Time Your Health Right

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By: , – By Jessica Girdwain, of Woman's Day
9/3/2012 6:00 AM   :  15 comments   :  12,953 Views

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Feel like all of the advice you hear tells you to do more? Eat more salad. Drink more water. But it's not just about doing more, it's about doing what you already do—like taking a walk or drinking coffee—at the right time to maximize the benefits. "Your biological clock regulates when you produce certain hormones and chemicals that affect just about everything, from your energy levels to how quickly you burn calories," says Timothy H. Monk, PhD, director of human chronobiology research at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

 


7:00 A.M. Eat an Egg (or Two)

Protein is the nutrient that's crucial to helping you feel satisfied, and eggs clock in at about 6 grams of protein each. "Protein lowers levels of hormones that prompt hunger and boosts levels of hormones that help you feel full," says Heather Leidy, PhD, who led a study at the University of Missouri-Columbia that found a protein-rich breakfast reduces cravings and overeating.

 

11:00 A.M. Pay Your Bills

"You're at your best mentally mid-morning, since this is when your body temperature rises and levels of the hormone cortisol peak. These changes keep you alert," says Dr. Monk. Schedule tasks that require focus and attention, like paying bills or planning meals.

 

12:00 P.M. Drink Coffee

Sip a cup of java with lunch and you may reduce your risk of diabetes—without disrupting your sleep later. Drinking a few cups of coffee (regular or decaf) per day was associated with a 34% lower risk of developing diabetes in a recent American Journal of Clinical Nutrition study. Experts think that compounds in coffee can help regulate your body's blood sugar response to a meal. Having it now ensures that the buzz wears off before bedtime.


Click here to learn more about the best times to do everything each day!


 
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Have you tried doing some of these tips already? If so, has it made a difference for you? If not, will you give them a try?


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Comments

  • BANNERMAN
    15
    Thanks for sharing. - 3/3/2014   12:40:17 AM
  • 14
    Somehow I have to figure out how this applies to me...I work nights, go to school in the morning, and sleep in the afternoon/evening. So I have to change these times around. - 9/27/2012   11:21:38 AM
  • 13
    I found this article interesting and it provided food for thought. As with all of these things, you need to put it into perspective and see how you MIGHT incorporate some of the ideas into your life. I will take a look at what I eat and when I perform at my best and take things from there - thanks SP! - 9/6/2012   3:07:37 AM
  • 12
    Great blog - good information! - 9/5/2012   8:13:41 AM
  • JMB369
    11
    This was a disappointing article. I have been interested in the field of chronobiology for many years, and this article trivializes it. As others have mentioned, one size does NOT fit all. Biorhythms vary from person to person. Therefore my mental alertness time might not equal someone else's. What is important is to pay attention to our own rhythms and adjust our schedules accordingly.

    I happen to be a morning person, and I discovered nearly 40 years ago that I do my best mental work before noon. My college dorm mates thought I was crazy to study before breakfast, and to be in bed by 10:30 p.m. My ex-husband and both of my children are night owls. They are just not "with it" until after 10 a.m.

    All that said, I think the article at least raises our awareness that different times of day are better for different activities, as long as we also remember that these optimum times vary, too. I have many friends who start their days with exercise, and that's their way of waking up. For me, late afternoon is the best time to exercise, because it boosts my metabolism at a time of day when I would feel sluggish and tend to snack.

    As for eating and drinking at various time, again, there is no one size fits all. I enjoyed this article, but I wish it had been written a little more scientifically, rather than blatantly popularizing various theories. - 9/4/2012   9:17:45 AM
  • JAZZI64
    10
    i to love coffee ,but in moderation because it makes me jittery through out the day so i switch to folgers decafe ,still get the same taste but without the caffien ,and for more of a energy booster i take b-12 that way i don't feel sluggish in the morning so those that have a problem should try it, but ask your doctor first...because all of our systems are differant. - 9/4/2012   7:42:20 AM
  • 9
    Hmmmm. I have always loved coffee but the last few months it is always bitter or whatever and I end up switching to water. The last two weeks I have drinking chamomile tea and enjoying it. This morning, the coffee called me so I made a pot. It smelled yummy and the first sips were good.. That's all. Putting the coffee maker away again. And I eat egg white omelettes with a little feta cheese or spinach and mushrooms or plain. I can make one and put it in a 100 calorie, 8 gram fiber English muffin ... Yum. I Listen to body for everything...but remain open to suggestions. Thx. - 9/4/2012   7:16:43 AM
  • 8
    I also love coffee and I'm glad it's getting recognized for some of its health benefits :) - 9/4/2012   4:51:13 AM
  • 7
    I know I seem to feel better if I have toast with peanut butter as opposed to cereal with milk at least on workdays especially. - 9/3/2012   2:18:07 PM
  • 6
    I get nauseous if I eat anything heavy or requiring a good bit of digestive work that early. I'm usually eating light around 7:30 - 8:30 am and getting my protein from something like a cheese stick. I go for more protein later in the morning or at lunch.

    I won't drink coffee or tea - even with claims of health benefits. I simply do not like them and never have.

    Mid-morning is about the time I'm finally fully awake and alert, so I know not to do anything that requires real focus earlier. However, early evening is my most attentive and capable. Welcome to the natural world of a night owl reading reports written with an expectation of early to bed, early to rise. =) - 9/3/2012   2:00:18 PM
  • LUMATECK
    5
    Overall, I believe you need to know your body and understand how to read its signals. I have found that having protein in the morning works for me especially after my workout. - 9/3/2012   1:14:34 PM
  • 4
    Sounds about right to me. I wake up at 6:00 am, drink 1-2 cups of coffee which helps me wake up and active. I do not really eat breakfast which is something I really need to do. I do not get to eating until noon, and again by 6-8pm. Although, I sometimes randomly eat a banana, grapes, or crackers when I feel my stomach begin to growl. - 9/3/2012   12:38:45 PM
  • 3
    This is totally unrealistic for my lifestyle. I do not drink either wine or coffee. Coffee gives me the shakes like I have palsy, and wine does not mix well with my various pills. I take a morning nap when they claim I should be most alert. I get all the important things in and leave out the stressors.

    I do eat two eggs, because in spite of the claimed cholesterol the lecithin in the egg yolks counteracts it. Research has shown that whole eggs do not affect blood cholesterol! - 9/3/2012   11:56:25 AM
  • 2
    didn't find this article useful - two eggs puts me over my cholesterol limit for a day, and I typically don't drink coffee...I understand the idea behind using biorhythms but this was a poor example for it. - 9/3/2012   10:34:29 AM
  • 1
    I love coffee and like that idea of sipping a cup at lunch! - 9/3/2012   8:11:43 AM

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