional, and I did not seek any medical advice before starting my OMAD diet. I’m purely sharing my experience with you to give you real insight and feedback from what it’s like to eat one meal a day. If you want to try out the OMAD diet, I suggest you seek advice or at least do your own research.

With that out of the way, let’s get into it.

What is the OMAD diet?

Eating one meal a day is a form of intermittent fasting or time-restricted eating. Intermittent fasting is usually when you would eat in an 8-hour window, say 12 pm to 8 pm and fast for the other 16 hours (including sleep). People in the know of this approach would refer to the split as the 16:8 fast.

OMAD takes intermittent fasting to another level with your eating window decreased to 1 hour, leaving you with 23 hours to fast. This is a 23:1 ratio.

OMAD

When is the best time of the day to eat your one meal a day?

From what I’ve read online, it’s common for folks on an OMAD diet to eat in the evenings. I couldn’t find any specific reason as to why evenings became the recommended time window.

During my experiment, I chose to eat my one meal sometime between 12 pm and 2 pm. There was no science behind my decision; it just felt right.

Having said that, though, when you eat just one meal a day, you are tasked to consume a significant amount of food in a short amount of time. So for those of us who get tired after lunch, because your body is busy digesting food, this feeling is undoubtedly amplified when you’re eating a supersized meal.

I have the benefit of working from home and can control my hours. So after lunch, I tend to rest for a while before getting back into work.

For this reason, I can understand why it might make more sense to have your eating window in the evenings, to sustain more energy during the day, and avoid the afternoon crash.

What can you drink on an OMAD diet?

With any intermittent fasting, it’s vital to ensure you’re adequately hydrated. So for sure, during my OMAD experiment, I drank more water than usual. I couldn’t tell you how many litres on average, but I always like to ensure that I’m adequately hydrated, which you can test by the clarity of your urine.

But outside of water, I did drink coffee and tea. Now, most intermittent fasting guides will advise that you can only consume calorie-free drinks when fasting. So this would include black coffee and herbal tea.

Upon further research, I found that some health experts suggest that these drinks are not advisable to consume during a fast as coffee and tea contain xenobiotics which needs to be processed by your liver or gut.

Okay, I must admit that I did have coffee and tea with either nut or soy milk, about 50% of the month.

So if I were a purist, I wasn’t technically fasting by the book. This is my next challenge, which I will discuss later in this post.

coffee on OMAD

What are the benefits of eating one meal a day?

Weight loss

It’s been widely reported that intermittent fasting is an effective method for weight loss. And it makes sense. You lose weight by creating a calorie deficit, e.g. calories burned to exceed calories consumed.

It’s unlikely that you’ll be able to eat a full day worth of meals in just one sitting; therefore you’ll naturally be consuming fewer calories than you usually would—giving you a better chance to achieve a deficit.

I’ve written about the challenge of being an overweight vegan, and I’d be lying if I wasn’t curious to see if the OMAD diet would have any impact on my weight.

At the time of publishing this article, I’ve participated in OMAD for 28 days. And in that time I’ve lost 4.3kgs (9.4lbs). It’s not groundbreaking, but it is encouraging considering I haven’t been eating like an angel (more on that later).

Save money

What does it cost you to eat breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks every day? Now reduce that cost by roughly 70%, and that’s how much you’ll be saving by eating one meal a day.

Eating all day is expensive, and it becomes apparent when you see the results in your bank account. You buy fewer ingredients and eat out less. This is an underrated benefit of the OMAD diet.

What does it cost you to eat breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks every day? Now reduce that cost by roughly 70%, and that’s how much you’ll be saving by eating one meal a day. Click To Tweet

Save time

Another excellent benefit of OMAD is the time you save, not thinking about food. Now in the first three days, all I could think about was food. But once I got past that, it felt like I freed up a few extra hours each day to get on with life.

Just thinking about how much time is spent planning, preparing, travelling to consume food each day. It blows my mind how much time food takes up in our lives.

I know Maša was sometimes envious of me in situations where she’d be scratching her head about what to eat for dinner, and I was off doing my own thing.

Discipline

If you’re interested in challenging your willpower and improving your self-discipline, eating one meal a day will provide for some good practice.

I love testing my comfort zone, and this last month has made me uncomfortable at times. But like all painful situations, when you overcome it, it improves your self-confidence and mental toughness.

One Meal A Day

What are the challenges of eating one meal a day?

Getting through the first three days

As I mentioned above, getting through the first couple of days on the OMAD diet was hard for me. I experienced intense hunger pains and loss of energy in the evenings (I was crashing at 8:30 pm, which was unusually early for me).

But once I got over that three-day hump, my body started to adjust as I settled into a new routine.

Navigating social situations

I loved challenging myself to bring a positive attitude in social environments where I wasn’t eating due to my OMAD commitment.

However, I did feel that friends and family felt uncomfortable at times because I wasn’t participating in a shared meal.

I remember on Maša’s birthday, we went out to dinner with her family, and I happily sipped on water for a couple of hours while the gang ploughed through a three-course meal.

But for the most part, people are understanding, and it often becomes a point of conversation. Furthermore, I’ve been vegan for five years, so people in my life have lots of practice with me doing different things at the dinner table.

Getting enough nutrients

With one meal a day, there’s less opportunity to ensure you get enough nutrients.

Also, I’ve read that people eating an OMAD diet can feel entitled, or deserving of food once they get to their eating session. This kind of mentality can lead to overeating or binge eating unhealthy food.

I can certainly relate to this feeling of entitlement. My internal dialogue would say things like, “I’ve waited 24 hours for this meal, I should be able to eat what I want”. It’s easy to get caught in this mindset as your meal becomes an event.

If you’re not careful, you may end up overeating junk food, and thus creating a calorie surplus.

Is eating one meal a day sustainable?

After eating OMAD for a month, I easily feel like it can become part of my lifestyle—or at least something that I do on and off for the rest of my life.

I love the benefits of saving time and money while keeping my weight down. But if I decide to keep it going I’d make a few tweaks;

  1. Remove tea and coffee entirely in fasting hours, and stick to water.
  2. Drink one cold-pressed juice to start my meal, followed by a large buddha bowl for a variety of nutrients. Also, juices and bowls have many variations, so I can keep things interesting.
  3. I would consider tracking my calories to see the quality and diversity of nutrients I’m consuming.

Japanese Inspired Bowl

Now I can confidently make claims to these adjustments because I’ve already established a habit of eating one meal a day. The hard part is done. It’s now time to refine and optimise for better health and performance.

Anyway, that’s my experience of eating one meal a day. I’m keen to explore this lifestyle in more detail and greater commitment to healthier foods.

My OMAD update

As I write this update, I continued eating one meal a day for three months in total. The last time I checked my weight, I had lost 8 kgs (17.6 pounds). 

I addition to OMAD, I was consistent in exercising at home for 7 minutes a day, using this app. I felt incredible with these two new habits, and my body was transforming. But with demanding work commitments, I, unfortunately, got unwell, which forced me to break my streak.

I’m an all or nothing type of person, so I tend to beat myself up when I break promises to myself. I pushed through with OMAD but had a cheat day here and there.

I continue to follow OMAD today. However, I do have days where I might snack on some food in the evenings, or eat out occasionally with my wife. 

I haven’t recorded my weight since my last weigh-in, but I feel and look the same. More importantly, I’m not so hard on myself, and I still eat far fewer calories than I was before I started eating one meal a day.

Have you tried OMAD before? What was your experience like? Let me know in the comments below.

What I Learned From Eating One Meal a Day For 28 Days

Other posts you might find interesting:

  1. The Pressure of Being An Overweight Vegan
  2. Minimalist Health: A Walk in the Park
  3. How To Make More Time For Yourself When You Have a Busy Schedule
  4. A Step-By-Step System To Consistently Get 8 Hours Sleep And Feel Amazing Every Day
  5. The Ideal Day Checklist: How Many of These 10 Things Are You Actually Doing?

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  • Charity 02/05/2019 Reply

    This is so inspiring and candid. Thank you for sharing your experience. I recently switched from three meals to two meals, and I have been wondering about dropping down to one… Your experience has given me the courage to try it. I’m going to try it for May, starting today. Thank you!

    • Hi Charity, I’m glad this post has inspired you to take it a step further and go down to one meal. I’d be interested to see how you feel after doing it for a month. Good luck!

  • Kelsey 03/05/2019 Reply

    Wow interesting, I’d not heard of this before and after reading this I’ve seen it pop up more. I think it’s an interesting concept, one I may apply to myself in future. I am an overweight vegan because lotus spread is life haha, jk I’ve just always been overweight. In all seriousness though I think I will drop a meal and then maybe move onto this after a few weeks to see if it works for me! I’d love an update when and if you have more to share. Thanks 🙂

    • Love it, Kelsey! Experimentation is the only way to know how your body will respond. Sure thing. I’ll see if I have more to share after another decent period of time 🙂

  • Nicola 06/05/2019 Reply

    I started yesterday and I have done different IF over a few months. I started doing the 5:2 for a while mid-last year or something and recently I have tried the 20:4 but I found that makes me really hungry, and I do an OMAD day every so often. Now that I know I can do it pretty well I’m planning to do it for 15 days, as I am a young female women and we are advised to be very careful with IF we are usually told to stick with the 5:2 or 16:8 but I’m going to see how my body responds for me. When I did the 5 days it actually made me feel a whole lot better hormonal which is the usual concern so I’m just going to try 15 days and if I can do it with no negative health impacts that’s great, if not then I’ll just stick to short amounts of time that my body can do safely. Great post I enjoyed reading it. 🙂

    • Hi Nicola, so glad you enjoyed reading my post. It sounds like you’ve done quite a bit of experimenting yourself! You’re so right. You got to listen to your body and see how it responds to different types of IF. Let us know how you got with the 15 days.

  • Tracy Crawford 30/05/2019 Reply

    Hi, Michael. I’m a 47 year old, mostly raw vegan and about 50 lbs overweight. My caloric requirement is around 2200 calories by the older, conventional models. Problem is that 2200 cals is ALOT of food to consume on OMAD. Would you share my opinion that I should simply pack in as many nutrient dense calories as comfortably possible and worry about totals later? My concept is that my body will tell me if I’m lacking as I go along. I may be wrong but my belief is that 1000 raw, plant based calories are equivalent to 2000 meat and oil inclusive calories. Am I close here?
    Thanks so much,
    Tracy

    • Hi Tracy, kudos to you for eating mostly raw. Very impressive!
      I’ve wondered the same thing about cramming required daily calories into OMAD—but ultimately, I decided to throw tracking out the door and respond to how my body is feeling. I’ve found that eating your caloric intake is incredibly hard to achieve and in a one-hour sitting, so I don’t force it. This is a personal decision and perhaps a plant-based nutritionist would have other ideas?

    • Bjork tagneros 01/07/2019 Reply

      A calorie is a calorie, doesnt matter what it comes from. So eating 1000 calories of one thing can not equal 2000. Calories is measure of energy.

  • Chris H. 12/06/2019 Reply

    Hey Michael, great article! I’ve been doing OMAD for a little over a year now – down 80 pounds with about 40 left to go. In my experience, it’s the easiest method of weight control for all the reasons you set out in your article: naturally less caloric intake, less insulin spikes throughout the day, and puts the body into a background “can’t rest, time to find food” mode that paradoxically increases energy. At this point it’s the natural rhythm for my body and (aside from the social aspects you mentioned) an easy routine to stick to.

    I personally start my day with black coffee because it’s my vice! And I drink about a gallon of water throughout the day to stay hydrated. Will note here that with reduced water consumption through food it’s important to stay hydrated but also not to go too overboard because also reduced electrolytes and don’t want to induce hyponutremia. My meal is around 6 PM. I am not vegan, but try to incorporate 8 different fruits and vegetables into every meal as a guide, then a light animal protein of some sort to balance macro and micro nutrients.

    Again, great article and best of luck!

    • Hi Chris, your story is so inspiring, and I was hoping to find examples like yours to feed off!
      It’s incredible that you’ve made it past 12 months on OMAD. But now that I’m over two months in, it kind of feels like I could easily keep it going.
      I also love your simple meal goals of 8 different fruits and vegetables. Thanks for sharing, I’m sure readers, like myself, will find your experience helpful.

  • Dora G. 19/06/2019 Reply

    Wow! What an interesting article! Thanks for this, I am seriously looking into OMAD as I am 2 years vegan and hoping to lose some weight. One questions is I’m searching for the one perfect vitamin and nutrient meal for the day as a vegan…. any suggestions? Also did you take any supplements in the 29 days ?
    Thanks, you are a true inspiration ?

    • Hi Dora, I’m glad you found this post interesting! I’m not sure I’ve found the one perfectly balanced meal for OMAD, but as I mentioned in the post, it’s hard to beat the combination of a green juice and a huge Buddha bowl to pack in your nutrients. I’m historically bad at remembering to take supplements, so no. Now and then my wife will remind me to take B12, but that rarely happens.

  • Anna 21/06/2019 Reply

    so inspiring and great to read, i have started OMAD diet 7 days ago am into my 8th day today, my struggle is cutting off sugar and carbs and it is a bit challenging but am keeping focused and i want to make it a life style and have one day a month or so to go out with family and friends and eat with them a healthy meal that way friends will be comfortable and happy,
    i have a question i feel like in the evening i eat one meal but unsure if it’s a big meal or normal meal as i try to eat for 15 mins max so i have natural yoghurt and lettuce cups filled with lean beef mince and veggies followed by a full tablespoon of crunchy almond butter and one piece of fruit mainly passionfruit and pistachios is that too much food?
    i can’t see any difference in my appearance as yet as i know things take a while to show up physically.

    • Hi Anna, I’m so glad that you found my story inspiring.

      Wow, well done for making it past one week on OMAD! I also love the idea of having one day each month when you go out with friends and family.

      It’s hard to say what is enough food based on your body’s needs. If you’re unsure, I’d recommend tracking your calories in an app like chronometer.

      Regarding progress, I’ve been OMAD for nearly three months now, and my weight loss has been VERY gradual. I do eat quite a bit more food than you, but I assume I’m also a different build.

      Just stick with it, and limit yourself to checking your weight monthly. This is at least what worked for me.

  • Steve 27/06/2019 Reply

    For me the best way to lose weight is OMAD every other day with nothing in between (like 47:1 fasting). It is very easy to lose weight this way and it lets you be insanely focused. This should also be combined with 4-5 hours of sleep every day for maximum effect, the 4-5 hours ensures that you have more time in the day.

    • Wow, Steve, I can’t say I’ve heard of this before. It sounds intense, and I have no doubt it would be an effective way to lose weight and free up time. I just don’t know how sustainable that would be for me. Thanks for sharing.

  • Diana 14/07/2019 Reply

    i enjoyed reading this article, so interesting! As for me, I did the 16:8 diet for about 2-3 months and it was hard in the beginning because i was always home and wanted to eat. However, now that I have a job, I only eat once per day and I already lost 2 lbs in just one week! which is crazy because i could not lose weight when i was doing the 16:8 diet. But I have to say that I do get really tired and just like you said I want to sleep at 8:30, which is very very surprising for me. Thank you for sharing your experience!

    • Hi Diana, thank you for sharing your experience with us. What a difference it made dropping one meal. I’ve now been on OMAD for over three months, and I’m no longer feel tired. It’s amazing how your body adapts.

  • Brendz 21/07/2019 Reply

    Hello Michael,

    I felt inspired after reading your article. I think I will try OMAD very soon. I have been doing 16:8 for 2 months now with very minimal results because I have done it the wrong way. I use the 16:8 as a spring board to OMAD. I am so excited.

    Thank you very much for sharing your experience and more power to you.

    Sincerely,

    Brendz

    • Hi Brendz!
      You’re pretty much there coming from 16:8.
      Keep listening to your body, and I’m sure you will get the results you’re after.
      Thanks for sharing!
      Michael

  • Essence 25/07/2019 Reply

    I love this article. I have wanted to try OMAD for so long but I felt that the info online was gimmicky or varied too much. Your experience was realistic and honest. Thank you so much. I waiver between vegan and vegetarian…one day I’ll get it right 🙂 Looking forward to trying OMAD now 🙂

    • I’m glad you found this article to be honest and realistic! Hope you feel good after trying OMAD 🙂

  • Dom 29/07/2019 Reply

    Thank you for this! I was looking for a personal perspective after hearing about OMAD and yours was by far the most helpful.
    I’ve been doing 16:8 for about six months and have even had a few days with just one meal. I’m also not eating carbs for the most part. I’ve lost about 50 pounds so I’m a big fan of intermittent fasting but I still feel pretty hungry in the mornings and at night if I’m up late. I can tolerate it and it’s only really bad if I’ve cheated and had carbs or sugar recently.
    I’m most interested in seeing how cutting down to one meal a day affects my hunger pangs and what it’s like long term.

  • Gwen McCauley 01/08/2019 Reply

    I’m a happy, fat, diabetic, old carnivore! This is a good article. Thanks. I’ve been eating One Meal a Day for about 3 weeks now and so far I’m loving it. I’d been having considerable trouble keeping my blood sugar levels within recommended thresholds (always too high). The many small meals a day recommended by all the diabetes organizations wasn’t working, despite doubling my meds. So I tried a keto approach for a couple of weeks and my sugar went down immediately. But I didn’t like keto. I’m kind of skeptical of any approach to eating that cuts out huge categories of food types. Then I met a guy who had lost 100 lbs on OMAD and gone from being Type 2 Diabetic to ‘normal’. It was enough to cause me to give it a whirl. And I’m loving it. And my body is loving it. My blood sugar is consistently in range (I never seem to have trouble with low blood sugar ratings; always when they’re off they’re too high). I was concerned about that because the popular wisdom is that regular small meals is the way to manage blood sugar.

    So far I haven’t seen any dramatic weight loss but I’m not someone who has access to a set of scales. But even if I lose no weight I’m a very happy old gal!! I love how the conversation inside my head about food has shifted. On keto and in general it was a deprivation conversation. “Gee, I’d love to have some of that but I can’t because I have to keep my blood sugar in line.” Now it’s “OK, you want that? Great. Just wait x hours and you can not only have it but have as much as you want of it.” Often by the time my meal time comes around that urge has moved on, btw. So far the only real challenge I’m having is ensuring that I get enough fruits and vegetables in in one hour. One trick I’m using is that if I’m especially low, I make up a shake with 3-4 servings of fruit in it and have that as my dessert. I make a small pot of French Press coffee each morning and have my couple of cups of that and the rest of the time it’s water and water flavoured by letting herbal tea bags sit in it for 30 min. I seldom feel hungry. And when I do that “It’s OK. Just X hours til you can eat what you want” conversation kicks in and I relax into it.
    I’m about to have my regular round of bloodwork done so it’ll be interesting to see if my cholesterol is up. I’m medicated for that at the moment so that’ll be an interesting variable. And it’ll be a test of my doctor/patient relationship when we have the conversation about my eating choices. He’s a fairly new family doc I have so I’m not sure how open to innovative thinking he is.
    Overall, though, it sure seems to be working for me. I feel good. I love my meals. I appreciate the shift in my thought patterns. And I’m over the moon that my blood sugar levels finally seem to be in range on a long term basis!

    Not bad for a 71 year old, meat eating, food loving, fat (and hopefully soon to be non-diabetic) gal!

  • Trenton 08/08/2019 Reply

    I see some say the best time is to eat in the evenings. How long of a window should you wait to go to sleep? Always heard eating and than going to sleep is not good. Thanks !

  • AK 16/08/2019 Reply

    I’m considered skinny fat and have bad allergies to dairy proteins and gluten. And I don’t eat citrus (lemon, apple, oranges) because it weakens teeth/gums. Don’t have diabetes or sugar issues, but do get the shakes after having carbs at breakfast or lunch, but not dinner. I recently OMAD only on weekdays at 6-7 pm. On weekends I eat light breakfast, lunch, dinner with the family. I like OMAD a lot. I feel it’s not about losing weight, but getting back to our biological shape. I don’t think humans were meant to be shaped like a tea-pot or wooden spoon.

    Takes about 3 consecutive days of OMAD with to go keto. My body started toning up without exercise. I was afraid to add any kind of exercise. After the 3 days, no heavy breathing, increased focus, energy, reflexes & memory. Have a lot less anxiety, less grumpy or tired after work. I don’t mind fixing/cleaning stuff around in/around the house. Like to play with my kid. Eye’s feel healthier, more clean/white and less sensitive to bright light. Feel lighter. Don’t have motion sickness anymore (can eat food in plane & boats). No bloated feeling. If I do consume some dairy/gluten, don’t have as bad of a reaction, which then heals a lot quicker. I have a physical job, heavy lifting with 8 miles of walking. OMAD still works. Have lots of focus and energy.
    2 or 3 vegan meals per day messed up my thyroid, felt like I swallowed a marble. With Vegan OMAD, I don’t seem to have that issue. I think vegan meals are too potent for 2+ meals.

    • Hi Ak, thank you for sharing your OMAD experience with us. It looks like you’ve found a right balance with weekdays and weekend splits. I agree that OMAD is getting back to our biological shape. Eating multiple meals seems excessive when you think about it.

  • Rachel Jones 17/08/2019 Reply

    I was wondering about the 1 meal a day diet I’ve been on it before and lost over 100 lbs I just can’t remember what I ate if I can remember I ate anything I wanted on it and I ate it about lunch time

    • Hi Rachel. Perhaps if you do OMAD again, you could keep a food journal. With such strong results, I’m sure others would be curious about your process.

  • Deepali 19/08/2019 Reply

    Today is my third day , I was actually loosing ny mind as I didn’t loose a single gram of weight. But after reading this I have decided to test my will power . Hope this works for me

  • Toni 20/08/2019 Reply

    I have been doing the OMAD diet since 7/5/2019, and have lost 11 pounds so far. I am menopausal and all I was doing was gaining weight. I got up to 190 and my mom told me to try eating one meal a day. When she told me about it I thought it was impossible. I have tried everything under the sun and couldn’t loose weight, so I thought I would give it a try. I love it. I’m loosing weight, I stopped taking my hormone pill, I still have energy, No hot flashes, night sweats, brain fog, mood swings etc…. I am elated…..I know this sounds unbelievable, and it is, but true. I have done my research about the OMAD diet and it’s really legit, and I feel great. I eat one meal a day, and I eat whatever I want to eat. I use to think I could just eat how ever much I wanted to eat, but that’s not so, because I get full quick, and if I do overeat I am miserable as ever. Which is a good thing because my stomach has shrunk. After reading this blog I’m going to start watching what I eat now. I drink coffee, but I can’t drink it black, so I still add heavy whipping cream and equal. I drink so much water, but I add a little cranberry juice to that for a little flavor. Does anybody have any suggestions for my coffee and water. The only added sugar I use is the equal , and I eat between 6-7 on the weekdays, since I don’t get home from work until then, and 4-6 on weekends. Thank you for sharing your experience.

    • Hi Toni, your story is inspiring. Thank you for sharing it with us! I still haven’t cracked the code on coffee. I’ve had varying success with herbal teas, but it’s just not the same.

  • Joshua Howard 25/08/2019 Reply

    Hi! Thank for sharing your experience! I’ve heard a lot about this diet but haven’t tried it. But your results are really great!

    • Glad you enjoyed the post, Joshua! I just added an updated towards the end of the article if you’re interested 🙂

  • Kim 26/08/2019 Reply

    What a fantastic article! Thank you for the inspiration! I’ve been working towards OMAD all summer. I’ve been consistent for about a month. Over this summer I’ve lost 25lbs. I try to eat whole nutrient dense foods when I eat at around 6 pm -7 pm. I also take a multivitamin to be sure I’m getting the vitamins I need. I haven’t cut out my coffee with half and half though. I also drink a slash Simply Light lemonade with mostly water to stay hydrated throughout the day. I’ve found I have more energy eating this way. It’s also easier to just make one meal a day and shop. Tonight I had sardines, cottage cheese, a whole tomato from the garden and a nectarine. I feel full and ready for tomorrow. I make sure I sleep 9 hours a night and I’ve cut out drinking any alcohol. Tomorrow I’m starting strength training. A half hour a day, three days a week. In the fall, when it cools down, I’ll resume my walking routine (2 miles, 5 days a week). I also have mostly stopped dinning out. My brother was in town a couple weeks ago so we went out for fish tacos (grilled fish). I thought that was pretty healthy. A friend came to town for a visit last week. We usually go out for Indian food once a week. I just explained that I’m only eating one meal a day and she was kind enough to bring over some guava and dragon fruit for me to eat at dinner. She was very supportive. I want to loose 40 more pounds by my 50th birthday in May. That would make me very thin, but still healthy. I’ve been thin most my life and it feels good. I’ll let you know how it goes. ~Cheers!!!

    • Wow, Kim! What incredible results! But it’s not surprising as you are very committed to the OMAD lifestyle. Yes, please come back and give us an update on your progress leading up to your 50th birthday. Well done.

  • eric 30/08/2019 Reply

    thanks for sharing your omad experience. Although i have been eating with one principal meal a day for d last 25 yrs, Now im trying to improve it. Im keeping my eating-window at 3-5am, and eat a fruit or some salad during d day. so its no longer strict omad.

    • 25 yrs! It’s nice to see an example of longevity with OMAD. Thanks for sharing your experience with us, Eric.

  • eric 30/08/2019 Reply

    im not a vegan. i eat almost everything edible. lately im checking which should be the best omad eating-window.

    • It might be worth tweaking to see if plant-based feels good. The eating window is very personal, based on your lifestyle. Let us know how you go.

  • Megan 04/09/2019 Reply

    So, I think I’m a bit like you ‘100% in or 100% out. A friend had just started IF and I saw great results in him. I’m overweight and I needed to make many changes , especially with mindset. I have taken on the OMAD and I’m eating a Keto diet (so only carbs in low starch veggies and zero fruit). Everything is better. I’m at Day 12 and my sleep has improved so much. Head hits the pillow and I’m asleep, my mood is way happier, I can actually think clearly!! I have more energy. I have lost 4.4kg in 12 days. So that’s like 10pound or something. I was between 170/180 pounds to begin with (76kg) – I only know the metric system 🙂 I am at the gym every day but it’s not high intensity. I eat my meal at night at 7.30pm. I’m excited to see where this leads.

    • Hi Megan! Congrats on making it to day 12 on Keto OMAD. Very impressive. It sounds like you have a solid foundation in place, so I’m sure you’ll go far with it. Just go easy on yourself if you break the chain. You’ve got this! Thanks for sharing your experience with us.

  • Marlon 04/09/2019 Reply

    Hi Michael. Thank you so much for sharing! I started this diet about 2 weeks ago – mainly because i am trying to reverse the symptoms i have as pre-diabetic. I have actually been noticing better blood glucose levels since I started this OMAD diet. When I am hungry i add a pinch of pink salt+cream of tartar (5:1 ratio) to my liquids (cold tea/water/cold coffee) which helps a lot.
    I eat my meal between 12-2pm like yourself and 1 have one cheating day where I eat two meals.
    I am a bit worried about the lack of vitamins (when i eat one meal i day, i try to add one fruit, but sometimes i am just too full after eating). Should I get vitamin pills? Furthermore , I am not sure if working out ealy morning is ok when only having my first meal so many hours later … What’s your take on that?

    • Hi Marlon, that’s so fantastic to hear that you see better blood glucose levels since starting OMAD!
      I understand your dilemma, as it feels like quite a bit of pressure to give your body everything it needs in one meal. Nutrition is not my area of expertise, so I wouldn’t feel comfortable giving you advice. For me personally, I listen to my body. If I wanted to take it further, I would get regular blood test results to measure movement in nutrient levels, and adjust accordingly.

  • David Jones 06/09/2019 Reply

    Interesting post.

    I stumbled onto OMAD after doing it for a week. Have been trying to lose weight for a few years. Tried calorie counting. Worked but made me miserable and snappy. Tried alternate day fasting which also worked but I wasn’t good for much by the end of a fast day. Also overate on feast days. Put all the weight from calorie counting back on. Put about half the fasting weight back, so some of that stuck.

    It occured to me that I could try one meal a day and then after a couple of days I looked it up and it is a thing. Two weeks in and tbh I am loving it.

    Hands down the easiest diet I have tried. I eat at 3pm. Couple of pieces of fruit to start, then soup (with veg!), couple rounds of sandwiches (with veg!), then whatever else I fancy, which is usually very little because by then I am pretty full. Not hungry at all in the evening, in the morning you are only a few hours from eating again!

    Unlike alternate day fasting I never have a whole day to get through. However, alternate day fasting did teach me some useful tips which are making this easier I think.

    1. Drink lots and drink before you get hungry. Like, a pint at a time. Drink early and drink often. You are probably just thirsty if you feel hungry. Sugar free cordial is great for this. Mix up the flavours or you’ll get bored and then you’ll drink less.

    2. Hunger goes away. If you really are hungry, find something to do for 5 mins. You’ll find it goes away.

    3. Fruit and veg in every meal. Ideally the biggest part. You can go a week without meat, junk. Go a week without fruit/veg and you’ll feel terrible. Take vitamin/mineral supplements.

    4. Get busy. Nothing breeds hunger like boredom.

    Hoping this is the diet that works out long term! Funny thing is that I’m making such an effort to ensure I am eating fruit and veg in that one meal a day, I’ve almost given up meat by accident.

    • David, what a valuable share! You’ve got your OMAD system on lock. And it’s really cool that you’re naturally pulled to add more vegetables to your diet. Keep kicking goals and check back in with us later with an update 🙂

  • Lee J 11/09/2019 Reply

    I have been on this particular regiment since late March and since then I have lost a total of 48 lbs. I eat breakfast around 6:30 am. I do cheat probably once a week to eat dinner with my wife but the rest of the week she eats alone and does so with discretion as to not tempt me. The 1st 3 weeks were terrible and it was a taper process but on the 4th week I finally achieved the one meal a day goal. My body is still angry on some days and I get some pretty harsh headaches. When this happens I down about 32oz of water or Lemon water and the ache slowly backs down. It is very important to also make sure you’re supplementing with essential vitamins your body needs since you no longer have the intake from the daily food you once were eating. It took me a several weeks to realize that lack of vitamins and nutrients were causing more harsh side effects than I would’ve liked. A quick trip to the vitamin hut and that was that. The human body is an amazing machine that can adapt and conform to its current circumstances. I encourage anyone who has a weight issue or a health issue to give this a try. The body will go into a state of rebuilding and healing while this regiment is being utilized.
    Good luck and stay strong.

    • Wow, what fantastic results! Your honest experience with OMAD has been really insightful. Yes, I’ll have to do a much better job with vitamins. We have lots in the house, so there’s no excuse. You should be proud!

  • Ka't Mandu 17/09/2019 Reply

    I am back on OMAD after trying it a year ago, but like yourself, was having tea and coffee with milk during the day. I switched to decaf about 6 months ago and have eliminated dairy, so now all I have during the day is green tea and water. My dinner has been 2 small baked potatoes with avocado, sauerkraut and corn, a small tub of rice with a mashed banana and some sugarless blueberry jam and a punnet of strawberries or other fruit all up around 1000 cals. Too early to say if I’ve lost weight but I feel great. I’m also taking vitamins C,D,Iron,Collagen,Magnesium, probiotics and a multivitamin. 🙂

    • Thanks for sharing your experiences with us. I love the tweak to move towards Green Tea. I think I’ll do the same 🙂 It also looks like you’ve found nutritional balance with your meal and vitamins. How you feel is a much better measure than how much weight you’ve lost. Keep up the great work!

  • Tarek Amer 25/09/2019 Reply

    I’ve been doing omad for 5 months now.. It was a tat easier for me since I did it in after ramadan where I was used to not drinking and eating at all.. But I’ve first really started after… But I can say I’ve had days where I fallen in and I succumbed to the mindset that is I can eat whatever witch is a big mistake. But even tho I’ve failed alot of times on som days I always made sure to get back up on the horse again the day after. I’ve lost around 16 kilos during the last 4 5 months.

    • Amazing results Tarek, but more importantly, you’re able to bounce back time and time again, which I admire. Thank you for sharing your OMAD experience with us.

  • Sharon hope 26/09/2019 Reply

    That’s a good article I could say I started OMAD 1 week and I within this one week I am experiencing a lot of change on my weight. Thanks for the article

  • tee gardoen 04/10/2019 Reply

    Thank you so much. Its such an inspiring and well written article.
    I am 60 and am trying to lose, ( pl don’t ask ), X amount of lipids as it were accumulated over the years.
    I have reached the point where it has become a necessity to shed those lbs, as weight related health issues have started to appear in my life. Btw, my doctor has heartily endorsed my going on a OMAD routine.
    Thank You Mike, for a Brilliant article, and Best Regards!

    • Aw, thank you so much! It sounds like you have a great plan in place, and it’s reassuring that your doctor supports OMAD. All the best with your journey ahead. You’ve got this!

  • Denise Ridlon 07/10/2019 Reply

    One thing I would have liked to see in your article (and have had trouble finding on the internet), is WHAT to eat for this ONE meal. I am Having a tough time trying to figure out how to get all necessary nutrients to fit into this one meal. Some examples of what you ate would’ve been nice.

    • Hi Denise, thank you for your feedback. I’ll keep it in mind for future updates. I did mention a combination of buddha bowl as a nutrient-dense meal with a link to our recipe if that helps? All the best.

  • Eric 09/10/2019 Reply

    Loved the article! Thanks for sharing that. I’m curious as to what your average calories per day was. Were you getting close to 2,000-2500? Seems like a lot of calories for one meal but I’m really interested in trying this. Thanks again for sharing!

    • Hi Eric, I’m glad you enjoyed the article. While I love the idea of counting calories, I’m not committed to tracking them. So I’m not sure how many calories I was consuming on OMAD. I can see how it would be wise to track calories at least initially to see how your body responds to one meal a day. Good luck!

  • Renuka 26/10/2019 Reply

    Hi….loved reading your article! More information than most other stuff out there. And always nice to read a first hand account.
    One question though – how much weight did you lose? And did you have any medical ailments that were reversed / Fixed post your OMAD experiment?

    • Hi Renuka! Thank you for your kind words. I tried to lay it all out there based on my experience. Information about my weight loss from OMAD is all documented in the post. I lost 4 kgs in the first month and over 8kgs to date. I’m grateful not to have any medical ailments. All the best!

  • Dan 29/10/2019 Reply

    Good write up! I’m on Day 3 of my OMAD enterprise and feeling pretty good. I’ve been intermittent fasting, mostly 16/8, for about 2.5 years now, and also eat a *mostly* vegan diet already, so OMAD is not completely foreign to me or my body. After researching the hunger and satiety hormones ghrelin and leptin and how they behave (e.g. ghrelin will rise as I feel hungry but will eventually fall back down if I persevere through it) I decided to give it a try. I have lost 7 pounds in 2 days already, though losing weight is not my main objective. I feel like my body might perform more efficiently with only 1 meal a day and I’ve read that the body will process nutrients better resulting in less calories needed, as well as increase life span, and a longer duration for optimal autophagy to occur. Anyway, thanks for the post, it was insightful to read someone else’s experience with OMAD.

    • Hi Dan! It’s so exciting to hear about your experience transitioning from 16/8 to OMAD. You’ve done your research, and I’m sure you’ll continue feeling the benefits of intermittent fasting. Thanks for sharing with us.

  • Ipy 31/10/2019 Reply

    This is amazing. About 3 weeks ago I saw the same video you saw of the black guy in the woods doing OMAD for anti aging. He was inspirational. I’m trying to text as slow as he was talking! Haha. I’m African American, overweight, and HBP & Diabetes runs in my family. Sadly, so does Alzheimer’s. A week ago I was 262lbs. I have been doing OMAD for one week and one day, thus far (just finishing up today’s meal now 3:30pm). I try to eat after 2:00 pm and before 7:00 pm. One of the things I noticed in that anti aging video is that he said ONE MEAL A DAY, but added that in mornings and evening he and his wife have small snacks (Dessert), I think it was grains/nuts and some other collaboration. So I’m doing a low carb version of OMAD (while also reducing red meat during the week), but will grab a handful of Walnuts, black berries and 1/4 Dill Pickle slice, once during the day with have a cup of Almond Milk. I call that my dessert. Psychologically it makes OMAD easier. I call my version OMAD+ (OMAD Plus). I felt I need to getting some fruit and nuts in my diet was mandatory, even if my carb count is slightly higher. So here is the good news. After One week, yesterday I weighed in at 254 lbs. I lost 8 lbs last week! I’m extremely encouraged and after one week have so much more energy, as well as mental clarity. Reading your post was inspirational; it makes me feel I can go all the way! My big vice is diet coke/soda. I’m limiting myself to one a day with my meal, but make sure I’m drinking water throughout the day. Moments ago, I had a Diet Coke and it didn’t taste as good as normal. Hopefully, like you with Coffee, I can get off it altogether. That is a goal of mine. By July 1st 2020, I want to be 185 lbs. That’s a loss of 77 lbs. In 40 weeks…then by Sept 1 2020, I want to be 175 lbs. I was looking for a supportive OMAD post and I am glad I found you, brother! Keep pushing me! Next Tuesday I will add “The Gym” for resistance work and I will walk until down to 205 lbs. before I start jogging (gotta watch the weight on the knees).
    Peace and Take care!
    –Ip

    • Hey! A fantastic effort at the beginning of your journey. You’re also inspiring me 🙂 I love the idea of OMAD+ as it promotes sustainability of OMAD. You’ve got this 💪🏿

  • lubi 01/11/2019 Reply

    Hello to everyone who are interested in the topic. I am practicing eating once a day for more than 30 years and from my personal experience this is the lifestyle that fit perfectly for my personality. I am active, 53 years old woman who travel a lot through many cultures so being super picky about what to eat is not the option. I eat real food instead of fast food and this is the only food restriction I have . Bread, pasta , rice are not prohibited.Eating once a day gives you a freedom to eat whatever your body is asking for. My eating time is in the evening. During the day I will drink coffee with a little sweet creamer . My weight and health is stable for more than 30 years and intake of pills equals to zero. I was eating once a day my entire adult life and do not plan to change it.This lifestyle saving your time and money . Guys, you are on the right track if you are thinking to change your eating habits to get healthier and happier 🙂 Good luck to all!

    • Wow, thank you so much for sharing your OMAD experience with us! It is truly valuable to see an example like this where you’ve been doing it for so long. I hope everyone who visits this post, will feel as inspired as I am from your story.

  • Ema 03/11/2019 Reply

    Unless you do low-carb, OMAD will make you feel very, very hungry and lethargic. OMAD works best for people who can go from using glucose for energy to using fat for energy with no problems. But if your glycogen stores are already high …I wouldn’t recommend it. I tried both higher and lower-carb diets on and fasting, and the difference between the two approaches is pretty big.

    • Hi Ema, thank you for sharing your insights about high-carb versus low-carb eating on OMAD. I’ll be sure to do some testing as well 🙂

  • Betty Muchembi 03/11/2019 Reply

    I started this OMAD thing the last two weeks and its shown me wonders already,I did not even imagine,though ive not checked on my weight yet but everyone seema amazed about this.I want to take it for about 2months then watch out.I only do a small amount of food including some proteins,vitamins,thats fruits and alittles starch,but its really working and i believe it.My weight has really dropped.

    • Fantastic news, Betty! Even just a bit of encouragement can go a long way to staying consistent on OMAD. All the best!

  • Lucy Garcia 07/11/2019 Reply

    Hi, Michael,
    Thank you for this entire blog. Your grace and spirit of experiment infuse the entire blog with positivity! I agree with you that listening to your body (and occasionally your loved ones) is the best way to judge results.
    I’m 68, and overweight but so far not unhealthily so. But I want to be more confident physically to take my grands to the forests and mountains. Plus I want to get a handle on the stress eating that just makes me exasperated with myself. So I started OMAD yesterday. I loved the post that says that any food you like the looks of, well, it’s on the menu in x hours no problem! Just my experience. Also the point that several posts made that hunger often just goes away, and that it’s best to keep busy.
    I’ve gone months and even years without putting sugar in my tea or coffee and gone back to sugar/milk and back off again. When I get off, I experience the slight bitterness of the drink as a “clean dose of reality.” (Then again who needs more bitter reality? Still it works for me.)
    I started just yesterday because my son has sent me videos about this. So, since I agree with him on so little else, (eyeroll) I decided to make this a link.

    Please, everyone: I’m sure I’m not the only one who would love to see updates, however mixed they may be. Let’s keep this conversation going…I’m eating it up!

    • What a lovely comment, Lucy! I can feel your great energy through your words 🙂 I’m so excited for you to give OMAD a go. With your attitude, I’m sure you will feel better as a result. Have a lovely weekend.

  • Gaby 09/11/2019 Reply

    I never heard this diet and I’m gonna try.I don’t want junk food or bread .I got burned with low carb and couldn’t stick to keto.My weights been up and down my whole life and I’m tired .I want try this and not resort to surgeries or drugs I can do it if could .Thank you very inspiring .

    • You’re welcome, Gaby 🙂 It sounds like you have a very good mindset for long-lasting health. Try OMAD out for a few days and see how your body responds. All the best!

  • RosAnn Biondo 09/11/2019 Reply

    I hope to try this..that is about all I can do is hope.
    I have tried fasting and all sorts calorie counting and cannot lose the weight.
    Never had a problem with my weight til the last 10 yrs. Stress.
    Your post is inspirational and encouraging. Thank you.
    Will fill you in if I can really try this and have some results to show.

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