Changing your meal timing may help you lose weight, according to genetic research.

Weight loss or weight gain, though mostly thought of as a result of simple caloric imbalance, turns out to be much more complex and is influenced by a variety of factors including a person’s chronotype, which indicates the likelihood of being an early riser or a night owl.

Night owls can get away with a heavy meal later on in the day, while early risers will be better off scheduling their heavy meals earlier on.

With easy availability of high calorific, low-cost food, it’s not surprising that obesity is on the rise worldwide.

Naturally, many people are looking for solutions that are simple and quick. But an effective solution is unlikely without fully understanding the causes of your obesity.

More importantly, a solution that is not based on your unique physiological and psychological makeup is unlikely to work for you.

In this article, we look at how your chronotype may help you time your heavy meals and thus help you maintain optimal weight. But first, what is a chronotype?


A chronotype is a technical term used to refer to whether someone is a morning or a night person.


A recently published study by The University of Surrey found an association between timing of food intake and  weight gain. The study suggests that a heavy meal should be consumed 8 hours before melatonin sets in.

People who are not night owls and feel sleepy by 9 ’o clock should eat their heaviest meal by 1:00 p.m.  This will help them avoid gaining extra weight.

According to the study, mismatched meal timings and chronotype lead to weight gain irrespective of calorie intake, activity levels, macronutrient intake, clock time of meal etc.

In summary, if you are an adult then you are probably aware of your chronotype by self-observation.

However, if you are unaware or want to know your “genetic” or innate chronotype (as opposed to  environmentally “conditioned” chronotype), then, a gene test from 23andme or another company and the traits and personality report from Xcode will help you find this information.

Xcode life Sciences uses genetic raw data to provide information on whether you are a morning person or a night owl, as well as information on more than 30 personality traits.

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