Consider a quarterback’s passing game: throw the ball too soon and his receiver isn’t in place; throw the ball too late and he risks getting sacked. Either way, he isn’t in sync with his team to move the ball up field. A similar scenario may occur when eating and sleeping habits are out of sync with the body’s circadian clock, leading to metabolic disturbances.
Over the past 20 years, scientists have assembled a clearer picture of the circadian clocks that keep human physiology tuned to the 24-hour light-dark cycle. Now, the basic science is giving way to human studies that reveal how a person’s sleeping habits, eating patterns, and diet may desynchronize the body’s clocks and contribute to metabolic problems like obesity or diabetes.
The findings have led scientists on a hunt for ways to reset the clock and restore healthy metabolism. So far, 2 behavioral interventions—improved sleep and time-restricted eating—show promise in animal and preliminary human studies.
This is a fascinating article. Cliff Notes: Try to stay in rhythm with natural day and night cycles. Stop eating early in the evening and stop exposing yourself to light and computer screens as it gets late. Once again, studies discussed in this article show that weight gain is not necessarily a function of how much is eaten, but of the interaction of food with our elegant and complex biology.