If you're an intermittent faster who endeavors not to eat in any time ending in "AM," you may want to rethink that. NBC News reports on a pair of studies that point to there being value in constraining your meals to a 10-hour window—but making that window an early one.
The studies were small ones published Tuesday in Cell Metabolism, with the first looking at the effects of late versus early eating. It involved 16 overweight or obese participants who completed both early-eating (with meals at 8am, noon, and 4pm) and late-eating (with meals at noon, 4pm, and 8pm) protocols. It found that late eating increased waketime hunger—shifting meals four hours later doubled the chances of being hungry, per CNN—and decreased waketime energy, meaning participants burned calories at a reduced rate; their fat tissue seemed to hang on to more calories, too. "Combined, these changes upon late eating may increase obesity risk in humans," the study concluded.
The second study looked at shift workers, specifically firefighters, who worked a 24-hour schedule. It found that when meals were eaten within a 10-hour window, as opposed to more like 13 hours, health markers improved: "bad cholesterol" particles decreased in size and blood pressure and blood sugar level improvements were noted.