Prolonged Delayed Eating Linked to Weight Gain, Increased Respiratory Quotient

HealthDay News — Prolonged delayed eating is associated with weight gain and increases in respiratory quotient, according to a study being presented at the annual meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies (SLEEP 2017), held from June 3-7 in Boston.

Namni Goel, PhD, from the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia, and colleagues examined the metabolic consequences of a consistent, delayed eating pattern versus a daytime one in 8 healthy adults. The cross-over study was conducted in 2 phases: daytime eating or delayed eating (3 meals and 2 snacks consumed between 8 AM and 7 PM or 12 PM and 11 PM, respectively). The sleep-wake cycle was kept constant, and exercise levels were controlled. Participants spent 8 weeks on the first condition, followed by a 2-week washout, and another 8 weeks on the second condition.

The researchers found that, compared with daytime eating, delayed eating correlated with weight gain and increases in respiratory quotient. There were also increases in insulin and cholesterol levels, and decreases in adiponectin. The ghrelin phase was delayed with greater amplitude with delayed eating, while there was no change in melatonin phase and amplitude.

“Eating later can promote a negative profile of weight, energy, and hormone markers — such as higher glucose and insulin, which are implicated in diabetes, and cholesterol and triglycerides, which are linked with cardiovascular problems and other health conditions,” Goel said in a statement.

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Timing meals later at night can cause weight gain and impair fat metabolism [news release]. Philadelphia, PA: Penn Medicine. Published June 2, 2017. Accessed June 16, 2017.