Why Meal Timing Could Be A Game Changer For Diabetes Management

If you have diabetes, you may have employed several strategies for managing it. Between diet modifications, physical activity, and medications, there are many avenues you can take to keep your condition in check. In addition to these lifestyle modifications, a new study is now suggesting that the timing of your meals may have a significant impact on diabetes management as well.

According to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), diabetes occurs when your body is not able to make or effectively utilize insulin, the hormone responsible for helping your cells absorb the sugar from the food you eat in order to make energy. Symptoms of diabetes can include frequent urination, extreme fatigue and thirst, numb or tingling hands and feet, and unexplained weight loss, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Those with diabetes are at a higher risk of developing various cardiovascular problems including stroke and heart attack (via Mayo Clinic).

Diabetes management is all about keeping your blood sugar levels in check and a new study reveals timing your meals may also help.

Managing diabetes by timing your meals

A recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM) discovered the possible link between certain types of food eaten at various times of day and the impact on the heart health of those with diabetes.

Researchers used data from the United States National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and examined the eating habits and health records of more than 4,500 people with diabetes over 11 years. They found that those who ate starchy foods in the morning, whole grains in the afternoons, and favored vegetables over processed meat in the evening had a lower chance of dying from heart disease (via JCEM).

Study author Dr. Wei Wei of Harbin Medical University in Harbin, China told Medical News Today that these findings may be associated with the internal clock of our bodies and cells. He explained that this research highlights the importance of those with diabetes aligning their eating habits with the body's natural sleep-wake cycle. Other researchers however point out that much more evidence is needed to corroborate these findings (via Medical News Today).