The journey to a healthier lifestyle depends heavily on the amount of calories intake because that will determine future weight gain or loss. In addition to the number of calories you eat, you also need to consider your macro split which divides your food intake by food type i.e. carbs, fats, proteins, etc. While some believe that this is all it takes, they are mistaken because an understated factor is also meal timing. Here’s why meal planning is crucial.
Daily Energy Requirements
Everyone has a different energy requirement. If you are someone who works out, the ideal time for you to consume your carbs will be a few hours before your workout so that your body has the fuel to cope with the intense training. Eating a hearty meal at night is fruitless as it only contributes to weight gain and possible indigestion. The best way to distribute your meal intake is to eat more during the day and reducing consumption by night.
Diurnal insulin sensitivity is an important factor to consider because the majority has been noted to exhibit greater insulin sensitivity during the day and lesser during the later hours. For that reason it is advised that carbs must be consumed more during the day. The greater your insulin sensitivity, the better your body will cope with carbs and their digestion.
We all have different hunger thresholds at different times of the day because we all have different routines so it is completely normal for one to feel hungry at a certain time. In order to avoid increased calorie intake later, schedule your meal around the time you feel hungry.
Changing Routines and Circadian Rhythms
We lead busy lives therefore it is very normal to skip meals and instead prioritize snacking. These alterations in the normal circadian rhythm are a prime contributor to changes in metabolism as well as unhealthy fluctuations in weight.
Meal Timings and Sleep Schedules
Sleep is a prime contributor in determining your meal intake. Many people tend to skip breakfast and then opt for a larger meal later on during the day whereas others have a habit of eating in the middle of the night. These people are at increased risk of having an increased BMI. Sleep cycles and weight gain are correlated with subjects exhibiting fluctuations in weight due to reduced sleep or lack of sleep due to weight.
Research and Results
According to reports, late night snacking has been directly associated with poor dietary quality and skipping meals has been known to cause significant alterations in eating habits as well as patterns. Studies have also shown that early meal eaters exhibit greater weight loss than those who eat their meals late. The latter group not only lost lesser weight but also at a much slower pace. This reveals the direct influence of circadian rhythms on weight regulation.
Meal timing is a direct influencing factor when it comes to weight maintenance. In order to opt for healthier lifestyle, prioritize your meals and their timings.