The Energy Content and Composition of Meals Consumed after an Overnight Fast and Their Effects on Diet Induced Thermogenesis: A Systematic Review, Meta-Analyses and Meta-Regressions

Nutrients. 2016 Oct 25;8(11):670. doi: 10.3390/nu8110670.


This systematic review investigated the effects of differing energy intakes, macronutrient compositions, and eating patterns of meals consumed after an overnight fast on Diet Induced Thermogenesis (DIT). The initial search identified 2482 records; 26 papers remained once duplicates were removed and inclusion criteria were applied. Studies (n = 27) in the analyses were randomized crossover designs comparing the effects of two or more eating events on DIT. Higher energy intake increased DIT; in a mixed model meta-regression, for every 100 kJ increase in energy intake, DIT increased by 1.1 kJ/h (p < 0.001). Meals with a high protein or carbohydrate content had a higher DIT than high fat, although this effect was not always significant. Meals with medium chain triglycerides had a significantly higher DIT than long chain triglycerides (meta-analysis, p = 0.002). Consuming the same meal as a single bolus eating event compared to multiple small meals or snacks was associated with a significantly higher DIT (meta-analysis, p = 0.02). Unclear or inconsistent findings were found by comparing the consumption of meals quickly or slowly, and palatability was not significantly associated with DIT. These findings indicate that the magnitude of the increase in DIT is influenced by the energy intake, macronutrient composition, and eating pattern of the meal.

Keywords: breakfast; diet-induced thermogenesis; energy intake; macronutrient; meal; meal-induced thermogenesis; overnight fast; resting metabolic rate; thermic effect of food.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Basal Metabolism
  • Breakfast*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Diet, Reducing / methods*
  • Energy Intake*
  • Evidence-Based Medicine*
  • Feeding Behavior
  • Humans
  • Meals
  • Obesity / diet therapy*
  • Obesity / metabolism
  • Overweight / diet therapy*
  • Overweight / metabolism
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Regression Analysis
  • Snacks
  • Thermogenesis*
  • Weight Loss