The nation’s top group of heart doctors is offering new guidance on when and how frequently Americans should eat meals and snacks in order to control their weight and preserve or improve their heart health.
Based on a review of dozens of studies, the team of American Heart Association doctors behind the report was able to make a number of suggestions and observations, including:
1) Don’t skip breakfast: Daily breakfast consumption has been linked to better glucose metabolism and insulin levels.
2) Alternate-day fasting and periodic fasting may be effective for weight loss: More evidence is needed to determine whether this weight stays off in the long term.
3) Size of meals doesn’t seem to matter: It doesn’t seem to matter for weight loss or heart health whether you eat a few large meals or several smaller meals throughout the day, as long as the amount of calories remains the same.
The researchers also looked at the impact of meal timing (in other words, what time of the day people ate their meals), but said that this area needs further study.
Overall, the researchers stressed that Americans should adopt a “more intentional” approach to eating that focuses on the timing and frequency of meals and snacks.