What Actually Happens When You Eat After 6pm?!
SPOILER ALERT: Your body doesn’t store food as fat just because you ate it at a certain time!
This is a very common misconception, so don’t worry if you thought that eating certain foods at night time will be stored as fat. It kind of makes sense, at night time we aren’t as active as we are during the day so it makes sense that what we eat is being stored. But good news Mama’s, our bodies are a lot smarter than that!
Our bodies only store food as fat if we eat more than we consume! In other words, it doesn’t matter if you eat carbohydrates at night or any type of food! Carbohydrates actually help us sleep better as it makes an amino acid called tryptophan that causes sleepiness. Tryptophan is also a precursor to the sleep-inducing compounds serotonin and melatonin which are important compounds for sleep.
If you are eating at maintenance calories or below (depending on your goals), it doesn’t matter what time you consume your meals as your body will burn it for energy either way!
Studies have actually shown that while we sleep our bodies burn energy at the same rate as during the day. This is especially true if you have exercised during the duration of that day, as your metabolic rate is higher which means you are burning more energy than if you hadn’t exercised!
If however, you suffer from heartburn or acid reflux try not to eat too close to bedtime as lying down soon after a meal can cause acid reflux.
In conclusion, let’s put this myth to bed once and for all (no pun intended). Do whatever works best for you and your lifestyle!