Time Restricted Eating Benefits

This method of fasting in which you would consume food only within a short window of time in a day is said to be one of the easiest ways for beginners to get into fasting. A typical schedule for people on a TRE fasting diet is to eat inside a 12-hour window, and fast for the remaining 12 hours – sometimes referred to as the 12:2 fasting diet. 

The window in which you would eat can be any time of the day, depending on what is most comfortable for you. Many people fast from 8pm to 8am, incorporating an overnight fast. Although it is common to skip breakfast to extend a fast to 16 hours, research is showing that skipping breakfast may have negative impact on heart health.

Some of the lifestyle benefits of the TRE diet:

  • People on the TRE diet can consume food daily.
  • There aren’t any strict prohibitions on the kinds of food you can consume on TRE.
  • Windows of eating can be as long as 12 hours in a day in order to experience some of the biological benefits of a fast.
  • Eating and fasting times can be customized to your lifestyle, just as long as it’s fairly consistent day-to-day.
  • TRE is perfect for people with a typical or predictable schedule.

Medically speaking, there are some great biological benefits for those who participate in a time-restricted eating diet. Many studies have shown a correlation between time-restricted eating and weight loss, improved blood marker test results, longevity, and much more.

Recent research has also found that certain beneficial, biological processes triggered by fasting can still occur even if a person has been fasting for as little as 12 consecutive hours.

Here are some recent scientific articles and research on the time-restricted eating plan and some of the biological effects of the TRE diet:

  • The National Institute on Aging – a subdivision of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services dedicated to aging research – published their latest study in the Sept 2018 issue of Cell Metabolism, a peer-reviewed journal with a focus on physiology and molecular mechanisms. This study found that mice who had longer daily fasting times experienced improvements in health and longevity, out-performing mice who had access to food around the clock. Read the details on the study here.

  • A study from the Salk Institute for Biological Studies published in the Aug 2018 issue of Cell Metabolism found that mice fed within a 10-hour eating window –and then fasting for the remaining 14 hours– were leaner, fitter, and healthier than the mice who had 24-hour access to food containing the same number of calories. They found that timing the eating schedule in accordance to a mammal’s natural circadian clocks resulted in less genetic defects, staving off the potential on-set of certain diseases. You can find more details here.

  • Researchers from the University of Surrey conducted a study on the feasibility and effects of a time-restricted feeding diet on “free-living” human subjects, which was published on the Jan 2018 volume of The Journal of Nutritional Science. They found that a TRE schedule was sustainable for many of its self-governing subjects. At the end of the 10-week study, it was observed that the human subjects unintentionally consumed less calories daily on average, and that there was a reduction in adiposity, also known as obesity. This study may be provide some evidence for the application of a time-restricted eating diet for treating obesity.

  • Published in Cell Metabolism, researchers from Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, LA conducted a study to discover whether fasting improved cardiometabolic health due to weight loss or because of time-restricted feeding. They conducted their experiment with human men with prediabetes, and found that even if the men were eating the same amount of calories to maintain their weight, that being on a time-restricted feeding schedule still improved aspects of their cardiometabolic health.