Late night eating

Does it matter how late we eat? Is it ok to go to bed with a full stomach?

Many people believe that late night eating contributes to weight gain.  This is actually true but not for the reason we have been led to believe.  It is not the deposition of fat from the food eaten just before bed.  It has to do with depleting energy stores before replenishing again.

Studies about food eating patterns have been done on mice.  Those that were fed during an eight hour window of their wake time stayed lean and didn’t develop  health issues.  Those allowed the same food at anytime gained weight and started having health problems.

The body may benefit from the break it gets from over night fasting.  Constant eating may lead to metabolic issues and health consequences like weight gain. It takes about six to eight hours to metabolize glcogen stores.  Glycolgen is energy stored in muscles.  After that you start to shift to fat burning.  If you replenish your glycogen by eating every eight hours your body doesn’t get a chance to use the fat stores as fuel.

There are other benefits to over night fasting including:

1.  Normalizing insulin sensitivity which wards off diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic diseases.

2.  Normalizes ghrelin levels. (Hunger hormone)

3.  Lowers triglycerides

4.  Promotes the release of human growth hormone.

5.  Reduces chronic inflammation

6.  Lessons free radical damage.

Eating after dinner will go against weight loss and health goals.  Try to limit your meals to day time.  Make this change gradualy as a drastic change in your eating time line may be too much of an adjustment making it difficult to maintain.  If this is new for you try limiting your meals to between 8 AM and 6 PM.  Watch the changes take place.