You may have heard of the new dietary trend “intermittent fasting” and immediately thought about long stretches of being starving with zero energy. But the truth is that intermittent fasting doesn’t have to mean no eating for days or weeks on end, it can also just mean an eating plan that limits the amount of hours you consume food each day.
NPR reports about a new study that had participants follow a more subtle intermittent fasting plan that allowed them to eat between the hours of 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and always stay well hydrated. What researchers found was that people were able to lose weight and lower bad cholesterol and blood pressure while eating for only ten hours per day.
Participants involved in the study published in the journal Cell Metabolism, were not told what to eat - just when. But because they were limited to eating for only 10 hours per day, many of them reduced the amount of calories they consumed by about 8.6%. Author of the study, Dr. Pam Taub, explains some of the results they found when participants ate for 10 hours per day. Dr. Taub says, “We saw a 3% reduction in their weight and a 4% reduction in abdominal visceral fat.” She adds, “When you go into a fasting state, you start to deplete the glucose stores in your body and you start to use fat as your energy source.”
Some other benefits reported from participants was more quality sleep as well as a feeling of having more energy throughout the day. Director of the Center for Circadian and Sleep Medicine, Dr. Phyllis Zee, points out that there have been studies that suggest even limiting your eating period to 12 hours per day can have a positive impact on health.
What do you think of the new research that suggests the timing of when we eat each day can have an impact on health?
Do you try to limit the amount of hours you eat per day?