Why you should exercise BEFORE breakfast – you'll burn 20 per cent more body fat
Those who exercised before breakfast also burned 20% more fat than those who worked out afterwardsEarly morning exercisers did not consume additional calories during the day compared to their peers
12:04 GMT, 24 January 2013
13:15 GMT, 24 January 2013
Rise and shine! Getting out before breakfast will help you burn more fat during a workout
Early risers who exercise on an empty stomach before breakfast can burn up to 20 per cent more body fat, according to new research.
Researchers sought to find out whether the known benefits of exercising after an overnight fast were undermined by an increased appetite and eating more food later in the day.
A team from University of Northumbria asked twelve active men to perform a bout of treadmill exercise at 10am, either after they had eaten breakfast or in a fasted state having not eaten since the evening before.
Following the exercise all participants were given a chocolate milkshake
Later in the day, participants were provided with a pasta lunch which they were asked to eat until they felt 'comfortably full'.
Their lunchtime consumption of energy and fat was assessed and calculated, taking into account the amount of energy and fat burned during the morning period.
The researchers, led by Dr Emma Stevenson and PhD student Javier Gonzalez, discovered that those who had exercised in the morning did not consume additional calories or experience increased appetite during the day to compensate for their earlier activity
They also found that those who had exercised in a fasted state burned almost 20 per cent more fat compared to those who had consumed breakfast before their workout.
This means that performing exercise on an empty stomach provides the most desirable outcome for fat loss.
Dr Emma Stevenson and Javier Gonzalez (left) found that exercising on an empty stomach burns 20 per cent more fat
Mr Gonzalez said: 'In order to lose body fat we need to use more fat than we consume.
'Exercise increases the total amount of energy we expend and a greater
proportion of this energy comes from existing fat if the exercise is performed after an overnight fast.
'Our results show that exercise does not increase your appetite, hunger or food consumption later in the day and to get the most out of your session it may be optimal to perform this after an overnight fast.'
Dr Stevenson added: 'This research is very important in helping to provide
practical guidelines relating to food intake to individuals who are exercising
to maximise fat mass loss.
'It must be highlighted that this is a short-term study and we can only speculate on the longer term outcomes of such nutritional practices.'
The research, titled 'Breakfast and exercise contingently affect postprandial metabolism and energy balance in physically active males', was published online in the British Journal of Nutrition.