LEARNING OUTCOME: To examine whether the type of meal pattern (3 meals, 3 meals and 3 snacks, or 6 meals) influences heart disease risk factors in obese adults on calorie controlled diets. TEXT: The frequency and size of meals may influence chronic disease risk. This study aimed to investigate the effects of 3 different iso-caloric meal patterns on serum lipid, fasting glucose and insulin levels. Obese adults (131F, 50M) were randomly assigned to one of three daily meal patterns—three meals (3D) (n=61); three meals and three snacks (3,3D) (n=59); and six meals. (6D) (n=61). Participants were instructed to follow the assigned weight loss diet for 6 months, with subsequent follow up at 9 and 12 months. Caloric intake was restricted to 1200 to 1800 calories daily, depending on gender and activity. All diets met national dietary goals (30% fat, 14% sat fat, 45-50% CHO, 15-20% Pro). Fasting bloods were collected and analysed at 3 month intervals. Preliminary findings at 3 months (one way ANOVA) suggest that subjects assigned to 6D (n=38) had significantly greater reduction in total cholesterol, compared to 3,3D (n=41) or 3D (n=33): (−0.39 (±0.9) (±sd) vs. −0.13 (±0.6), +0.09 (±0.7) respectively, p=0.036) and significantly greater reduction in triglycerides (−0.31 (±0.7) vs. −0.02 (±0.5), 0.02 (±0.4), p=0.020). No significant differences in fasting glucose, LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, insulin, and HOMA score of insulin resistance were noted at 3 months. Preliminary findings suggest that 6 smaller meals daily may provide greater reduction in selected heart disease risk factors over a three month period. Longer term outcomes will be needed to assess overall disease risk reduction.
American Dietetic Association’s 2006 Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo. Abstracts from the ADA FNCE Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo 2006 (Presented in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, Vol. 106, No. 8, Supp. 1) (Hawaii 16-19 Sepetember, 2006) p. A26-A26