Everything Tastes Better at Night

9 Sep

There is a good reason Taco Bell and Wendy’s is open 24/7.

Because nothing tastes better than tacos at 11 PM.

Or onion rings

There actually isn’t a good reason why Taco Bell is open so late. I don’t know why. Only hefty or high people go there at three in the morning. Or late night runners. I don’t know. I don’t judge.

Besides, doesn’t Shape Magazine and Fitness totally condemn eating so late? Don’t they all claim that eating so close to bed will make you fat?

Well, I must be three hundred pounds. 

Wait. I’m not (five more pounds to go though!) and I eat a huge meal before I sleep.

I get home rather late on days that I work. I’m off at 9 PM  and I get home around 9:25ish. That’s when I have the rest of my dinner.

Some nights I’m hungrier than others, but I know I have to eat something because leading up to that time, I burned a lot of calories. I’m always hungrier at night too. I’m never hungry in the morning or noon time. I probably eat 230ish calories for breakfast because I’m not hungry nor do I like to eat that much before I run then I come home to have lunch. I don’t eat a lot because, again, I’m not hungry. As the day progresses, my hunger returns and I eat.

Except when I’m at work, I can’t just stop to eat. I wait until a break where I turn into a vacuum and eat all my snacks and veggies. 

By the time I get home at 9:30, I’m usually hungry for a good dinner.

Last night I came home to:

  • Two garden burger patties (200 calories)
  • Vegan baked beans
  • 1/3 bagel
  • 100 calorie tuna packet
  • Coconut ice cream
  • Bran muffin
  • Oatmeal cookie
  • Half of Mamma Chia drink
  • Pickle

I finished off my night with watching some TV before going to bed at 11. 

According to most health experts/magazines/wanna be’s, I’m unhealthy. I didn’t let my food digest. I sat on the sofa afterwards so it didn’t burn off. I’m a fatass, I suppose.

Food eaten after 8 PM just turns into fat! Duh.

Yet, I didn’t have enough calories in for that day so should I just starve myself? Am I wrong for eating a billion calories before bed? 

Livestrong.com says, “It is a dietary myth that food eaten just prior to bedtime turns into fat. According to the Mayo Clinic, weight management comes down to calories consumed and calories expended. When you consume more calories than your burn on a regular basis, you’re likely to gain weight. Conversely, if you burn more calories through exercise and regular, physical activity, you’re likely to lose weight. Keep in mind, however, that consuming enough calories in order to meet nutritional needs is important and cutting calories too severely can actually slow the metabolism.”

The thing is, I’m not eating five tacos from Taco Bell. I’m not chugging down sea salted fries or  a Big Mac. I’m eating protein. Yeah, there is some ice cream in there, but so what. I’m still eating breakfast the next morning.

“The type of food you consume makes a difference as well, as nutritious foods, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains, tend to provide greater satiation in addition to nutrients, thus promoting healthy weight management. A calorie is indeed a calorie, but considering the sources most of your calories stem from can impact your weight and wellness.”

I understand some people have trouble with night-time eating. They’re bored or just tired so they grab a bag of potato chips.

I, on the other hand, grabs a tuna packet. But I’m the freak who should be, like, 400 pounds. I’m the unhealthy one for eating an hour before bed. I’m not swimming. I’m sleeping. So what?

It is important to realize that during sleep you burn a lot of calories and it is an opportunity missed, if taking off fat is the goal, to load up your digestive track with food before you hop in the sack. You are basically maintaining your fat stores doing that. Your body not only burns calories keeping your brain going at night and engaging in other autonomic functions, but it is repairing muscle and other tissue damage that you may have inflicted on it during your workouts/day. You have to train your body to draw on fat stores at night. (source.)

I don’t believe much from Fitness or Shape magazine anyway anymore. That was a lot of any’s. These are the same magazines that tell you to eat 1,200 – 1,500 calories a day. No wonder why their readers are late night eating. They’re hungry! And damnnn. Their workouts with five-pound dumbbells ae probably killer.

Take it from me, you can eat late at night. Your body doesn’t know what time of the day it is. Your body just knows it is hungry and wants more fuel since it hasn’t been getting enough.

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21 Responses to “Everything Tastes Better at Night”

  1. Alexandra September 9, 2011 at 1:31 PM #

    A-freakin-men sister! I get so sick of those stupid magazines saying crap like that–like you said, your body doesn’t know the time of day, it just wants fooood.
    Every night I have a 300-400 calorie snack literally like 5 minutes before I go to bed– am I a lard? No sir, I’m just happy not to be a starving animal all night long haha 😉
    Hope you have a great weekend my friend, and cheers to healthy late night snackin!

  2. Jan September 9, 2011 at 1:38 PM #

    You have to train your body to draw on fat stores at night.

    Seriously? How exactly is that supposed to work? Meditation? Magic? Starvation? Starvation might actually work. Well, you start to draw on your fat stores all the time. So I guess nights are included. The rest seems to come from the same people who think that loosing weight by eating lots of broccoli (just not too much at a time) is a really good idea. And by the way: Where do these strange ideas come from? Don’t eat before going to bed? Is that something like the weather turns bad if you don’t finish your plate?

    Oh, sorry I just stumbled over this blog and as nice as running is all this obsessing about the latest fad from a magazine written by bored people seemed weird. Shutting up now.

    • lifttorun September 9, 2011 at 2:14 PM #

      Yeah, I don’t know. Hah. Some of the thoughts/info I just read from bodybuilding or livestrong.com.

  3. Carrie (Moves 'N Munchies) September 9, 2011 at 2:07 PM #

    loved this! is totally BS. i eat a big meal before bed!

  4. andrea September 9, 2011 at 2:30 PM #

    Amen! I eat progressively more of my calories as the day goes on. Sometimes I eat like 1000 cals within hours of bedtime. Never has it affected my weight. (Unless I eat more calories than I expend but that’s a given)

  5. Julia September 9, 2011 at 2:48 PM #

    I eat so much at like 9/10 pm. Its when Im hungry!! Those magazines are filled with such crap…its like they want people to starve themselves

  6. Hollie @ Lolzthatswim(andRun) September 9, 2011 at 3:32 PM #

    Yes. I eat a lot after 9pm. I am forever just hungry all the time. Your body does not care what time you eat as long as it does!

  7. Amanda @ Running with Spoons September 9, 2011 at 4:02 PM #

    I hate the “don’t eat after 8 PM rule”. Actually, I hate all of the eating rules, because all of them are complete BS. I always eat a big snack before I go to sleep otherwise I can’t make it through the night without being woken up by an angry stomach.

  8. sarah September 9, 2011 at 5:17 PM #

    Aaaaymen!
    1500 cals a day is just crazy bonkers- I probs eat more than that in the evening( on top of all the other food iv eaten that day) right before bed. I actually totally think food does taste better at night- and going to bed with a food baby is worth it for all the yummies. I do eat nutritional stuff though.
    Ill join you in the should -be- 400 pounds -but-is – totally-not club.
    Xxx

  9. Cecily @ rerunrunning.com September 9, 2011 at 6:10 PM #

    Loved all of this! What an excellent summation of just how important it is to LISTEN to your body. Are you hungry? Good, eat. Are not hungry? Good, don’t eat. And sleep when you’re tired too. What a breakthrough! Poor Shape magazine. This will be headline stuff for them someday (maybe).

    • lifttorun September 9, 2011 at 6:24 PM #

      And sometimes you totally have to eat when you’re not hungry if you know you haven’t had enough that day. It’s all good though. 😉

  10. Jessica @ rerunrunning September 9, 2011 at 6:16 PM #

    My favorite time to eat is right before bed. I’m glad you’ve debunked this myth for me, because I used to feel slightly guilty. Still not guilty enough not to do it… 🙂 Thanks!

  11. Tara September 9, 2011 at 6:42 PM #

    I’ve been eating like you do for at least the past 2 years, since I picked up running basically. And look who actually had to gain weight. I’ve had times where I consume over half my calories at night because I’m just not hungry during the day. I’m not overweight yet nor have I ever been close in the span of time that I’ve eaten like this. “no night eating” is definitely more for people who just eat because they’re bored or have some sort of emotional attachment, and people confuse it with storing extra fat. the only reason you’d do that is if you ate more than you needed.

  12. Isabelle@cheesymiteapples September 9, 2011 at 11:51 PM #

    I used to be scared about late night snacking. But these last few days since I’ve scaled back a bit on training I’m finding myself really hungry before bed!

  13. Ashley September 10, 2011 at 12:50 AM #

    PREACH IT!!! I loved this post soo much!! You have no idea how much i needed to read this today. Ever since i started running, im not hungry for so much during the day. But at night…watch out 🙂

  14. Katherine September 10, 2011 at 4:33 AM #

    that has been disproven so many times!! i always snack before bed, otherwise i wake up in the middle of the night with a rumbly tummy in the middle of the night. all that stuff is garbage. listen to your body, not a stupid theory ! amen, girl.

  15. Kat @ a dash of fairydust September 10, 2011 at 9:33 AM #

    THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS POST!!!!
    During the day,I often am quite busy. And when I’m busy,I don’t feel that hungry PLUS I hate to eat in a hurry… So I get hungry in the evening.
    Although I knew I should listen to my body and stuff,most of the time,I hesitated to do so & went to bed hungry very often lately… The result was that I could never sleep without waking up several times because of my rumbly tummy. :/
    Knowing not to be the only one who eats a lot in the evening makes it much easier for me to overcome my fear. Hopefully,I’ll be able to sleep better then,soon…

  16. healthninja September 10, 2011 at 1:48 PM #

    good point here.
    I get so angry with fitness magazines from time to time. Young girls read them and think they should not eat after 5 pm and they get healthy and skinny or just avoid any carb passing your way and turn into grumpie little curb-cravers with muscle- and performance-loss. there are so many myths about healthy eating and weightloss/gain, that those magazines should probably be banned or have an obvious warning on the top page. something like: “Watch out! I am offering a heap of crackbrained advice decorated with pretty photoshoped pictures. Following can interminably damage your metabolism!”

  17. Jenna @ back exercises for men September 12, 2011 at 6:33 AM #

    Well, I always vomit (for some odd reason) if I eat anything late at night. I don’t know its a common issue with you too.
    I always feel better taste in the morning.

  18. allieksmith September 12, 2011 at 8:11 AM #

    YEAH! Amen 🙂 I always eat before bed as welll!

  19. jessiepeace September 12, 2011 at 9:49 AM #

    I alway eat at night i cannot help it but i tryed not to and i got up earlyer and was super hungry in the morning. Its probably better for us of wr never but wheb hunger strikwles ot tastes so goood.
    Jessie.

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