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Exercise before Breakfast Burns More Fat, Helps in Weight Loss

Update Date: Jan 25, 2013 09:25 AM EST

According to a new study, people can lose as much as 20 percent more body fat if they exercise before breakfast than after.

The study was conducted by researchers from the Northumbria University, who wanted to know if people exercising before breakfast would experience an increase in appetite later in the day.

"Our results show that exercise does not increase your appetite, hunger or food consumption later in the day and to get the most out of your session it may be optimal to perform this after an overnight fast," said Javier Gonzalez, one of the study authors, in a news release.

The study included 12 active participants who were asked to run on a treadmill either before or after breakfast. All the participants were then given chocolate milkshake.

The participants were then given pasta for lunch. Researchers assessed their food intake and calculated the amount of energy they had burned during the exercise routine.

Study results showed that not only exercising before breakfast led to greater fat burnout, but also exercising early in the morning did not raise appetite levels later in the day.

Dr. Emma Stevenson from Northumbria University said that the present study can give a practical approach to weight loss. However, the study was based on a small group of people, so the long-term effects of such a weight loss strategy can only be speculated.

"In order to lose body fat we need to use more fat than we consume. Exercise increases the total amount of energy we expend and a greater proportion of this energy comes from existing fat if the exercise is performed after an overnight fast," said Gonzalez, who is currently enrolled in a PhD in Exercise and Metabolism.

The study is published in the British Journal of Nutrition.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that people should get at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity every week.  

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