The Right Time to Eat Every Meal If You're Trying to Lose Weight

September 15th 2016

Thor Benson

You spend a lot of time counting calories and grams of fat when you're trying to lose weight. But focusing on when you eat may be as important as worrying about what you eat, new research suggested.

There's evidence that when you choose to eat your meals can affect your ability to lose weight.


Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, the saying goes, and it is certainly important to help your body set its blood sugar for the day.

Just be sure you don't wait to long to get your blood sugar going: Health experts argue it's best to eat within an hour or so of waking.

Also make sure you don't load yourself up with sugary things such as doughnuts.


You'll want to eat again within a few hours of breakfast to keep your body running on all cylinders, Satchidananda Panda, an associate professor in the Salk Institute’s Regulatory Biology Laboratory, told ATTN:.

Make sure you select an interval of eight to 10 hours a day where you'll be eating meals, and space each meal out during that time, Panda said.

If you eat breakfast at 8 a.m., you'll want to have eaten dinner by around 5 p.m. Lunch should fall somewhere in the middle.

Panda has done much research on the benefits of "intermittent fasting," where you limit the amount of time available for eating each day for health benefits.

"It improves circadian rhythm, and long fasting is good for health for numerous reasons," Panda said. "It improves overall health, and in some cases weight loss may be achieved."


It's best to have dinner within 10 hours of breakfast for the best health benefits.

If you get a late start on breakfast, it's best not to eat right before you go to sleep: Eating a large meal before sleep can cause heartburn, insomnia, and other issues as it's difficult to digest a large meal when you're lying down or trying to rest.

Eating a small, healthy snack before bed can actually be beneficial, as it can help you maintain healthy blood sugar levels while you sleep.