A recent study out of Brigham and Women’s Hospital has found that consuming 100g of milk chocolate either first thing in the morning or last thing at night did not cause weight gain. In fact, consuming milk chocolate in the morning might actually help burn body fat and decrease blood sugar levels. Here’s what we know about the study and its results…
Researchers from Brigham hospital joined forces with investigators at the University of Murcia in Spain to find out if altering the time of day that you eat chocolate has any particular effect on the body.1
Their research looked at 19 postmenopausal women who added 100g of chocolate into their diet either in the morning, within an hour of waking up, or the evening, within an hour of going to bed). They then compared any weight gain at the end of the trial, to women who had no chocolate intake.1
The researchers found that neither morning or night-time intake led to weight gain and they actually concluded that in some cases, a high intake of chocolate in the morning can help the body burn fat and reduce blood glucose levels.1 Evening chocolate also was found to alter both resting and exercise metabolism the following morning.1
Both morning and evening chocolate was also found to reduce hunger and appetite for sweets, which could have also contributed to limited weight gain.1
One of the lead researchers, Frank Sheer, said of the results “our findings highlight that not only ‘what’ but also ‘when’ we eat can impact physiological mechanisms involved in the regulation of body weight”.1
One limitation however is that the hospital’s report of the study didn’t specify a time-frame, so we’re not sure how long the women changed their diets for.
Take Home Message
So, next time you get a chocolate craving at 8am, eat it! Our cravings are usually there for a reason, whether it’s for the health of our body or our mind. Whatever it may be, a little chocolate never hurt nobody, and if this study is anything to go by, it actually could benefit us.