16:8 is a form of daily fasting wherein people eat whatever they choose for 8 hours and fast for the next 16 hours. A new study published in the journal Nutrition and Healthy Aging evaluated this strategy for obese individuals and found that the diet works and lowers blood pressure.

     The research was led by Krista Varady, associate professor of Kinesiology and Nutrition at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She and colleagues recruited 23 obese study participants with an average age of 45 and a body mass index of 35. Between 10:00 am and 6:00 pm participants could eat whatever and however much they liked but were only allowed water and calorie free beverages for the remaining 16 hours.

     The study proceeded for 12 weeks and the outcomes of the participants were compared with those from a previous study involving alternate day fasting in which participants ate as they pleased on one day and fasted on the next day. When compared to the previous study, the 16:8 participants lost on average 3% more of their body mass and their systolic blood pressure was lowered by 7 mm of mercury. The 16:8 fasting method is a viable method for weight loss.