Type 2 Diabetes: Eating Three Meals a Day Could Be Beneficial

“We believe that through this regimen, it will be possible for [people with diabetes] to significantly reduce or even stop the injections of insulin.”


Usually, doctors recommend people with type 2 diabetes to eat small meals at regular intervals about six times throughout the day. But this type of diet approach may cause problems in some people who need intensive medical intervention.

To dig deep and overcome such problems, researchers from Tel Aviv University, Israel, have hypothesized that eating as per your natural “body clock,” which means eating three larger meals a day, could be beneficial for controlling blood sugar levels.

They explained that doing so might help your biological processes to synchronize and reduce the amount of insulin you require.

Study author Prof. Daniela Jakubowicz said, “The traditional [diet for people with diabetes] specifies six small meals spread throughout the day but has not been effective for sugar control, so [people with diabetes] require additional medication and insulin. And insulin injections lead to weight gain, which further increases blood sugar levels.”

“Our research proposes shifting the starch-rich calories to the early hours of the day,” she added. “This produces a glucose balance and improved glycemic control among [people with type 2 diabetes].”

She explained, “We believe that through this regimen, it will be possible for [people with diabetes] to significantly reduce or even stop the injections of insulin, and most anti-diabetic medications, to achieve excellent control of glucose levels.”

The study, published in the journal Diabetes Care, has noted that a three-meal-a-day approach found to be more effective at losing weight and controlling blood sugar levels. The diet requires eating a breakfast that includes bread, fruit, and sweets in the morning, a sizeable at lunch and a small meal (excluding starchy foods, fruits, and sweets) at dinner.

The researchers found that diabetic patients who at six meals a day did not lose much weight and did not have good control over blood sugar levels.

Prof. Jakubowicz noted, “Their [people who followed the three-meal-a-day approach] need for diabetic medication, especially for insulin doses, dipped substantially. Some were even able to stop using insulin altogether.” “In addition, the [three meal diet] improved the expression of biological clock genes. This suggests that it is more effective in controlling diabetes and may also prevent many other complications, such as cardiovascular disease, aging, and cancer, which are all regulated by the biological clock genes.”