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Meal timing affects weight

I liked this study which shows changing the times we eat can greatly affect body weight. Sounds simple to me!

The study showed that mice fed a high fat diet during their “sleep” phase of their daily cycle gained significantly more weight than mice fed the exact same diet only during their “awake” phase.

I am not a fan of studies on mice, but it made me really think twice about any late night snacking. :)


Video with a great explanation of daily circadian rhythms

This quick video is aimed at travelers looking to avoid jet lag. What is does well is explain how our biological clock and circadian rhythms affect everything from our blood pressure, temperature and hunger.


The meal timing study

Mice fed a high fat diet during their sleep time of their daily cycle (actually day as they are nocturnal) gained significantly more weight than mice fed the exact same diet during their awake time.

The mice fed at their sleep time over 6 weeks had a 48% weight gain compared to 20% weight gain by the mice fed during their wake time. In addition, mice fed when they would normally be asleep gained 8% more body fat than those eating during normal wake time.


What the researchers said …

The study’s authors suggest that internal “clocks” or circadian rhythms help regulate how the body uses energy. Our body temperature drops at night when we should be asleep and this has been linked to an increase in storage of body fat.

This study on mice doesn’t conclusively give answers on how to time our meals. What is does suggest is that you should sleep at night and eat during the day. Don’t eat when you should be asleep!

“Simply modifying the time of feeding alone can greatly affect body weight,” reported the researchers from Northwestern University. The findings were published in the journal Obesity.


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One Response to “Meal timing affects weight”

  1. Steve says:

    Makes good sense! No more late-night snacks :-)

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About Kellie

Kellie is 37 years old and together with her brother Steve makes up the My Health Software team.

She helps on the websites and gathering news for the programs. Kellie worked in the medical industry prior to having her two children (8 and 6) and has a strong interest in self awareness and management of health conditions.


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