A Time to Eat and a Time to Exercise

Evelyn B. Parr; Leonie K. Heilbronn; John A. Hawley


Exerc Sport Sci Rev. 2020;48(1):4-10. 

In This Article

Future Perspectives

Optimal cardiometabolic health for individuals at risk of chronic lifestyle-related diseases results from interventions in which dietary intake is reduced and/or quality is improved, and exercise of sufficient mode, duration, and intensity is performed.[23,90] However, adherence to changes in habitual dietary patterns is often considered more arduous than medical therapy,[91] and the majority of individuals report "a lack of time" as the major reason for not undertaking regular exercise.[92] As such, the debate becomes "what priority should be given to modifying diet versus implementing exercise training for improving health outcomes?" As energy, via food, is required to sustain life, it is perhaps no surprise that dietary modifications are often the first in line of attack in the arsenal of lifestyle interventions to prevent/treat many metabolic diseases. Although there is an extensive menu of dietary options available to improve metabolic health outcomes, their success/failure, as with any exercise intervention, depends on long-term adherence.[93] We believe that exercise training undertaken in accordance with national and international guidelines imparts greater whole-body and tissue-specific metabolic health benefits than any current dietary intervention. Whether TRE in humans confers additive benefits to disordered metabolism above and beyond those induced by exercise training remains to be determined experimentally.