Want to Beat Obesity? It’s Not What You Eat but When You Eat It, Scientists Say

By Sharon Moore on September 12, 2017

Timing your meals can give you a great advantage when it comes to weight loss, a new study suggests. For the first time, researchers tested this theory in a real-world setting. They note that the most important factor is that you should not eat within a few hours before bed.

Waiting a few hours after your last meal before going to bed is often an underrated advice. But according to the research, it actually works. In the study, researchers looked at how timing of food consumption affected body fat and body mass index of the participants.

We found that the timing of food intake relative to melatonin onset, a marker of a person’s biological night, is associated with higher percent body fat and BMI, and not associated with the time of day, amount or composition of food intake,’ said Dr Andrew W. McHill, the lead author of the study.

’These findings suggest that the timing of when you consume calories, relative to your own biological timing may be more important for health than the actual time of day.’

Researchers found that individuals with high body fat percentages consumed most of their calories shortly before going to sleep when melatonin levels were high.

Individuals with lower percentages of body fat tended to go to bed a few hours after their last bite.

The research team, however, acknowledged several limitations that need to be considered for future work, including the fact that the population of college-aged individuals may not be representative of the entire population in terms of food choice and circadian or body clock rhythm.

They concluded that these results provide evidence that the consumption of food during the circadian evening plays an important role in body composition.

Source of this article:

It’s not what you eat, it’s WHEN you eat that matters: Study shows timing your meals right is the key to beating obesity - and here’s how to work out your food schedule

 

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