Time-restricted feeding or intermittent fasting is a diet that alternates periods of feeding with periods of sustained fast. The fasting diet has been around for a while now and is wildly popular around the world and a number of celebrities are known to have been practicing it to keep fit. Several research studies have also been conducted on the health impacts of following time-restricted feeding, including effects on the dieter's blood pressure, blood sugar levels and body weight and the verdict has been split on whether intermittent fasting is good for us or not. However, a recent study has said that it may help improve glucose-tolerance in those who are at an elevated risk of having Type-2 diabetes. The study indicates that setting strict meal timings and following them may be key to improving blood sugar levels in at-risk individuals.
The study was titled, "Time-Restricted Feeding Improves Glucose Tolerance in Men at Risk for Type 2 Diabetes: A Randomized Crossover Trial" and it was conducted by researchers at University of Adelaide, in Australia, and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, in La Jolla, CA. The study was conducted with the participation of 15 men aged between 30 and 70 years, all of whom were at an elevated risk of developing Type-2 diabetes as indicated by increased waist circumference. All the participants had a waist size of over 102 cms and they were asked to follow a strict 9-hour feeding time window. In other words, they were allowed to only eat within this 9-hour time period in a day. The participants were asked to eat whatever they normally ate, just during a restricted time period and the results indicated improved glucose tolerance in the men.
The results of the study were published in the journal Obesity. Talking about claimed benefits of time-restricted feeding, the study report said, "Time-restricted feeding (TRF) is a novel dietary tool that time-limits energy intake for up to 12 h/d without necessarily altering diet quality or quantity. TRF reduces body weight, improves glucose and insulin profiles, and reduces insulin resistance in mouse models, even in the presence of a high-fat diet." The report in the journal said, "In conclusion, this study has demonstrated that 1 week of TRF improves glucose responses to a meal in men at risk for type 2 diabetes, irrespective of when TRF is commenced."
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