Don’t forget about supper while planning your diet. There are a lot of myths and rumors about eating in the evenings – they range from the time of your last meal of the day to what we should and shouldn’t eat.
Let’s start off with evaluating how important our last meal of the day actually is and what the consequences of poorly selected macronutrients could be. People who consume a lot of stodgy food, fast foods or saturated fats before going to bed may experience an array of unpleasant side effects that go along with eating such meals.
Our body has to put in a lot more work to digest stodgy food. This will prevent you from falling asleep, and what’s worse – it will keep your body in “standby mode”, which could result in incomplete regeneration and fatigue.
Having said that, one might think that in that case, it’s best not to eat before going to bed. However, that’s just as bad as eating stodgy food. Our body doesn’t recover during a workout or immediately after one – it recovers when we’re asleep. That’s why it is so important to provide our body with the proper nutrients that’ll help it recover; food that’ll allow for a good night’s sleep so that we can wake up feeling rested and full of energy. Now that we know how important supper is, let’s take a look at what we should be eating. According to the latest research, the best option is a mix of complex carbohydrates with light meat or fish and small portions of healthy fats. This combination will allow your body to fully recover after an intense day. You can also throw in some vegetables that are high in magnesium, B-group vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids to support recovery and aid in getting a good night’s rest.
And what about eating after 6 pm? It is widely believed that eating after 6 pm leads to weight gain and sleeping problems. This myth originated along with the belief that our body slows down after 6 pm, so if we eat anything after that time, we will immediately put on weight. Research shows that in the early phases of sleep, our metabolism does slow down. However, later in the REM phase, it actually speeds up to levels that are higher than those during the day – this, in effect, balances out and gives an average metabolic speed.
The best option is to eat an hour or two before going to bed.