The most important meal of the day just got a bit more exciting. While the common narrative around sweet foods leads you to believe that indulging in these treats each morning would result in weight gain, a recent study published in The FASEB Journal says otherwise.
Researchers found that eating 100 grams of milk chocolate within the first hour after waking helped reduce glucose levels, burn fat, and, over time, decrease waist circumference in postmenopausal women. The benefits are partially attributed to chocolate’s ability to lower cortisol levels, which reduces the risk of emotionally-driven eating throughout the day.
The research found that the time of day you choose to indulge has an influence on the health benefits of chocolate. Eating 100 grams first thing in the morning or right before bed showed the greatest benefits, including an improved resting metabolism, decreased hunger for sweet foods, as well as longer and more consistent sleep. Despite the increased caloric intake, participants did not experience weight gain, which researchers attribute to timing, “Meal timing can influence circadian rhythms,” the study explains. “…Eating a high energy and high sugar food, such as chocolate, either at night or in the morning may have a different effect on the circadian system[…]and consequently on body weight and metabolism”.