Should I Exercise on an Empty Stomach?

Should I Exercise on an Empty Stomach?

Staff Writer
6 minute read

Should I Exercise on an Empty Stomach?

Have you ever heard the advice to exercise on an empty stomach? If so, you may be wondering whether it's worth a try. After all, exercising can help you get in shape and reach your weight loss goals, so it makes sense that doing it on an empty stomach could help maximize those benefits.

However, some factors must be considered before exercising without eating. So let's take a closer look at why you should (or shouldn't) exercise on an empty stomach. 

Low-Intensity Exercise Is Better on an Empty Stomach

If you’re looking to burn fat while exercising on an empty stomach, low-intensity workouts like walking, light jogging, stretching, yoga, and pilates are your best bet. That's because when you don't eat before a low-intensity workout, your body will use stored fat as its primary energy source instead of relying on glucose from food. This can help you burn fat and reach your weight loss goals more efficiently.

Not only does exercising on an empty stomach burn more stored fat, but research shows that individuals who work out this way have higher Human Growth Hormone (HGH) levels. Elevated HGH levels are associated with greater potential for burning fat and growing muscle mass! 

Knowing When Not To Exercise on an Empty Stomach

It's important to note that not everyone should attempt a low-intensity workout on an empty stomach. For example, people with diabetes or high blood pressure should avoid working out without eating because their bodies may be unable to handle the additional stress of exercising without food.

It's also essential for pregnant women to eat something before working out to keep their blood sugar levels stable and ensure they have enough energy for their workouts. Finally, suppose you're planning a high-intensity activity like running or weight lifting. In that case, it's best to eat something beforehand to fuel your body and ensure you have enough energy for the duration of the workout. 

Best Time of Day To Exercise on an Empty Stomach

If you've ever wondered when the best time of day to exercise is, you're not alone. In recent years, many fitness experts have suggested that exercising on an empty stomach in the morning can provide some unique advantages. However, it is important to note that this suggestion does not apply to all forms of exercise.

Specifically, bodybuilding and weight lifting should never be done on an empty stomach—but light-weight exercises and cardio can be beneficial when done first thing in the morning. So let's take a closer look at why exercising on an empty stomach might be the right choice for you in the morning hours. 

Energy Boosting Effects 

One of the primary reasons people choose to exercise in the morning is because of its energizing effects. When you work out first thing in the morning without having eaten anything since dinner (or even breakfast) the day before, your body enters a state known as "fasted-state training."

This helps to maximize your body's use of fat stores for energy—which can lead to better results from your workout routine. Additionally, this "pre-workout fasting" has been proven to increase mental clarity and focus during your workout—helping you get better results and making workouts more enjoyable because they are easier to stay focused on! 

Weight Loss Benefits 

In addition to providing a mental and physical energy boost, exercising on an empty stomach can also help with weight loss. This is because when you work out before eating breakfast or any other meal, your body is forced to use stored fat for energy instead of relying on food from your last meal.

This means that over time, regular fasted-state training can help promote healthy weight loss while helping with overall health and wellness goals. Additionally, this type of exercise has been linked to improved insulin sensitivity—which helps regulate blood sugar levels and prevents serious health issues such as diabetes or heart disease later on down the road.  

Benefits of Working Out on an Empty Stomach in the Morning

Burn More Calories

Exercising on an empty stomach means that you have lower glucose and insulin levels in your bloodstream, which helps your body burn fat more efficiently. In addition, working out first thing in the morning can help your body burn more calories throughout the day. This makes it easier to achieve those weight loss goals you've been striving for.

Feel Energized All Day Long

When you wake up, your body is still burning calories from the night before, so when you add exercise into the mix in the morning, it helps increase energy levels throughout the day. Furthermore, regular exercise releases endorphins—the “feel-good” hormones—which can help improve mood and overall well-being. Exercising first thing in the morning can leave you feeling energized and positive all day long!

Increase Motivation and Dedication

Starting your day with a workout sets a tone of dedication and commitment to yourself that will last all day long. Additionally, this sense of accomplishment can motivate you to stick with new healthy habits like eating healthier or drinking more water throughout the day. If nothing else, you can take solace in the fact that you've already completed your workout for the day!

Exercising on an Empty Stomach in the Morning Has Numerous Benefits

  • Low-intensity exercise is better on an empty stomach because your body will use stored fat as its primary energy source instead of relying on glucose from food.

  • People with diabetes or high blood pressure should avoid working out without eating because their bodies may not be able to handle the additional stress of exercising without food. 

  • It is best to eat food before you do a high-intensity workout. This will help your body have enough energy for the duration of the workout. 

  • Exercising first thing in the morning can help your body burn more calories throughout the day. 

  • When you work out before eating breakfast, your body is forced to use stored fat for energy instead of relying on food from your last meal—which can lead to healthy weight loss over time.

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