Scientists Find A Better Diet For Blood Sugar Balance & Weight Loss

mbg Editorial Assistant By Christina Coughlin
mbg Editorial Assistant
Christina Coughlin is an editorial assistant at mindbodygreen. She graduated from Georgetown University in 2019 with a degree in psychology and music.
Scientists Find A Better Diet For Blood Sugar Balance & Weight Loss

Image by Mariela Naplatanova / Stocksy

Blood sugar can be hard to control sometimes. It affects our appetite, our weight, and even our mood (ever feel hangry?). We're constantly looking for easy and natural ways to balance blood sugar and regulate those hormones, and a new study may be giving us the key to understanding how we can do just that.

According to researchers at Tel Aviv University, a diet that follows our biological clock could be more beneficial to weight loss and blood sugar balance.

Previously, a traditional diet followed by diabetics to balance blood sugar was called the 6M diet, which consists of six small meals spread throughout the day. For this research, doctors proposed a new meal plan called the 3M diet, which was comprised of one starch-heavy breakfast early in the morning, followed by a substantial lunch and a light dinner. This diet was chosen to better align with our biological clock, which suggests the inclination to eat more in the morning while fasting later at night. 

The study followed a group of people with type 2 diabetes, randomly assigning each participant to follow either the 3M or 6M diet for three months. Over the three months, researchers measured their weight, blood glucose levels, appetite, and gene expression. 

The study yielded better results across the table from the 3M diet group. Participants showed increased weight loss, decreased appetite, and a decrease in daily insulin levels. 

The results also showed an improvement of gene expression in the 3M diet group, which may have larger implications outside of just blood sugar control. According to head researcher Daniela Jakubowicz, M.D., "This suggests that the 3M diet is not only more effective in controlling diabetes. It may also prevent many other complications such as cardiovascular disease, aging and cancer, which are all regulated by the biological clock genes."

What's next?

Now that breakfast has been identified as a specific meal of importance, the researchers plan to delve more into specific breakfast foods and how different proteins in those foods affects blood sugar and insulin levels.

With the alarming rise of type 2 diabetes in our country, it's important to understand the various ways that a healthy diet and exercise can help to prevent this disease. And although this study just followed people with type 2 diabetes, the elements of blood sugar control are applicable to anyone looking to practice better blood sugar control and lose weight in a healthy way.

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