Study: High-Energy Breakfast, Low-Energy Dinner Effective In Blood Sugar Control

shutterstock_135242600Blood sugar level management is important for people with type 2 diabetes. They need to control blood sugar levels to better manage this incurable disease. But it is always easier said than done. Certain factors tend to play out in trying to keep blood sugar to manageable levels. Diet seems to play a big role. But the make-up of a diet that will be able to effectively help control blood sugar is not that definite yet. It may differ from one medical expert to another. But a recent study indicates that following a high energy breakfast and a low energy dinner works better in controlling blood sugar than the opposite.

Researchers from Wolfson Medical Center, Tel Aviv University and Hebrew University in Israel and Lund University in Sweden have shown in studies that a diet composed of a high energy breakfast and low energy dinner, or B diet, is effective in reducing glucose spikes in people with type 2 diabetes as compared to a low energy breakfast and a high energy dinner, or the D diet. Adjusting a diabetic’s diet in such a way can help improve blood sugar control as well as prevent the complications associated with type 2 diabetes. The findings of the study can be found in Diabetologia, the journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes.

The research group has previously tested this diet and its effects on obese non-diabetic individuals. But this time, the new study involved 18 participants composed of eight men and ten women who are suffering from type 2 diabetes for less than 10 years. The participants have an age range between 30 to 70 and a body mass index or BMI within 22 to 35 kg/m2. Participants were either treated with metformin or follow dietary advice or both.

In the said study, the participants were randomized to follow either the B diet or the D diet for a period of one week. Both diet plans contain the same total energy and calories. They only differ in terms of diet allocation on each meal. Participants were given set meals to eat at home for 6 days. On the 7th day, they were made to eat the meals at the clinic where blood samples were then taken at intervals of 15 minutes within a set interval for a 3-hour period. The same process was followed during lunch and dinner. Glucose levels were measured as well as insulin levels and other indicators associated with either glucose or insulin. After two weeks, the two groups exchanged diet plans and the same tests were repeated.

Results showed that participants of the B diet had post-meal glucose levels that are 20 percent lower and insulin levels that are 20 percent higher as compared to those who followed the D diet. Despite containing the same amount of energy and calories, those who consumed the B diet showed lower blood glucose levels and higher insulin levels compared to those who consume the D diet, especially during lunch.

According to Professor Oren Froy Hebrew University of Jerusalem and one of the authors of the said study, “These observations suggest that a change in meal timing influences the overall daily rhythm of post-meal insulin and incretin and results in a substantial reduction in the daily post-meal glucose levels. A person’s meal timing schedule may be a crucial factor in the improvement of glucose balance and prevention of complications in type 2 diabetes and lends further support to the role of the circadian system in metabolic regulation.”

Source: Diabetologia. (2015, February 24). High-energy breakfast with low-energy dinner helps control blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 26, 2015 from


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