We all know that what we eat certainly has an effect on our weight management, but the times that we eat are just as important too. A new study was conducted and it was found that people who ate bigger meals later in the day lost less weight than people who ate earlier in the day.
420 people in Spain were followed during a 20 week weight loss program in the study that was conducted by Dr. Frank Scheer and Marta Garaulet. They were split into two different groups. The first group ate lunch before 3pm and the second group ate lunch after. In Spain lunch is the biggest meal of the day and makes up roughly 40% of the daily calorie intake. According to the study those who ate earlier in the day lost an average of 25% more weight than those who waited for their big meal.
Other factors such as hormones, sleep patterns, and breakfast consumption were studied as well but all seemed to be similar between the two groups leading the researchers to believe that the meal timing for the biggest meal of the day was what they should be looking at.
Our fat tissues and organs have a built in clock. When we eat at abnormal times, we mess up that internal clock and throw things out of rhythm which causes abnormal weight gain. We are able to tolerate higher levels of glucose earlier in the day.
It was also found that those who ate later in the day tended to either skip breakfast or eat less. This can be a disaster for dieters as this means that you are not eating for a good portion of the day. If you skip breakfast after not eating while you were sleeping, and then don’t eat until later in the day your body will store the food instead of digesting the nutrients and fats properly.
The researchers say more studies need to be done but the best rule to follow is the King, Prince, Pauper rule: Eat breakfast like a king, eat lunch like a prince, eat dinner like a Pauper.