With A Healthy Lifestyle, The Body Copes Well With Rare Overeating

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With A Healthy Lifestyle, The Body Copes Well With Rare Overeating
With A Healthy Lifestyle, The Body Copes Well With Rare Overeating
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With a healthy lifestyle, the body copes well with rare overeating

If you lead a healthy lifestyle, you can periodically relax and enjoy the holidays - the body adjusts and bounces back quickly, as shown by a new Australian study published online in Endocrinology and Metabolism.

With a healthy lifestyle, the body copes well with rare overeating
With a healthy lifestyle, the body copes well with rare overeating

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If you lead a healthy lifestyle, you can periodically relax and enjoy the holidays - the body adjusts and bounces back quickly, as shown by a new Australian study published online in Endocrinology and Metabolism.

“From a health point of view, short-term overeating is really best limited to rare special occasions, such as during festivals and holidays. We're not advocating overeating as normal,”said study author Glenn Wadley, an associate professor at the Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition at Deakin University in Burwood. "If you generally eat a healthy diet and are physically active, don't worry about overeating."

Participants in the study, eight healthy young adults (mean age 22), overeat for five days, mimicking the typical weekend and vacation eating habits of many. This was followed by a 28-day experiment in which a typical chronic overeating was simulated.

The diet of the young people was 55% carbohydrate, 30% fat and 15% protein. On binge days, they got an extra 1,000 calories from chocolate, potato chips, and meal replacement drinks.

A study found that binge eating slightly increased the amount of visceral fat that surrounds internal organs and is considered unhealthy. However, there was no significant increase in total weight and fat mass, and fasting blood sugar and insulin production did not change.

“The body copes with short periods of overeating with extra carbohydrates and makes adjustments by shifting metabolism towards utilizing those excess carbohydrates,” explained Glenn Wadley.

Chronic overeating increased total fat and visceral fat, led to an increase in blood sugar and insulin response after meals, while fasting glucose did not change.

However, it should be emphasized that the results of the study are unlikely to apply to older people. Young people with healthy weights recovered quickly, while people aged 40 and older may find themselves more troubled after holiday feasts, said Samantha Heller, a registered dietitian at New York University's Langon Health.

In general, nutritionists do not recommend overeating more than several times a year, since the body is not designed to regularly consume large amounts of unhealthy foods.

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