The best time of day to start an exercise regimen is a topic that is frequently discussed as we work to combat obesity.
Given the variety of our weekday schedules, it might be difficult for us to commit to a certain time slot, but according to multiple experts, regular morning exercise is beneficial for people trying to lose weight.
Exercises in the morning are said to be conducted most often while fasting and aid in quick fat burning.
There are plenty of benefits to adhering to a morning routine, according to a thorough assessment published in 2021 by the Weight Control and Diabetes Research Center.
It was believed that scheduling workouts at a regular time might assist safeguard exercise time, making exercise planning less difficult.
It was asserted that morning routines promote habit development, self-regulation, and may be better for hunger and eating behavior.
The paper said that “The morning exercise group demonstrated greater decreases in fat (p=.049) and carbohydrate intake (p=.04) than the evening group, and there was a trend toward lower total kcal intake in the morning group (p=.06)…Results from at least one study of the acute effects of exercise timing on eating among adults with overweight/obesity also indicate a benefit of morning exercise for satiety…some data suggest that both earlier timing of kcal intake and a shorter eating window are beneficial for weight regulation.”
The same review also discovered that when we exercise, it may have an impact on our weight through physiological mechanisms such as increased fat oxidation, different circadian-based mechanisms, and sleep.
Dr. Mickey Mehta, a holistic health expert, shared that “Morning workouts are beneficial because your happy hormone called serotonin is at its highest level during sunlight hours. That’s why you feel your energy is liberated after a good night’s sleep. Ideally, this is the best time to exercise. In the evening its levels are usually much depleted. As per our circadian rhythms, our physiological response to the exercise in the morning is 100 per cent.”
So what is the real reason why human beings need maximum serotonin levels?
Dr. Mehta goes on to add that “Not for nothing is it called the body’s feel-good hormone. When serotonin is at normal levels, you are calm and in control of things and do not feel anxious or stressed. Since most of your body’s serotonin is found in your gut, it speeds up digestion, controls appetite and takes care of your gut health, which is increasingly becoming a marker for controlling all kinds of diseases. Your brain needs serotonin to make melatonin, a hormone that regulates your sleep-wake cycle. Morning exercise can move up the time for melatonin release while exercise in the evening delays melatonin timing.’
With that being said, Vijay Thakkar, a functional medicine expert, argues that a little flexibility is rather indicated.
Thakkar said that “Studies provide a compelling case which could potentially reshape weight management strategies. Some studies have found consistent morning workouts as being more effective than their evening counterparts in several key metrics, such as enhancing metabolism and improving insulin sensitivity. This echoes previous research suggesting that aligning exercise with circadian rhythms could improve health benefits. Having said that, from practical and empirical viewpoints, exercising any time of the day is the most critical factor in fighting obesity. If regular morning exercise is not feasible and sustainable, then evening workouts are superior to ‘no workouts’ in improving your metabolic health. So, keeping a sustainable exercise routine is critical. We should continue to engage in physical activity in all forms and at all times of the day while also understanding the potentially more remarkable benefits of morning exercise.”
The expert also stressed that consistency is most likely much more important than becoming fixated on one’s morning routine.
“The good news is that we can increase the amount of fat-releasing hormones and diminish fat-storing hormones in the body through regular physical activity, influence our health positively, and reverse our body condition by making the right lifestyle choice. When we strive for this balance, we increase our metabolism, through which the body’s energy expenditure increases, so a state of negative energy balance required for weight reduction is attained, which over time leads to lesser weight and reversing of obesity. This balance can only be brought about by regular exercise and can improve our metabolic health.”
As for exercise patterns that should be followed in order to keep obesity under control, Dr. Mehta recommends “moving, breathing, circulating and challenging your body in a calibrated way, either using your body weight or resistance training or using heavy equipment in the gym under supervision.”
Of course, there are many different options including swimming, cycling, running and yoga so keep in mind that part of what will ultimately make this routine a success is picking something you enjoy doing consistently.