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Late Night Eating

Exercise is great but you can NOT out run bad eating habits. Part 2


In part 1 of this series, the importance of knowing your feeding window was discussed. This article will explain how to use the information you collected about your feeding window to improve your health and reduce weight.


Step one.

Look at the total time you spend eating in a day from your first bite of food or beverage after waking to your last bite or beverage before going to bed. If your window for eating is greater than 12 hours the first step is to reduce your eating window. Ideally you should strive to keep your eating window between 8 to 12 hours (active feeding stage).

EATING WINDOW

Eating beyond 12 hours

Weight gain

Health Issues

8am(first meal)_____12 Hour interval ____8pm(last meal)___3 hours___11pm Bedtime

No food after 12 hours

Body regenerates

Body Repairs

Burns fat

Step 2

See how much time has passed from the time you woke up, to the first bite of food or drink other than water. After waking try to wait an hour before you start eating. Shortly after waking go outside and spend a minimum of 10-15 minutes in natural light. Sunlight will signal your body’s natural circadian rhythm and facilitate your body's internal clock system.


Step 3

Look at how many hours passed from the last bite of food you ate until the time you went to bed. Ideally you should allow at least 3 hours. This will maximize your body’s ability to metabolize what you ate and drank through the night. This prevents your body from going into storage mode through the night. Storage mode adds to your fat cells and over time weight gain. If given enough time through the night your body will burn fat. (This will be covered in greater detail in the next article)

An Example

The last bite of food or beverage will influence when you start your first meal. For example, if you are in a 12-hour eating window and go to bed at 11 pm you will stop eating by 8 pm. Therefore, your last first bite of food would be at 8 am giving you a 12-hour eating window.

In order keep your body’s natural rhythm, in the scenario outlined above 8 pm should be the latest you are eating or drinking excluding water. Your body is releasing hormones to begin shutting down and by ingesting food you are increasing hormonal signals to use food. This will disrupt not only digestion and how food is used but the body’s natural state which is in a healing and regenerative mode through the night.


By adjusting your feeding window and not eating late into the night (inactive feeding phase) you will align your food intake with your body’s circadian rhythm. Your circadian rhythm is your body’s internal clock and is responsible for many functions including the timing of hormones being released. Poor eating habits from a long eating window will disrupt this and can lead to weight gain and a host of health issues.


Part 3 will dive deeper into how your feeding window works


Ref:

1.Satchin Panda PhD: The Circadian Code

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