I predict 2016 will be the year of the nourishing your gut diet.
My new book The Gut Makeover explains how to revamp your gut in a month for knock-on impact on your weight and overall health.
There are many simple foods you can introduce to improve the state of the bacteria in your gut to help your weight, skin, mood and immune system. These include prebiotic foods such as bananas, asparagus, and Jerusalem artichokes.
But one of the simplest things you can do to give your bacteria a chance to bloom in a way to support your health and weight, is to have a long stretch of at least 12 hours with no food between dinner and breakfast.
Animal studies indicate that this long stretch can lead to more variety of bacteria in the gut and for particular beneficial types of bacteria to bloom, leading to less aggressive extraction of calories from the diet, and balanced hunger hormones, which could be great for weight management. Sounds counterintuitive, but many people I've worked with report feeling much LESS hungry after a few days of not eating for 12 hours or more overnight.
So put simply, it just means avoiding returning to your fridge for a late night nibble. For instance, if you finish eating dinner at 7pm, don’t eat a single morsel of food again till 7am, but you can drink water if you need it. Try this for a month.
The beauty of this type of fast (known as Time Restricted Feeding) is that you don’t have to count any calories or go through periods in the day when you need to be performing well, battling hunger and irritability.
Chaix, A., Zarrinpar, A., Miu, P., Panda, S. (2014). Time-restricted feeding is a preventative and therapeutic intervention against diverse nutritional challenges. Cell Metabolism. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cmet.2014.11.001
Zarrinpar, A., Chaix, A., Yooseph, S., Panda, S. (2014). Diet and feeding pattern affect the diurnal dynamics of the gut microbiome. Cell Metabolism. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cmet.2014.11.008