Skip to Content

The CrossFit stimulus—constantly varied high-intensity functional movement coupled with meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch, and no sugar—prepares you for the demands of a healthy, functional, independent life and provides a hedge against chronic disease and incapacity. This stimulus is elegant in the mathematical sense of being marked by simplicity and efficacy. The proven elements of this broad, general, and inclusive fitness, in terms of both movement and nutrition, are what we term our CrossFit Essentials.

What we eat (quality), how much we eat (quantity), and when we eat (chrononutrition) all affect our health and performance. However, compared to the other two factors, chrononutrition is arguably the weakest of the three. In this installment of his series on meal timing, Tyler Hass explains why clever timing schemes are not a silver bullet and should be understood as a means to squeeze that last 5-10% of optimization out of a good diet and exercise program.

Read MoreMeal Timing: When Should We Eat?

Is breakfast the most important meal of the day? Do late-night snacks lead to weight gain? Tyler Hass examines common myths about meal timing and explains which are supported by the scientific literature and which have been debunked. He also describes the relationship between circadian rhythm and metabolism.

Read MoreMeal Timing: Chrononutrition

This article, the second installment in a four-part series on meal timing, discusses the physiological effects of various time-restricted eating patterns. Series author Tyler Hass reviews the scientific literature on the subject and calls for more studies on a wider variety of populations using different intermittent fasting strategies, better quality food, and more effective exercise protocols.

Read MoreMeal Timing: The Fasting Window

This 2020 human trial found 30 days of intermittent fasting shifted a variety of proteins in ways that are protective against cancer, inflammatory and immune disease, obesity, diabetes, the metabolic syndrome, and various pathological forms of cognitive dysfunction.

Read MoreIntermittent Fasting From Dawn to Sunset for 30 Consecutive Days Is Associated With Anticancer Proteomic Signature

This installment in Michael and Mary Dan Eades' multipart series on omega-3s and omega-6s discusses a 2019 study that hypothesized the increased n6/n3 ratio common in the modern Western diet causes deposition of fat in the liver. The study tests whether decreasing the fatty acid ratio to the lower levels that were common decades ago might promote the shedding of liver fat.

Read MoreEffect of a Low n6/n3 PUFA Diet on Intrahepatic Fat Content in Obese Adolescents

The human brain is nearly 60% fat by total weight and needs to be provided with certain types of fats — both saturated and unsaturated — throughout life to provide a balance of structural integrity and fluidity to its cells. Mary Dan Eades, MD, outlines the stakes of limiting dietary fat intake at various stages in life and lists the various food sources one should seek or avoid to keep the brain functioning optimally.

Read MoreWhy Your Brain Needs Fat

This 2020 mouse study indicates a diet rich in soybean oil, compared to a diet containing a similar amount of saturated fat, leads to changes in the expression of genes associated with inflammation, neuroendocrine function, and neurological signaling. These shifts suggest mechanisms by which soybean oil may have contributed to the rise in obesity and diabetes, given the dramatic increase in the oil’s consumption in the 20th century.

Read MoreDysregulation of Hypothalamic Gene Expression and the Oxytocinergic System by Soybean Oil Diets in Male Mice