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Eating late at night and weight gain: facts and fiction

Nov. 5, 2018 13:01

Hardly up to date professional dietitians and nutritionists when consulting average people not trying to build competitive shape would make them stop eating at the given time.

It is one of the biggest misconceptions which became very common among amateur weight shedders that calories consumed after 6 p.m. (myths talk about hours starting from 6-8 p.m.) would result inevitably in your fat storage and food eaten thus would rot in the stomach.

This fiction was quite widely spread due to a simple explanation of these processes. According to them, all activity in our bodies are slowed down after 6 p.m. consequently it is wrong to eat at night moreover, it has to be forbidden to eat late at night because you may cause irreparable damage to your health with such actions.

That's why in order to bust this common misconception there were two studies: "Contribution of evening macronutrient intake to total caloric intake and body mass index" published in Appetite and "Role of sleep timing in caloric intake and BMI" from Obesity (Silver Spring).

Both studies in human indicated that eating time is not so important but how much you eat matters.

Despite the fact that several animal studies have linked night eating to increased weight, on the other side studies that involved humans show that unrelated to what time of day you eat eating beyond your personal daily calorie needs leads to weight gain.

It isn't necessary to track time when you want to fill your stomach. We all have different Circadian Rhythms thus we wake up at different hours.

It is incorrect to make a person fast if she has only woken up at 6 p.m.

In addition, all of us have various types of appetite. Some prefer eating immediately, and a lot after bed whereas other prefer waiting till their bodies signal them to start taking calories.

Remember, our metabolism isn't dying at 6 p.m. like our brains, we are still able to think at night. The same happens with our stomachs. People just tend to eat more at night as far as the work time is over and after 6 o'clock it's time to eat and relax.

From the side of physiology, calories consumed at night don’t count for more. Consider taking a higher-calorie breakfast which will help you to eat less in the daytime and of course late at night.

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