Shorter Window for Weight Loss

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Could the key to weight loss be restricting the number of hours a day that we eat? Research from the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in the US, and reported in the New York Times , suggests a 12 hour window for eating could help maintain a healthy weight.

The study: under the microscope

The same research team conducted an earlier study on mice, which showed that mice that ate during an eight-hour window maintained their weight? even when eating the same diet as mice that could eat whenever they liked.

In this study, published in Cell Metabolism journal, the researchers separated male nice into four groups:

High fat High fructose High fat and high sucrose Normal diet

Within each group, some mice could eat around the clock, while others were limited to 12 or 15 hour eating windows. They all took in the same amount of calories.

Want to know the results. Incredibly, the mice who had no limits on when they ate were all obese and had developed metabolic disease. And the mice who could only eat within a 12 or 15 hour range? Surprise surprise, they remained healthy and warded off obesity even despite being given cheat days

Even more surprising, the mice that only ate regular mice food ended up having less body fat than mice on the same diet that could eat whenever they wished.

Putting it in perspective

So what's the takeaway here?

As associate professor Satchidanana Panda said, Time-restricted eating didn't just prevent but also reversed obesity?

Why? Well that's the big unknown at the moment. It could be that when we eat affects our body clock (circadian rhythms). How is our body clock linked to weight gain? Because our body clock regulates gene function, including those that regulate metabolism.

Want to try it for yourself. Try eating only in a 12 hour window ? say from 7am to 7pm and observe if it helps you maintain a healthy weight.

As always, chat to a health advisor before making changes to your diet ? such as a nutritionist , dietitian , or naturopath .

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