Delaying breakfast by 90 minutes and eating dinner early may help with losing weight, says study

(Picture: Getty)

You might be told to never skip breakfast but according to a new study, delaying your morning meal might be the answer to losing weight.

Eating dinner earlier may also be helpful if you want to shift a few pounds, said researchers at the The University of Surrey.

They found that having brekkie 90 minutes later than normal and having an early dinner can help to reduce body fat.

And the best part? You don’t need to munch on a celery stick for your meals to see a difference.

Participants were asked to be on ‘time-restricted feeding’ patterns, a form of intermittent fasting, for 10 weeks.

Researchers investigated the impact of changing meal times on dietary intake, body composition and blood risk markers for diabetes and heart disease.

There were two groups in the study – those who ate their breakfast 90 minutes later than usual and had their dinner 90 minutes earlier, and a control group who kept their meal times the same as usual.

Participants were also required to provide blood samples and submit diet diaries before and during the project and complete feedback immediately after the study.

The study gave people freedom to eat what they wanted (Picture: Getty)

They had total freedom with the foods they ate, so researchers were able to asses whether this type of diet was easy to follow in everyday life.

The University of Surrey research team found that those who changed their mealtimes lost on average more than twice as much body fat as those who ate their meals as normal.

Although there were no restrictions on what the participants could eat, the researchers found that those who changed their mealtimes ate less food overall than the control group.

Eating at timely intervals made respondents eat less due to either a lack of appetite, eating opportunities, and cutting back on snacking, especially in the evenings, they reported.

The pilot data is still pretty small so but researchers are looking to do larger studies to see if time-restricted feeding has broad health benefits.

Study leader Dr Jonathan Johnston said: ‘Although this study is small, it has provided us with invaluable insight into how slight alterations to our meal times can have benefits for our bodies.

‘Reduction in body fat lessens our chances of developing obesity and related diseases, so is vital in improving our overall health.

‘However, as we have seen with these participants, fasting diets are difficult to follow and may not always be compatible with family and social life.

‘We therefore need to make sure they are flexible and conducive to real life, as the potential benefits of such diets are clear to see.

‘We are now going to use these preliminary findings to design larger, more comprehensive studies of time-restricted feeding”.

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