Many of us try to eliminate carbs while watching our weight, or at least try to eat carbs in the morning only, in hopes of burning them off during the day. But a study recently published in Obesity found that eating a low-calorie diet in which carbohydrates have a heavier presence at dinner may actually offer a plethora of health benefits.
The study was conducted on 100 random obese Israeli police officers, both male and female, ranging from age 25 to 55. They were put on one of two diets for six months, either a low-calorie diet that offered more carbs at dinner or a standard low-calorie diet. Both diets contained about 1400 calories per day. Both groups were given the same amount of protein, fat and carbohydrates. However, the experimental group ate more protein than carbs at breakfast and lunch and loaded up on carbs at dinner, opposed to the control group that scattered their carbs evenly throughout the day.
Interestingly enough, six months later, the experimental group that ate more carbs at dinner experienced the most weight loss, body fat mass reduction and lower abdominal circumference than the control group. Not to mention, they saw bigger improvements in their glucose balance, insulin resistance and cholesterol levels.
Additionally, they also had high satiety levels during the day. The researchers believe that these results may be caused by the fact that the experimental group had a smaller decrease in leptin levels than the control group. Leptin is a hormone that is manufactured in the fat cells that tells the brain when the body is full. Low leptin levels may make the brain sense that the body is starving and elicit feelings of hunger. More carbs at night? Sign us up!
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