Increasing meal frequency in combination with exercise mitigates postprandial triacylglycerol

Background: This study examined how manipulating meal frequency, with and without exercise, affects postprandial triacylglycerol (TAG). Methods: Fourteen sedentary men completed four 2-day trials in a non-counterbalanced random crossover order: (i) consumption of one large high fat milkshake without exercise (1-CON); (ii) consumption of two smaller high fat milkshakes without exercise (2-CON); (iii) consumption of one large high fat milkshake with exercise (1-EX); and (iv) consumption of two small high fat milkshakes with exercise (2-EX) – total energy intake was standardized across trials. On Day 1, participants rested (1-CON and 2- CON) or walked briskly for 60 minutes (1-EX and 2-EX). On Day 2, participants consumed either a single large high-fat milkshake (75% fat) (1-CON and 1-EX) for breakfast or two smaller iso-energetic milkshakes (2-CON and 2-EX) for breakfast and lunch. Plasma TAG were measured fasting and for 7 hours after breakfast. Results: Peak incremental TAG was 30% lower on 2-EX than 1-CON (P = .041; d = 0.38). Postprandial TAG increased more rapidly in the first 4 hours in 1-CON than other trials, but at 6 hours TAG was exaggerated in 2-CON compared with 1-CON. Conclusions: Increasing meal frequency after exercise, without altering overall fat intake, attenuates postprandial TAG.