Why Skipping Meals May Be the Cause of Extra Pounds

Think that skipping a meal here and there is a fast-track ticket to shedding some pounds? Think again. A new study out of Ohio State University says the exact opposite is true—especially when it comes to weight in the stomach area.

In the study, mice that ate all their food in one meal, once a day, and fasted the rest of the day, developed insulin resistance in their livers (a sign of prediabetes where the liver doesn’t respond to insulin signals to stop producing glucose, which then gets stored as fat). When compared with the control group (a group of mice that had uncontrolled access to food), the restricted group originally lost weight—but regained it as calories were added back into their diet over the course of six days. That might not come as a total surprise, but the shocking result: The restricted group had more fat around their midsection than the group of mice that was free to eat all day long.

So what exactly does this say for humans? One big meal a day is most definitely not your best choice, and skipping meals may help cut calories in the immediate, but, long-term, it’s also quite possibly just setting you up for more fat gain than loss in the long run.

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