— Topics —
When you eat (Chrono-nutrition)

2020.10.12

How the Number of Meals Affects Weight Gain

Contents

  1. Frequency of eating can contribute to weight gain. 
  2. How many meals a day can increase your weight the most? 
  3. Can eating more often help you lose weight? 
  4. Cause and effect are sometimes reversed.
<The Bottom Line>

1. Frequency of eating can contribute to weight gain.

Some experts say that, “if the total daily caloric intake is the same, it doesn't matter how many meals a day you eat," but I assure you that the number of times you eat definitely affects your weight gain (or loss).
Indeed, if total caloric intake alone were the direct cause of weight gain, then frequency might not matter much, but my theory, as I have explained many times, is different from that.

base weight

(Figure-1)

I mentioned that the phrase "gain weight" has two meanings, and let me explain part (B) first. (see Figure-1)

Many people think that, “taking in more calories or more carbohydrates makes you fat,” which means going back to their base weight. 

In this case, I think it doesn’t have much to do with how many meals you eat a day. Rather, it’s the calorie or carbohydrate intake that matters. People who normally keep their weight lower through dieting or who cut excess body fat through workouts can gain weight if their caloric intake is higher than necessary, regardless of the number of meals they eat.

As for part (A), the frequency of eating has a lot to do with it. Since base weight itself goes up by inducing intestinal starvation, eating more frequently and in a more spread out manner is less likely to result in weight gain, regardless of caloric intake. When you feel a little hungry, other foods enter your stomach again, which means that undigested foods are more likely to remain in your gastrointestinal tract. 

Conversely, less frequency of eating and longer periods of time between meals can cause intestinal starvation, which can lead to an increase in base weight value (basically, three + one factors are necessary for intestinal starvation to be caused).

2. How many meals a day can increase your weight the most? 

Let me explain (A) when the base weight is increased.

Based on my idea, people tend to gain weight if they skip breakfast or lunch and eat only two meals a day. However, eating two meals a day does not necessarily make everyone overweight. 

Actually, how many meals you eat a day is a matter of "meal intervals," and is only one of the "three(+one) factors” conditions that induce intestinal starvation.

Three (+one) Factors to Accelerate “Intestinal Starvation”


The most important thing is, "what to eat (quality and balance of food).” But in addition, a person's "digestive ability" and "the way they eat (eating speed, number of times they chew, and hydration during meals)" also have a great impact.

For instance, even if everyone eats exactly the same food, people who can digest them faster reach the state of intestinal starvation faster. Also, even if the number of meals is the same, the time of day at which you eat also makes a difference (late lunch, late dinner, etc.).
    

What time you eat

Let me explain this in greater detail with some examples.  

<A co-worker who gained weight with only one meal a day>

When I was working part-time in a restaurant in college, there was a co-worker who gained almost ten kilograms since he started working. 

He ate only the meal for employees there that was served at night and nothing else, which meant that he had one meal a day. In his high school days, it seemed like he could not gain weight even though he was eating three meals a day and more calories. 

(The meals there were often a bowl of rice and a few side dishes, miso soup, etc.) 

I once tried to eat one meal a day in order to gain weight, but I was so worried about nutrition that I ended up eat too many different kinds of food at once. Also, it really stressed me out so I could not continue. 

In the end, it is "What you eat" that matters. If your diet is skewed toward carbohydrates and digestible meat/fish and low in fiber, I think there is a great possibility that you will gain weight by eating one meal a day.

<A friend of mine who gained ten kilos by eating four to five meals a day>

A friend of mine gained more than ten kilograms by eating four to five meals a day when he was studying for a college entrance exam after he failed the first try. He belonged to a judo club in high school, and was very thin, even though he ate a lot of calories. (But please note that it is not that the five meals a day that makes you fat, but what you eat and how you eat that matter)

light meals

When I asked him, he told me that light meals such as sweet bread, rice balls, and cup noodles made up more than half of those meals.

If even a light meal such as pastries, hamburger, or rice balls counts as "one meal," then how many meals you eat a day does not account for the result. 

3. Can eating more often help you lose weight?

Although I cannot make an assertion based on just the number of meals, I believe that increasing the frequency of your meals is one correct way to lose weight. According to a study by Professor Saeko Imai at Osaka University (2014), there was a change in blood sugar levels in diabetic patients depending on what time of day they ate cookies. 

Blood sugar levels

(The graph arranged based on a newspaper article)

The results of the experiment showed that eating cookies as a snack between meals kept the peak blood sugar levels lower than eating them just after a meal. 

This is an experiment with cookies, but you can change cookies with a slightly heavier diet, like cheese, fried mushrooms in oil, or even sautéed meat.

Please don’t get me wrong. I am not saying that it helps you lose weight because it suppresses the rise in blood sugar.

Eating frequently to not feel hunger leaves more undigested food in the intestines, which, I believe, first reduces the absorption rate, and then in turn, blood glucose levels are less likely to rise.

4. Cause and effect can be reversed.

In some cases, epidemiological studies that examine the "association between meal frequency and weight gain" may go wrong.

For example, suppose you survey obese or overweight people and asked them how many times a day they eat. Let's assume that most of them answered four to five times. But you cannot take the aggregate results and say, “eating four or five times a day makes you gain weight.” 

The reason for this is that the most important things are missing: what you eat, and how much you eat, etc. As I said earlier, if one hamburger or one cup of noodles counts as "one meal," it makes no sense.

Second, we never know if they gained weight because they ate many times, or they ended up eating as a result of being too hungry.

Assuming that as a person’s body gets bigger, the stomach and intestines also become bigger and their digestion gets stronger, it is natural that they feel hungry faster even if they eat the same amount as others.

In other words, they may not gain weight because they eat more often, but because they are bigger, and as a result, they may end up eating more often than others. Therefore, in this case, you can say that the cause and effect are reversed.

The Bottom Line

(1) Some experts say that, “if the total daily caloric intake is the same, it doesn't matter how many times you eat," but from my intestinal starvation theory, the number of meals definitely affects weight gain (or loss).

(2) The number of meals is a matter of "meal intervals" and is one of the "three(+one) factors" conditions that induce intestinal starvation. Although eating one or two meals a day tends to increase weight gain in the long run, the most important thing is "what you eat” and other factors also influence this.

(3) Increasing the number of meals may also help you lose weight. It is important to leave more undigested food in the intestines and to not feel hungry.

(4) Epidemiological studies that only examine “the relationship between meal frequency and being overweight” are meaningless. The reverse causality may occur: some people are too hungry and as a result, eat four or five times a day.
   

2020.08.19

Does Eating Late at Night Really Make You Fat? (chrono-nutrition)

Contents

  1. It is natural to gain weight from eating at night.
  2. When late night eating habits lead to weight gain.
  3. It's impossible to explain weight gain with BMAL1.
  4. Thin people would rather lose weight. 
<The Bottom Line>

In Japan, many people (especially women) tend to avoid eating dinner, a dessert or sweets late at night (after nine p.m.) because they do not want to gain weight.

But does that really make sense? Actually, some people say that they have started eating dinner late at night and gained more weight than before, but I believe that is a misconception.
     

1. In a sense, it is natural to gain weight from eating at night.

While we sleep at night, our bodies are not resting. They are doing something very important for us. Although the mechanism may not be entirely understood, sleep is an important time for not only organizing and consolidating memories in the brain, but also for repairing and regenerating damaged tissues to prepare for the next day's activities. 

In particular, after sleep, the body secretes more growth hormone and other hormones, which stimulate metabolism, thereby repairing damaged cells throughout the body, recovering from fatigue, and enhancing immune function. And, the synthesis of protein and fat is promoted.

Thus, in a sense, isn't it natural that eating late at night tends to make everyone gain weight than in the morning or afternoon?

If you are on a diet regularly or a person who is trying to cut back on calories, you may gain a few kilograms overnight if you eat more calories than you need and go to bed.

However, that is the case when your present weight goes back to your base weight (see Figure-1), and regarding this, it doesn’t matter whether the meal was eaten at seven or ten p.m.

base weight

(Figure-1)

2. When late night eating habits lead to weight gain.

On the other hand, I sometimes hear that people did not gain weight when they were eating dinner around seven p.m., but gradually gained weight over time after working overtime and eating late at night.  But that is a separate issue from [1] above, and it can be explained by the fact of one’s base weight itself going up in my intestinal starvation theory. 

First of all, many people tend to skip breakfast if dinner is served late at night. This means, in most cases, they only have two meals a day, lunch and dinner.

unbalanced lunch

If you eat an unbalanced meal leaning toward carbohydrates and some protein such as ramen, curry rice, or hamburgers for lunch (quantity is not the issue), that is the only meal you have in your stomach since you have not eaten breakfast.

If you don't eat anything until nine or ten p.m., there is a possibility that intestinal starvation will be induced little by little.

And in this case, eating late is not a "cause" of weight gain, but a "consequence." The cause for this is an unbalanced diet skewed towards carbohydrates and meat/fish, and putting up with hunger over many  hours between meals.

One way to prevent this is to eat a well-balanced meal both at lunch and dinner. And if dinner is going to be late, you can diversify meals by snacking on sandwiches, cookies, milk, etc. around five p.m.

(Balanced lunch box)

3. It is impossible to explain weight gain with BMAL1.

In Japan, many experts confuse the two meanings of [1] and [2], and explain them as if the secretion volume of BMAL1 and weight gain are correlated.

BMAL1 is a "clock gene" protein that promotes fat synthesis, and its secretion begins to increase around six p.m. and peaks between ten p.m. and two a.m., which seems to be thought as a rationale behind the fact that people are several times more likely to gain weight if they eat late at night(e.g., ten p.m.) than eating at six p.m. for the same number of calories. 

However, I think that explanation is a bit of a stretch. The reason is that the "digestion time" is missing.

For example, if they eat a meal at ten p.m., it will take four to six hours for it to be digested and absorbed, depending on the person. Fats/oils are particularly indigestible, so they may find that even in the morning after seven to eight hours, their food is still undigested and their stomach is upset.

In other words, if it is not digested, it cannot be absorbed, so there is no way to correlate the meal time with the BMAL1 value.

The reason why BMAL1 peaks between ten p.m. and two a.m. is that if we humans have been eating dinner around six p.m. since ancient times, I suppose that BMAL1 levels are also higher at just about the time of finishing digestion and absorption so that lipids can be successfully synthesized.

4. Thin people would rather lose weight. 

If people eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner properly, I believe, for most of them, eating before bed does not cause much weight gain.

As I said earlier, if a person who normally moderates their caloric intake eats sweets or ramen late at night, they may gain a few kilograms, but it means their present weight goes back to their base weight and should stop at a certain weight. (This should be easily proven by research.)

Also, In Japan, there are many thin people who have a droopy stomach(gastroptosis) or weak stomachs, and even if they eat dessert, sweets or a light meal before bedtime in addition to their three meals in order to gain weight, it is more likely that they will not gain weight. In fact, I suppose that they may even lose weight (at least to me, this is one hundred percent true).

The reason being that, by nature, it is good to rest your body and your stomach while you sleep, but if you eat before going to bed, your gastrointestinal tract has to continue to work throughout the night. I suspect that this may result in decreased absorption and decreased cellular regeneration.

The Bottome Line

(1) In a sense, everyone should be more likely to gain weight eating at night because more bones, muscles, and body fat are built while we sleep. Especially those who usually eat fewer calories because of dieting will gain a few kilos if they eat more calories than necessary. But in this case it doesn't matter whether they eat at seven p.m. or ten p.m.

(2) In terms of my intestinal starvation theory, late-night eating habits can lead to an increase in weight. Those people tend to skip breakfast and eat two meals a day. If they eat a carbohydrate-rich, unbalanced meal for lunch and hold off until a late dinner, it can lead to inducing intestinal starvation and weight gain over time.

(3) It is impossible to correlate the secretion of BMAL1-a protein of a "clock gene"-that promotes fat synthesis, with meal time and say that, “late night eating makes people gain weight.” This is because the time for digestion and absorption is not taken into account.

(4) For some thin people who want to gain weight, eating a high-calorie meal or a sweet before bed in addition to their three meals a day would probably work in the direction of losing weight. Even while sleeping, energy is used more towards digestion, which should decrease the absorption of nutrients and cell synthesis.
   

2020.05.25

The Reason Why a Well-Balanced Breakfast Helps Prevent Weight Gain

Contents

  1. "Metabolism" has become a magic word. 
  2. How eating breakfast affects weight management? My thoughts. 
  (1) A well-balanced breakfast can help prevent gaining weight.
  (2) Lightening your breakfast and lunch makes you more likely to gain weight. 
  (3) Skipping breakfast makes it easier to gain weight. 
The Bottom Line

In the previous article, I introduced the concepts of a "biological clock," and “chrono-nutrition,” but if you have not read them yet, please read the following article first.
This time, I am going to state my own thoughts on how eating breakfast affects weight management concretely by my intestinal starvation theory. 

[Related article]  Why "When to Eat?" is Important in Weight Management
    

1. “Metabolism” has become a magic word.

In Japan, it is often said that lean people who eat a lot but do not gain weight have a high metabolism. On the other hand, those who tend to gain weight are often told that they have a low metabolism. The word “metabolism” has been used like a magic word. 

The same idea goes for breakfast. Eating breakfast will raise body temperature and metabolism, and the nutrients and calories from breakfast and lunch will be burned off, so it is thought that people won’t gain weight even if they eat a lot. Many researchers and experts use metabolism as a silver bullet or a cure-all to solve obesity, but I beg to differ. It has already been proven that people who are overweight have a higher basal metabolism.
  

2. How eating breakfast affects weight management? My thoughts. 

I think the concept of “chrono-nutrition” is very important in this day and age, but there are many aspects that cannot be explained by metabolism or hormones alone. I believe, as I have mentioned in previous articles, that it makes more sense to explain this with my intestinal starvation theory.
   

(1) A well-balanced breakfast can help prevent gaining weight.

Breakfast is the start of the day, and when you eat breakfast, your resting gastrointestinal tract becomes active.

If you eat a variety of food at that breakfast, such as dairy products, fibrous vegetables, seaweed, legumes, and fish or meat products, you can prevent intestinal starvation because undigested food will remain in your intestines for around ten hours or so (this is because our intestines are seven to nine meters long). 

Three balanced meals a day

Also, if you eat well both at lunch and dinner, you are less likely to gain weight, since there is some undigested food remaining over a twenty-four-hour period in your stomach (it means that your base weight does not go up).

(Typical Japanese breakfast we used to have)

This is why those who are originally slim or medium-sized and have this kind of lifestyle are unlikely to change their body shape throughout their lives, even if they eat without thinking about calories.

In other words, "when you eat, what you eat, and how you eat" affects weight gain/loss because they are closely related to the movement of the intestines.

(2) Lightening your breakfast and lunch makes you more likely to gain weight.

On the other hand, breakfast can be fattening (in the sense that it increases one's base weight) even if one eats it.

It is a so-called inverted triangle-type diet, in which breakfast and lunch are light (one might even skip lunch) and dinner makes up for the missing nutrients and calories.

light breakfast and lunch

For example, if you just have a light breakfast (a piece of bread, coffee and ham) in the morning, and a rice ball, hamburger, or instant noodles, etc. for lunch, it is easy to induce a intestinal starvation state before dinner, contrary to the situation described in (1) above.

When the gastrointestinal tract becomes active after breakfast, you usually defecate, and when you do, the only food left in your stomach is what was eaten at breakfast (in this case, mainly carbohydrates and easily digestible protein). 

If lunch is also a simple carbohydrate-based meal and lacks fiber and other nutrients, all the food in the intestines will be digested by dinner, which makes it easier to develop a state of intestinal starvation. 

In short, if breakfast is well-balanced from various food groups, you are less likely to gain weight, but if it is a simple and unbalanced one, there is good chance you will gain weight over the long haul. 

Some chrono-nutritionists say that “an unbalanced breakfast makes the body clock reset halfway,” but some research has shown that the combination of “glucose and protein”-food that raises insulin levels-starts the body clock the best, so in this case, I think the explanation "you gain weight easily since your metabolism doesn't start properly,” does not apply.
   

(3) Skipping breakfast makes it easier to gain weight.

Skipping breakfast does not make everyone fat, but I think, if some conditions are met and overlapped, it makes you more likely to gain weight.

The biggest one is simply a matter of "what to eat" and the interval between meals. Eating only two meals a day makes the meal intervals longer. If you finish dinner at nine p.m., you will not eat for almost fifteen hours until the next day, at noon.

Skipping breakfast makes you hungry, so in Japan, people tend to eat a carbohydrate(rice or noodles)-and meat-focused meal. Many of them are satisfied with just being full, and their meal may lack fiber and other nutrients.

hearty meal at lunch

However, since they have not eaten breakfast, all they have in their gut is that meal at lunch.

If they don’t eat until eight or nine p.m. in that state, they are likely to induce intestinal starvation (a state where everything is digested) and their base weight may go up in the long run.

Some experts also point out that skipping breakfast and eating a carbohydrate-dense meal when hungry can cause blood glucose levels to spike, leading to high insulin secretion. This may be true, but in any case, this type of eating habit is the worst.

You can prevent intestinal starvation by doing the following: If you don't have time to eat in the morning, at least drink some milk, or eat a balanced lunch with a smaller amount of carbohydrates. And if you have to eat late at night, eat something such as milk, chocolate or nuts, even around five p.m.
  

The Bottom Line

1) Breakfast is the start of the day, and a well-balanced breakfast prevents intestinal starvation by allowing undigested food in the gastrointestinal track to remain around ten hours. If you eat three balanced meals a day, some undigested food will stay in your stomach all day long, and your base weight will be less likely to go up.

2) If breakfast is skipped and meals are eaten twice a day (lunch and dinner), the interval between meals will be longer, which can easily cause intestinal starvation, depending on what you eat. Eating a carbohydrate-rich meal at noon when you are starving is also bad for your health in terms of raising blood glucose to somewhat unhealthy levels.

3) Even if you eat breakfast, if your breakfast and lunch are simple and unbalanced, you are more likely to induce intestinal starvation before dinner. This kind of eating habit may increase your weight in the long run, even if the amount of food eaten is small.

4) The reason why "when you eat, what you eat, and how you eat" affects weight management is because it closely ties into the movement of the intestines. The influence of hormones, of course, cannot be ignored, but it feels odd to explain it simply by giving the excuse of, ”It’s your metabolism.”
   

2020.03.22

Why "When to Eat" is Important in Weight Management (The Concept of Chrono-Nutrition)

Contents

1. The current state of obesity in Japan
2. What is "chrono-nutrition?"
3. Researchers’ views and my argument
   (1) Skipping breakfast makes it easier to gain weight.
   (2) Try to eat a balanced meal.
   (3) It is difficult to gain weight from 6 am to 4 pm.
4. My opinion toward the overall argument

In this article, I would like to introduce the basic concepts of a "biological clock" and "chrono-nutrition," and discuss the importance of eating breakfast in particular, with my thoughts on the subject. I will write about “late dinners” in another blog.

Long story short, I recognize the importance of "when to eat, what to eat, and how to eat," and I have no objection to the statement that eating a balanced breakfast is important not only for your health but also for prevention of weight gain.

However, I am uncomfortable with the use of "metabolism" as a catch-all term to explain whether you gain weight or not. Is “metabolism” such a panacea? I believe it should be better explained using my intestinal starvation theory.

1. The current state of obesity in Japan

"As of 2012, the number of diabetic patients in Japan is about eight-point-nine million (or twenty-two-point-one million including prediabetics). Diabetes started increasing in the 1970’s.

Then, you might think, “it is because Japan became rich and Japanese people started eating delicious food,” but the average daily energy intake dropped from twenty-two-hundred kcal (in 1970) to eighteen-hundred and fifty kcal (in 2010). 

Nevertheless, the number of diabetics has increased nine fold. Similarly, obesity has increased by forty percent among middle-aged and older adults between 1975 and 2010, even though the energy intake of Japanese people decreased by sixteen percent.

Today, people gain weight not because they eat much. Rather, they gain weight although they eat less."

(Reference: Yasuo Kagawa, Clock Gene Diet, 2012, Pages 14-16)

2. What is "chrono-nutrition?"

These below are just theories from the book listed above.
  

(1) Discovery of a "clock gene"

"Recent research has unraveled this mysterious phenomenon. It was a discovery of a clock gene of humans in 1997. Not only humans, but also all animals and plants have a “circadian rhythm” in which one day is twenty-five hours.

When we wake up in the morning and the sunlight (blue wavelength) is transmitted to the “central clock gene” in our brain, the twenty-five-hour circadian rhythm is reset to twenty-four hours and the day starts.

However, our internal organs do not receive the sunlight.
By eating breakfast, nutrients spread to every corner of the body, and they inform the “peripheral nerve gene” in each cell of the arrival of the morning, and that resets the twenty-five-hour circadian rhythm to twenty-four hours. 

(2) The effect of nutrients differs depending on when they are taken.

In Japan, the term “chrono-nutrition” was used for the first time in 2008 by the Japan Society of Nutrition and Food Science. The more people try to lose weight, the harder they try to decrease the amount they eat from morning until night, but the effect and influence differ significantly depending on the time of day when food is consumed.

From early morning until about four p.m., the body is less likely to store body fat, and after nine p.m., calories are more likely to be stored as body fat.

It is said that the following three are important: ①When to eat (the timing of the meal), ②What to eat (dietary balance), and ③How to eat (the order of eating, the number of meals, etc.).
  

(3) What and how to eat

Eating vegetables first, followed by main dishes such as meat/fish, and then carbohydrates last, prevents a rapid rise in blood glucose levels, making the same menu less fattening.

Eating two meals a day, for example, is prone to storing fat in the body over time. It is better to divide it into multiple portions and eat one small portion at a time, even though it is the same total amount of food.

If you have to eat dinner late at night (e.g., at nine p.m.), it is better to divide your meal and eat carbohydrates by six p.m. and the other side dishes at nine p.m.."

(Reference: Yasuo Kagawa, Clock Gene Diet, 2012, Pages 16-24, 64-67)

3. Researchers’ views and my argument  (the relationship between breakfast and being overweight)

The following is a brief summary of the general theory of chrono-nutritionists in Japan. I will also show my rebuttal at the same time.
   

(1) Skipping breakfast makes it easier to gain weight.

"Breakfast signals the "peripheral nerve genes" in each cell that the morning has come, resetting the biological clock. As a result, body temperature and metabolism rise, and the nutrients and calories taken at breakfast are burned off, so that even if you eat a lot, you are less likely to gain weight.

Moreover, the calories taken in at lunch are also used metabolically, and do not turn into body fat easily, even if you eat a hearty meal.

On the other hand, if breakfast is skipped, the metabolic rate remains low and the body is prone to weight gain.
A calorie-dense meal comes in all at once at noon, and it cannot be converted into energy rapidly, making it easier to accumulate body fat."

My argument

Aren’t nutritionists using metabolism as a magic word? It is true that breakfast will get the body's cells moving and increase body temperature and metabolism, but that is because the nutrition has been introduced. For a normal range of a meal, the increased metabolism should not exceed the calories consumed at breakfast. At the very least, the caloric surplus should be greater than for those who do not eat breakfast. 

Also, if you skip breakfast, your metabolism may remain low, but that's because your body is running on low fuel to reduce unnecessary energy expenditure, and if you eat lunch, I suspect your body temperature will likewise rise and your metabolism will increase within thirty minutes or so after you finish your meal.

Furthermore, even breakfast should be eaten when the metabolism is low after waking up from sleep. 

slim and fat

In other words, if we try to distinguish lean from overweight people by metabolism, all nutrients are absorbed equally by all, and the lean people burn more of them as energy.

Of course, metabolism may create some differences, but I don't think this is a sufficient explanation for weight gain.

(Some experts point out that skipping breakfast can lead to overeating at lunch and a rapid rise in blood sugar levels. That is another matter to be considered.)

(2) Try to eat a balanced meal

"An unbalanced breakfast (only bread and coffee or rice balls, etc.) resets the “peripheral nerve gene” halfway, so metabolism does not start properly and makes it easier to gain weight over time.

In an experiment to measure the calculating ability of children, it turned out an unbalanced breakfast such as only rice balls or bread and tea was almost the same as eating nothing. "
  

My argument

Of course, I admit that a balanced breakfast affects nervousness and concentration. However, even one slice of toast, ham and coffee increases your body temperature and provides energy for the brain. Then, how much metabolic difference is there between these two diets? 

In fact, some studies have reported that "glucose alone did not start the biological clock, but the combination of ‘glucose and protein’ started the biological clock the best," so I don’t think the explanation that an "unbalanced breakfast tends to make you fat since metabolism does not start properly" is sufficient.

Also, in the case of growing fruits or vegetables, isn’t it normal for them to grow bigger if you provide them with balanced nutrition? Even for human growth, it is essential to eat a nutritionally balanced meal.

Thus, the argument that eating a well-balanced breakfast increases metabolism and burns the extra calories you have ingested sounds strange. I think my theory better explains why an unbalanced diet makes people gain weight over time.
  

(3) It is difficult to gain weight from six a.m. to four p.m.

four p.m.

"The period from six a.m. to four p.m. is the time when the clock gene protein "BMAL1," which promotes fat synthesis, is not produced as much, so it is hard to gain weight even if you eat a calorie-dense meal or sweets."

My argument

I believe this contradicts what they mentioned earlier(1); "skipping breakfast keeps your metabolism low and eating calorie-dense food at noon makes you easy to accumulate body fat."

Of course, I understand that hormonal secretion, even with the same calories/nutrition, makes a difference in fat storage, bone formation, etc. between morning and night. But, after all, isn't it how you eat that matters, not determined by the time of day alone?

By the way, I would like to discuss "BMAL1" in more detail in another article about "late dinners."

[Related article]  Does Eating Late at Night Really Make You Fat?

   

4. My opinion toward the overall argument

While the idea that the reason for gaining weight is, “the total amount of caloric intake” is still pervasive, I think it is great progress that people came to understand “①When to eat, ②What to eat and ③How to eat” that affects the prevention of weight gain or losing weight.

Also, I have no doubt that breakfast and a well-balanced diet are important for concentration, weight management, and overall health.

Dinner time

However, the strange thing about this theory is that they are trying to explain everything that does not fit with the calorie theory, mostly by “metabolism.” Isn’t this a mere theory just linking “people who are slim though they eat a good breakfast and lunch” and “people who skip breakfast and tend to gain weight” to the values of metabolism? 


Moreover, as they say, “chrono-nutrition, if the relationship between the timing of the meal and nutrition determines whether or not people gain weight, then the explanation should only be "when to eat.” 

Nevertheless, they combined ②what to eat and ③how to eat, which sounds odd. As I mentioned at the beginning, my intestinal starvation theory should be more fitting. In the following blog, I will explain, “why eating a balanced breakfast leads to the prevention of weight gain” based on my theory.

[Related article]  The Reason Why a Well-Balanced Breakfast Helps Prevent Weight Gain