Mealtimes in Mexico explained

In Mexico there are three schedules: breakfast -depending on the area or region-, but it goes from six to ten in the morning; lunch from noon to three in the afternoon; and dinner goes from six to nine at night.

Mealtimes in Mexico explained
A glass of coffee with milk and Mexican burrito served on the black plate. Photo by Clint Bustrillos / Unsplash

Meal patterns also influenced Mexican cuisine. In Mexico it is customary to have three main meals a day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner, although this has been changing and now each family applies its own schedule, according to their work.

Meanwhile, anyone who visits Mexico soon discovers that Mexicans are fond of snacking. They do not seem to consume enough antojitos, or "little snacks," sold on the street. These snacks, which can be juicy sculpted mangoes skewered on sticks or heavy burritos, are eaten at different times of the day.

Antojitos, small creative dishes, offer good ideas for serving wonderful snacks and appetizers at home. However, antojitos are only a small part of what Mexicans eat. They usually start the day with coffee with milk and sweet bread. Often later in the morning, a more nutritious breakfast of eggs, tortillas, and beans is served.

At noon the main meal is served, i.e., the classic Mexican meal. A formal meal can comprise up to eight dishes, followed by a siesta. The day ends with dinner or a lighter meal. In some cities, this time is the main meal, rather than the midday meal.

Between lunch and dinner is the afternoon snack, or afternoon refreshment. It is easy to incorporate any Mexican dish into a foreign menu, regardless of the time it is served. Or you can prepare an authentic Mexican feast the next time you have a party.

How to divide the five meals a day?

Many experts recommend five meals a day instead of three, consisting of breakfast, a mid-morning snack, lunch, afternoon snack, and dinner, to form a balanced and varied diet, according to the Mediterranean diet.

The reasons, among other points, are that it reduces anxiety, you will be less hungry at the next meal, and then it can help us to lose weight, since the energy balance, by eating just enough and necessary and not too much due to anxiety, will end up being positive.

It is recommended to eat five meals a day instead of three because when food is eaten every 3-4 hours, instead of every 7-8 hours, the amount of food eaten tends to be more controlled, always respecting the night's rest.

Three main meals should be eaten: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Also, the intake of 2 snacks throughout the day, mid-morning and mid-afternoon, according to the schedules of each person and the physical activity that is usually performed.

If we have breakfast at 7.00 a.m. and do not have the next meal until 2.00 p.m., we will eat more food at the main midday meal than if we have had a snack at 11.00 a.m.

The caloric sum of the mid-morning and midday meal is generally lower than if we have had a mid-morning snack. The caloric sum of the mid-morning and midday intake is generally less than the midday intake when no mid-morning lunch has been taken.

Eating every 3-4 hours is never necessary and one must respect the biological rhythms of each person, which generally include a long period of overnight fasting.