If you workout at home or at 180 Fitness in Gloucester, ON, you know that it’s only half the answer to losing weight and living healthy. Not only are there questions about what you eat, but also when you eat. Can you rest and digest food properly late at night? Is eating close to bedtime an unhealthy option? While the primary focus should always be on what you eat, when you eat is also important. The amount of food you eat also makes a difference.
Your body uses activity to help digestion.
What you’re eating late at night makes a big difference. If you’re munching on an apple, the potential that it will disrupt your sleep is small. A big meal will definitely be harder to digest. There’s a reason people often go for a walk after meals. It helps their body digest the food according to several studies. It did that by helping the food move through your body faster. Staying active after a meal also helps lower blood sugar levels. How much you eat makes a big difference, not only in how well you rest, but also in how you feel the next morning.
You make different choices late at night than you do during the day.
If you’re hankering for something to eat at midnight, the chances are that you’ll reach for a salad or fruit is smaller. Most people head for the bag of chips or other quick snack available. Few take the time to make something healthy. So often night snackers are loading their bodies with empty calories and will pay for it with weight gain. It’s not about the timing, but rather about the choices made later at night.
Foods high in saturated fat content should be banned from your late night munching.
Greasy chips, fries, that left over fried chicken aren’t fare you should be eating at all, let alone at bedtime. A diet high in saturated fat, especially when eaten at bedtime, affects the quality of your sleep. It affects the amount of deep sleep you get, non rapid eye movement—NREM sleep. It’s the time that your brain helps you reinforce and evaluate the things learned during the day. It can affect your learning. There are three phases, and during each phase, the body regrows tissue, builds bones and muscle, boosts the immune system and repairs itself. While a high fat diet is bad, eating a small snack that has carbs, fat and protein can help you sleep. Find protein that is high in tryptophan.
- Heartburn is also another problem with eating late, especially big meals. It can cause acid reflux and if bad enough, burn tissues in the lungs, sinuses and nose. That leads to more than indigestion, but also coughing, sore throats, sinusitis, hoarseness and even asthma.
- Eating late can deprive you of a good night’s sleep. Sleep quality and amount makes a difference in your level of hunger. Lack of sleep increases ghrelin—hunger hormone and reduce leptin—the one that makes you feel full, so you tend to eat more.
- If you’re diabetic, eating a small snack that combines carbs with a protein or fat can help keep your blood sugar level until morning. Think apple with peanut butter.
- If you know you’re hungry before bed, be prepared. Have easily accessible food ready for that time. Applesauce with cottage cheese, a slice of avocado or chicken on whole grain toast or unsweetened Greek yogurt with blueberries are good options.
For more information, contact us today at 180 Fitness