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Reducing TOTAL Calories May Be More Important For Weight Loss Than Intermittent Fasting

Healthy looking food on table

Reducing TOTAL Calories May Be More Important For Weight Loss Than Intermittent Fasting


A study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association found that meal frequency and size were more important predictors of weight loss than just meal frequency. No association between weight change and the size of an interval between meals was found during the six-year trial.


Bennett, a professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, says popular "time-restricted eating patterns" called “intermittent fasting” have not yet proven whether reducing the total eating window during the day aids with weight loss.


In the study, that included nearly 550 adults, the time between the first and last meal of a person was studied to see if it could significantly affect their weight.


The majority of participants, 80%, identified as white adults, 12% Black adults, and 3% Asians adults. 51 was the average participant age. The average BMI was 30.8, which is considered obesity.


Adults with higher BMIs were more likely to be Black adults, older and to have Type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure.


Data analysis found:






Bennett reported that Intermittent Fasting may improve the body's rhythms and regulate metabolism, but this study in a large group with a wide range of body weights did not detect this association. 


Although meal frequency and total calorie intake were stronger risk factors for weight change than meal timing, findings could not prove direct cause and effect.


The study's participants were mostly educated white women from the mid-Atlantic region of the U.S. Researchers admit that the study had limitations because they didn't look at the complex interactions between timing and frequency of eating. They advise including a more varied group in future investigations.

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