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Rise and shine: Early birds make better food choices.

Toni-Ann DiSantis

Rise and shine: Early birds make better food choices.

[Daily Dose] “Early to bed, early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise,” Benjamin Franklin famously said. Cue eye rolls from the night owls out there! Wealthy and wise are up for debate, but early risers — both men and women — may indeed have a health edge. Previous research has shown that night owls have higher rates of diabetes, obesity, and heart disease, and a new study helps to explain why. Compared with night owls, morning people make better choices throughout the day, according to the research. Night owls tend to eat more sugary foods in the morning, more sugar and fat at night, and less protein overall. If you’re a night owl and these patterns sound familiar, don’t worry — you are not destined to ring in every midnight with a cheesy burger and ice cream! Consciously plan meals you love that are nutritious. Choose a protein-rich breakfast, and swap out junky snacks for nourishing plant foods (think fresh fruit, nuts, hummus and carrots). Want to hop on the early train? Genetics play a part in determining whether you’re inclined to burn the midnight oil or rise with the birds, but you can shift your habits. Try going to bed a half-hour earlier than usual to start, setting aside an hour before bed for winding down (no screens!), and set your alarm for the same time every morning. Or bust out your tent and sleeping bag, and head for the woods (or your own backyard!): Research shows that camping for a week can help to reset your body clock!