Intermittent fasting no higher for weight reduction than consuming all through the day, research finds
As more and more people become overweight and obese, diet madness is growing in popularity. One of the most popular diets today is intermittent fasting, an eating pattern that alternates between fasting and eating. Previous studies have linked intermittent fasting to weight loss.
Now, a team of researchers at the University of California at San Francisco has found that intermittent fasting is no better for weight loss than eating consistent meals throughout the day.
The study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, aimed to determine the effect of limited-time eating on weight loss and metabolic health in overweight and obese patients.
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No weight gain
In the randomized study of 116 overweight or obese people, the researchers randomized the patients into two groups – the CMT (Consistent Meal Timing) group and the TRE (Time-Restricted Eating) group.
In the CMT group, participants were asked to eat three structured meals per day, while the TRE group was asked to eat ad libitum or from 12:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. The later group was also instructed to prevent caloric intake from 8:00 p.m. to 12:00 p.m. the following day.
The clinical study lasted 12 weeks and included both men and women between the ages of 18 and 64 years. Participants have a body mass index (BMI) of 27 to 43. The researchers also issued bluetooth scales to monitor their weight loss.
After 12 weeks, both groups lost some weight from baseline, about 2.07 pounds in the limited-time diet and 1.5 pounds in the consistent meal group. However, there were no significant differences in the secondary measures such as B. Changes in weight, lean mass, fat mass, fasting insulin, and hemoglobin A1c levels.
In the study results, the team found that intermittent fasting or limited time eating was associated with slight weight loss that was not significantly different from the decrease seen in the control group.
“Timed eating is no more effective at losing weight than eating during the day without other measures,” the team concluded.
“Our results are in line with an earlier study that shows that a recommendation to avoid breakfast does not affect weight results in patients trying to lose weight. However, they contradict previous reports that highlight the beneficial effects of TRE on weight loss and other metabolic risk markers have been described, “they added.
The team added that prescribing TRE did not result in weight loss compared to a control prescription of three meals a day. TRE did not change any relevant metabolic markers.
Intermittent fasting and its benefits
Intermittent fasting has recently become more popular and common.
Contrary to the study results, previous studies have shown the health benefits of intermittent fasting, including reducing high blood sugar levels, helping cells repair, reducing insulin resistance, reducing inflammation in the body, and promoting heart health.
For example, a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, short-term fasting increases metabolism by 3.6 to 14 percent and helps burn even more calories.
Previous studies have also shown that intermittent fasting can increase weight loss, but the key may be calorie reduction. In some cases, fasting can result in faster weight loss if participants cut down on up to 500 calories a day. This means that the reported weight loss could be tied to a calorie restriction rather than an intermittent fast.
- C. Zauner, B. Schneeweiss, A. Kranz et al. (2020). The energy consumption in the resting state with short-term hunger is increased as a result of an increase in the norepinephrine level in the serum. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10837292/