Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Is it "Time" to Eat?

Does it matter what time you eat?  It's commonly heard that eating at night results in weight gain and fat storage.  The otherside of the arguement says however, that it doesn't matter when food is eaten, but it's the quantity and quality of the food that really counts. Which side is correct?  According to some new research, when you eat and/or don't eat may have a significant effect on the body's metabolism.

The research shows that when mice were put on a strict 8 hour feeding/16 hour fasting schedule it resulted in rescheduling of circadian rhythm hormone release.  During times of eating, genes that trigger the release of enzymes needed to break down sugar were more active.  Whereas, during times of fasting genes that trigger fat breakdown for energy were more active.  So what does all of this mean?  As the article states, a clearly defined eating schedule puts metabolic enzymes into "shift work" optimizing the burning of sugar and fat.  The more defined these feed/fast periods are the stronger the response of the genes become. The feed/fast pattern used in this research very closely mirrors that used in intermittent fasting (IF). 

Optimize your metabolic potential and give it a shot! 


1 comment:

  1. Firstly - love your blog! Learning about nutrition is always good and you present the info extremely well. What is your view on this blog in terms of when to eat? My thinking has always been to stay away from the late night snacks as ideally the body should not be going to sleep full of food. But then the other side of the sword depends on what kind of food it is and how much, if any, exercise was done in the period before sleep. If so, then some carbs would be fine to go to bed with and let the body digest them overnight. Quality of the food is most important to me as it is fuel we are putting in our bodies. Portion size with plenty of petrol is the aim!