The old saying that one must “breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dine like a pauper” is based on the belief that consuming the bulk of daily calories in the morning optimises weight loss by buring calories more efficiently and quickly. However, findings from a new study show that eating the largest meal early or late in the day does not affect how our body metabolises calories. However, people who ate their largest meal in the morning reported feeling less hungry later in the day, which could facilitate weight loss.
This study recruited healthy subjects who were overweight or obese. The study participants' diets were controlled, and their metabolisms were measured over time. Each participant was assigned to eat either a morning-loaded or an evening-loaded diet for four weeks. The diets had a balance of 30% protein, 35% carbohydrate, and 35% fat. After a washout period of one week in which calories were balanced throughout the day, each participant crossed over to the opposite diet for four weeks.
The total daily energy expenditures for the participants were measured. The primary endpoint of the study was energy balance measured by body weight. The secondary endpoints included subjective appetite control, glycaemic control, and body composition.
Findings show that energy expenditures and total weight loss were the same for morning- and evening-loaded diets. Study participants lost just over 3 kg during each of the four-week periods. Subjects reported that their appetites were better controlled when they ate a bigger breakfast and they felt satiated throughout the rest of the day. However, this could be due to different metabolic responses of the participants. It is important to note that no diet fits all.
Source: Cell Metabolism
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