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  • Markb

Why all the fuss over late-night eating?



Recently I have talked about changing your late-night eating habits. About Chrono-Nutrition and the distribution of food intake, meal frequency, and regularity. The duration of eating and fasting periods and the relative importance of these factors for metabolic health and chronic disease risk. And I talked about what you should and should not eat late at night.

Blah, blah, blah! What does all this mumbo jumbo mean? Why have I taken up your precious time trying to convince you to adjust a habit that you probably like just the way it is?

I bring it up because eating late at night can affect our sleep. Lack of sleep is a public health epidemic unrecognized by some and ignored by others. It is a disorder linked to 7 of the 15 leading causes of death in the U.S. and a contributing factor to preventable diseases that often are the causes of those deaths. It harms us today, tomorrow, and, most importantly, as we age.

But our lives are complicated. And sleep, or lack thereof, does not stand alone as a habit that affects our lives. Good nutrition, fitness, happiness, and a good night's sleep all contribute to the underlying foundation of our lives. We will continue to explore these contributing factors and how each affects our sleep and longevity.

But for today, I want to follow up on my Tuesday, 10/11 Daily Dose newsletter. Did you have a chance to pick your late-night dinner choices from this menu? Here are my choices. I am curious to know yours.

We all define late-night eating differently. You may have noticed I tend to eat earlier in the evening, maybe considered a late lunch by some. I did have one Negroni and some Walkers shortbread cookies for dessert. (Yes, the shortbread cookies are butter, sugar, and flour). But moderation is crucial, not austerity or personal pleasure denial.

And I took my advice: I picked the right food, ate slowly, and DID NOT OVER EAT. I enjoyed my meal and the social engagement with my dinner partner and left the table a little hungry. (To tell the truth, I sort of dislike leaving the dinner table a little hungry, but I really enjoyed the excellent night's sleep).

Let's be mindful of healthy eating and sleep and keep an eye on our late-night eating. Eat right, be social and enjoy dinner. You will get a good night's sleep and wake up refreshed, ready to conquer your world.

Your friend and follow Bluerisa traveler,

Mark Block

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