Is Eating Late At Night Your Downfall?
We often hear – you should avoid eating late at night or after dinner. This is a good rule of thumb for those trying to lose body fat.
There are reasons WHY this ‘rule’ is suggested. There are many people who do eat after dinner or do eat before bed. I personally find unless I have a later dinner (after 7pm) – I usually get hungry after dinner/before bed (10pm). Can you relate?
So what do I do? Go to bed hungry? Well, that usually means tossing and turning. I do try and avoid eating late at night because eating puts the body in digestion-mode, and this interferes with our the precious repair (muscle synthesis, fat metabolization, hormone regulation) that occurs while we are sleeping. But tossing and turning in bed isn’t going to allow for quality sleep either.
What do I do? I will try to make the healthiest choice possible – this entails NO Fruit, NO sugar, LOW carb. What’s left? Protein & healthy fat.
What do I eat? Usually I incorporate foods such as plain greek yogurt, hummus, and edamame – Especially good late night choices due to the low sugar content which is extremely important. My favorite go-to 200 calorie snack ideas
Having knowledge of what sugar/carbohydrates does in your body (especially when inactive) it is easier to make healthier choices when you want to shed some pounds. Carbohydrates are broken down into sugar —> insulin spikes to remove the sugar from your blood stream —> insulin takes the sugar to the liver —> this sugar is now stored as fat in your liver. Since it is late at night the metabolism is slow and activity level is very low – this fat will not be burned off.
If you are serious about your goals, the best decision you can make is to greatly minimize the sugar in your diet and completely avoid it late at night.
Try a scoop of protein powder in water for optimal fat-burning results.
Choose healthy foods (high protein, low carb, no sugar, low in transfats) and keep the calorie count low (portion size small).
Most people who eat late at night will make unhealthy choices. I have summarized the results of this study. It is worth a read since you will be able to distinguish if you fall in to this category: Dinner Cut off Time revisited