Food, a word that fascinates us at any time of the day. Everything in our life is somewhere or the other related to it. Be it hunger or be it any festive occasion, our search ends at food! But it’s time we realize that “a calorie is a calorie no matter when you consume it” is a myth, research shows that a calorie consumed late at night creates more havoc than we think.
Most of the time we find ourselves in the kitchen late at night, devouring some sweet, salty, or carb-rich treat even though we aren’t hungry.
Studies reveal that food consumption during late night-anywhere from after dinner to outside a person’s typical sleep/wake cycle, is not digested properly. This indigestion leads to the creation of harmful metabolites in the blood which causes cellular damage.
There are various disadvantages to taking heavy meals at night, to mention a few:
1) Acid reflux
2) Intermittent fasting
3) Throws our biological clock off-kilter.
Acid reflux mostly identified as horrible heartburns is a very common phenomenon that we think is easy to diagnose and treat, but a slight ignorance and it can lead to esophageal cancer. According to Dr. Koufman, “the single most intervention is to eliminate late eating”. Acid reflux also damages the enamel lining of the teeth thus rendering it vulnerable to plaque formation, gum diseases. Acid reflux also causes halitosis (bad breath). Now, who’d like to smile that million-dollar smile with those set of pearls all yellowed up and stinky? Nobody, right? So, adhere to the above-mentioned habits and you’re good to floor people with your grin.
To avoid acid reflex we need to understand the causes:
– Eating large meals at night.
– Snacking close to bedtime.
– Smoking and drinking.
– Consuming heavily processed food.
Our body has its own mechanism and it produces various digestive enzymes and acids that help in digestion and functioning of all the enzymes and acids is regulated by the biological clock. Consuming heavy meals at late night disturbs the biological clock, affecting the stomach and other digestive organs as they are responsible for the secretion of enzymes necessary for the digestion of food.
Intermittent fasting is a process in which we restrict our bodies to consume food at particular times, like twice or once in a day.
But the lifestyle that we have nowadays doesn’t permit us to do intermittent fasting. Like those late-night shifts or early morning meeting when you just couldn’t grab a meal. This process works miracle for weight loss when done properly or else leads to massive weight gain.
Late-night snacks trigger the acids at the time when we have to be sleeping which in turn causes our body to store the food rather than digesting it.
Weight gain is a common problem of today’s generation and the most important reason behind it is the consumption of processed food as well the time at which we eat it.
Scientifically our body takes three hours to digest food and if in between a meal we consume some more calories it adds up to the storage i.e. fat.
Weight gain leads to obesity which in itself is a major disease. Ask me why?
Obesity should be taken very seriously since not only does it hinder a person in his day to day chores but it also invites several other diseases like atherosclerosis (deposition of fat in capillaries), increased chances of myocardial infarction, and most of all diabetes.
In a recent study, conducted on rats it was observed that a major weight gain was observed in rats who consumed food at late night compared to those rats who consumed food at their regular time.
To avoid late-night food consumption there are various methods:-
1. Dinner time should be at least three hours before sleeping time.
2. Sleeping in darkness, to avoid disturbances due to lights.
4. Early rising habits.
5. Having a proper breakfast.
With this, we come to an end to our advisories but hope to bring an end to our unhealthy habits and help you achieve a healthier and hassle-free lifestyle. Bon Appetite.