Satchin Panda’s new book “The Circadian Code” is a must read for any self proclaimed biohacker. He concisely covers the most notable practices to optimize sleep, exercise, diet and mental performance. The primary focus of this book is on using a time restricted eating (TRE or intermittent fasting) window of 6-10 hours to fix our circadian rhythm. Dr. Panda sites study after study sharing the latest chronobiology data with the masses.
According to Satchin (and several studies – see bottom of post) we are happier, healthier, smarter and faster when we improve our circadian health. He suggests that we go to sleep and wake up at a consistent time, practice time-restricted eating, expose ourselves to light and try to exercise outside early in the am and if possible again in the afternoon.
Above is an example of a 10 hour time-restricted eating window. This start with an early high protein breakfast at 6am. The last meal of the day is finished at 4pm allowing for a 14 hour fast until breakfast the next day. There have been many studies searching for the optimal intermittent fasting period and which looks to be in the 8-14 hour range.
The most impressive examples of TRE cited in “The Circadian Code” are those of weight loss without calorie counting. By limiting the feeding window to eight hours participants were able to lose over 2% of their body weight in less than three months. The first two weeks of the above graph are baseline so no time restrictions were imposed during that period.
- Effects of 8-hour time restricted feeding on body weight and metabolic disease risk factors in obese adults: A pilot study – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6004924/
Early Time-Restricted Feeding Improves Insulin Sensitivity, Blood Pressure, and Oxidative Stress Even without Weight Loss in Men with Prediabetes – https://www.cell.com/cell-metabolism/fulltext/S1550-4131(18)30253-5
Circadian Timing of Food Intake Contributes to Weight Gain – https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1038/oby.2009.264
- Time-Restricted Feeding without Reducing Caloric Intake Prevents Metabolic Diseases in Mice Fed a High-Fat Diet – https://www.cell.com/cell-metabolism/pdf/S1550-4131(12)00189-1.pdf