To Your Health
September, 2022 (Vol. 16, Issue 09)
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Timing Is Everything

By Editorial Staff

When do you eat your first meal of the day? How long do you refrain from eating – from your last meal of the day until your first meal the next morning? The answers to these questions may help determine how effectively you lose weight, particularly if you're struggling to do so. Let's see why new research suggests timing is everything.

Early, time-restricted eating is the key to losing weight and improving other health variables. Researchers conducted a 14-week study involving obese adults who were randomized to one of two groups for comparison. The first group ate only from 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. every day, eating their first meal of the day early and fasting for 16 hours (3:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.); in other words, an eight-hour eating window with an early first meal. The second group ate within a 12-hour or longer window, with no specific time restriction as to when they could eat their first or last meal of the day. Participants were instructed to adhere to their eating schedule at least six days per week for the 14 weeks.

Members of the time-restricted eating group lost more weight (approximately 50 percent more) than the control group; and also reduced diastolic blood pressure and "mood disturbances" (particularly fatigue) compared to members of the control group. In other words, they lost more weight and felt better / had more energy!

This isn't the first time we've presented research suggesting intermittent fasting and /or eating early in the day (breakfast) have health benefits. If you're struggling with weight issues and want help, ask your doctor about these findings. They may be a springboard to outlining an effective, long-term weight-loss solution.