When you make the decision to lose weight, you probably think that counting calories and increasing your daily exercise is all you need to worry about. However, there could be another aspect to weight loss that most of us don’t think about. Not only should you plan to eat healthy meals, but you should also plan to eat those meals at times when your body can best digest and utilize the calories you are consuming.
Yes! Scientific research has found that there is a strong connection between the time meals are consumed and weight loss. If we fail to get enough sleep, our bodies may confuse being tired for being hungry which can increase cravings for unhealthy foods.
Some studies have found that not getting enough sleep at night not only increases hunger but it can also slow down the rate at which you burn calories.
Compared to people who go to bed before 12:30 a.m., those who stay up later not only average less sleep, but they are also more likely to eat unhealthy food. People that stay up later also consume a larger portion of their overall calories after 8:00 p.m. which researchers have found can lead to weight gain. So while getting enough sleep and making smart diet choices are all important for weight loss, so is the time of day that you are choosing to eat.
In one study, mice who were exposed to light at night gained more weight than mice who were kept in a dark environment at night. The light encouraged the mice to eat at times when they should be sleeping.
When the mice were fed at times they would normally eat, the mice did not gain weight.
Researchers again found that the time at which meals are consumed, along with reduced light exposure at night, could play a huge role in weight gain.
Trying to lose weight can be a frustrating process. However, by understanding what your body needs to perform at its best, you can greatly improve your chance of success. Adequate sleep, eating nutritious foods and timing your meals wisely can help you manage your weight and keep off unwanted pounds helping you stay healthy and happy.
5 Minute Dinners Nutritionists Eat by Woman’s Heath – Click on the image to enlarge.