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September 8, 2020 • Healthy Eating & Nutrition

When and How Often We Eat Impacts Weight Control

eating dining out vegetables

When we eat and how often we eat may impact our weight control for better or for worse. In a provocative report that included data from more than 50,000 healthy adults followed over several years, scientists uncovered definite associations between meal timing and meal frequency and weight control. Here were the key take home findings.

  • Eating less frequently (no more than three times a day including snacks), consuming breakfast, and eating the largest meal in the morning was tied to less weight gain and a lower BMI.
  • Eating more than three times a day, including snacks, and eating the largest meal of the day at dinner was tied to weight gain and a higher BMI.
  • Including 5-6 hours between breakfast and lunch and an overnight fast of 18 hours were additional factors tied to superior weight control over time.

This new science adds to a growing body of evidence that suggests eating more earlier and less later, as well as lengthening the overnight fasting period, is the best way to go for metabolic health.


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Master WLFL Title Slide

The Journal of Nutrition, 2017; jn244749 DOI: 10.3945/%u200Bjn.116.244749