Posted on Jun 15, 2023, 5 p.m.
According to research presented at the Endocrine Society’s Annual Meeting that was led by researchers from NYU Grossman School of Medicine, consuming more of one’s daily calories earlier in the day may help to counter weight gain, improve blood sugar fluctuations, and decrease the amount of time that blood sugar is above normal levels.
“This type of feeding, through its effect on blood sugar, may prevent those with prediabetes or obesity from progressing to type 2 diabetes,” said study lead author Joanne H. Bruno, MD, Ph.D., an endocrinology fellow at NYU Langone Health.
This study evaluated early time-restricted feeding (eTRF) which involved restricting calorie intake to the first eight hours of the day. This form of intermittent fasting was previously found to help improve cardiometabolic health and blood sugar levels. For this study, the researchers investigated whether these improvements were related to weight loss or the fasting strategy and the effects of eTRF on glycemia and inflammation independent of weight loss.
An eTRF feeding pattern wherein 80% of one’s calories were consumed before 1 PM was compared to a typical feeding pattern wherein 50% of one’s calories were consumed after 4 PM were compared among ten participants with obesity and prediabetes. Participants were randomized to one of the patterns for the first 7 days and switched to the other for the following 7 days. Participant meals were provided to meet each person’s caloric needs for weight maintenance to determine the weight-dependent effects of the strategy, while they wore continuous glucose monitors for the entire study period.
“We decreased the time these individuals were having high blood sugar levels with just one week of eTRF feeding,” said study senior author Jose O. Aleman, MD, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, & Metabolism at NYU Grossman School of Medicine. “The findings show that eating a majority of one’s calories earlier in the day reduces the time that the blood sugar is elevated, thereby improving metabolic health.”
Participant weights were found to be stable throughout the study and eTRF led to a decreased mean amplitude of glycemic excursion and decreased time above range compared to the typical eating pattern, and the time in range was similar between the two eating patterns.
“Based on this data, eTRF may be a helpful dietary strategy for diabetes prevention,” concluded Dr. Bruno. “Further studies are needed to understand the true overall benefit of these intervention strategies.”
Funding for the study was provided by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute Institutional Training Grant T32HL098129 and the National Institutes of Health grant K08 DK117064. Further funding was provided by Rockefeller University’s Shapiro Silverberg Fund for the Advancement of Translational Research.
As with anything you read on the internet, this article should not be construed as medical advice; please talk to your doctor or primary care provider before changing your wellness routine. This article is not intended to provide a medical diagnosis, recommendation, treatment, or endorsement.
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