Feasibility of time-restricted eating and impacts on cardiometabolic health in 24-h shift workers: The Healthy Heroes randomized control trial

Cell Metab. 2022 Oct 4;34(10):1442-1456.e7. doi: 10.1016/j.cmet.2022.08.018.


Over a quarter of the workforce in industrialized countries does shift work, which increases the risk for cardiometabolic disease. Yet shift workers are often excluded from lifestyle intervention studies to reduce this risk. In a randomized control trial with 137 firefighters who work 24-h shifts (23-59 years old, 9% female), 12 weeks of 10-h time-restricted eating (TRE) was feasible, with TRE participants decreasing their eating window (baseline, mean 14.13 h, 95% CI 13.78-14.47 h; intervention, 11.13 h, 95% CI 10.73-11.54 h, p = 3.29E-17) with no adverse effects, and improved quality of life assessed via SF-36 (ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT03533023). Compared to the standard of care (SOC) arm, TRE significantly decreased VLDL particle size. In participants with elevated cardiometabolic risks at baseline, there were significant reductions in TRE compared to SOC in glycated hemoglobin A1C and diastolic blood pressure. For individuals working a 24-h shift schedule, TRE is feasible and can improve cardiometabolic health, especially for individuals with increased risk. VIDEO ABSTRACT.

Keywords: TRF; circadian; diabetes; firefighters; hypertension; intermittent fasting; quality of life; shift work; sleep; time-restricted eating.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Video-Audio Media
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Pressure
  • Cardiovascular Diseases* / prevention & control
  • Fasting
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Glycated Hemoglobin
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Quality of Life*
  • Young Adult


  • Glycated Hemoglobin A

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT03533023