Diet is important! Can we agree?
You know the whole “you are what you eat” thing? AKA, “garbage in, garbage out.” Well, maybe not exactly. But you get the idea, right? What you eat definitely affects your health.
In fact, most of the dietary guidance provided by schools, governments, doctors, and pretty much anyone else that had an opinion on the subject, (which is pretty much everyone!) has almost always related to the quality and quantity of the food we consumed.
Quality related to the nutritional value, or lack thereof, of a particular food or diet, or any beneficial or harmful effects related to that food or diet. Quantity mostly related to the caloric content of the food or diet, but sometimes could relate to the frequency of meals.
Well, everyone, I’m very happy to tell you, that there’s a new kid on the dietary guidance block, and that kid brings a whole new dimension to the conversation around diet and healthy eating.
You see, in recent years there has been a massive amount of research that proves that WHEN you eat might be just as important as WHAT you eat. That is, the timing of your meals, how often you eat, and, more importantly, the amount of time you spend NOT eating, can have dramatic effects on your health way above and beyond the old quality and quantity factors.
As an example, a study by the prestigious and hard to pronounce Salk Institute divided individuals into two groups that would consume exactly the same food and number of calories every day. The first group could eat at any time. IE, they could eat, snack, eat, snack, and forage to their heart’s content throughout a complete 24-hour day.
However, the second group, while consuming the exact same food and amount of calories, only had an 8-hour window to eat. That is, they had 16 hours every day of not eating.
Guess what happened?
Well, the second group had a significant reduction of both body and visceral fat, and a gain in muscle. The first group, the all-day all-night eaters, gained body and organ fat.
Say what? Did I hear that correctly?
Yes, my dietarily misguided friend, you did.
Now, in the interest of full disclosure, the individuals in question, were mice. And mice, aren’t humans. But, I’m trying to make a point!
My point is, that this research and tons of more just like it, coupled that the complete failure of traditional caloric reduction diets and an explosion in obesity and obesity-related diseases has led to an increased awareness and acceptance that both fasting and it’s close relative, time-restricted eating, can have massive impact on our health and ability to lose weight.
In upcoming posts I’ll be taking a deep dive into fasting, intermittent fasting, and time restricted eating.
Until then, Bon Apetite!