Early riser: Exercise before breakfast resulted in greater fat loss and larger reductions in the level of fat in the blood
So Dr Gill invited ten men into his lab three times, fed them, and put them through a battery of tests. On one visit, the men didn't do any exercise. On another, they did an hour's brisk walk ahead of breakfast and on the third they did the walk after breakfast. The men who exercised burnt off more fat than those who simply sat around. And those who did their walk before breakfast used up 33 per cent more fat than those who exercised after eating. Tests showed they also experienced a bigger drop in blood fats that raise the odds of heart disease, the British Journal of Nutrition reports.
Dr Gill said that while any exercise is good, that done before breakfast may be extra beneficial, as it leads to the body relying on its stores of fat for energy. He added that while the men taking part in the experiment only did a brisk walk, more strenuous activity can also be safely carried out on an empty stomach. This is because the body has enough energy reserves to cover 90 minutes to two hours of exercise. But those who can't bear the thought of delaying breakfast shouldn't despair.
Dr Gill said: 'The biggest difference is between doing nothing and doing something. If you are going to do something, then there is a slight advantage in doing it in a fasted state. 'But if you find you keel over because you can't do exercise before you have your slice of toast, then do it afterwards. You are still going to get a huge benefit However, dieters should note that even if they put off breakfast until they have been to the gym, weight loss will still likely be a slow process. Those who exercised before breakfast only burnt off around a tenth of a pound more fat than then men who had a relaxing morning.
Dr Gill said: 'Weight loss takes time. 'Most people gain weight very slowly. The average weight gain is 1.5lb a year in adulthood and by the time people get to 40, they are quite big. 'But it has taken 20 years to get there and they can't expect to lose it really quickly. 'If they did an hour's brisk walk every day for ten days or so, they'd lose about a pound, which is about as fast as you can really expect to lose weight. 'If they did it every day for a year, it would work out as quite a lot, but you are not going to see very big changes in a single day.'
Daily Mail UK