Does Eating Late Lead to Weight Gain?

I’m sure you’ve heard about eating at night and gaining weight a million times.

“Don’t eat past 7pm!”
“Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a princess, and dinner like a pauper.
Even Megan Fox once explained how she put on the curves for the second Transformer movie, “I eat red velvet cake before I go to bed every night. And if you eat meals later, you’ll put on weight faster, so I had dinner at 10PM.”

So is this fact or fiction?
According to experts, a calorie is still a calorie and it does not matter what time you eat it. The basic rule of weight gain and weight loss still applies: If calorie consumption exceeds calorie expenditure, weight is gained. If calorie consumption is lower than calorie expenditure, weight is lost.
Thus, time isn’t necessarily a factor in putting on a few pounds.

However, it has been studied that “Late sleepers consumed more calories at dinner and after 8:00 PM, had higher fast food, full-calorie soda and lower fruit and vegetable consumption.” Late night eating tends to consist of foods that are higher in calories such as ice cream, cookies, and pizza. When people indulge in larger portions of these bedtime snacks, they are eating or drinking a larger number of calories. Weight gain then occurs when these people additionally live a sedentary lifestyle and calorie intake is greater than the  number of calories used.

For now, there isn’t much scientific proof indicating that eating at night causes weight gain. If you are watching your weight and if you do choose to eat later after dinner, don’t overindulge in the junk food. Consider the foods that you have already eaten in that day and and the physical activity that you’ve completed and ask yourself if you’re really eating to satisfy your hunger. However, if you’re grabbing a late night nutrient-dense healthy dinner at 10PM, you have no reason to worry about weight gain.

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