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Late night eating

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Old 05-10-2011, 06:07 PM   #1
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Default Late night eating

I'm a night owl, always have been, I hit my stride at about six in the afternoon (this is great for workouts) and my body clock on it's own likes to hit a rhythm of 4am-11am. Sadly, I'm a teacher and can't work like that so I'm off to bed at 1 and get up at 7.

I can eat perfectly all day without a hitch and then come eight in the evening I turn into some kind of ravening wildebeest. 8pm to 1am is a long time to sit with hunger, most people go to bed earlier and I've tried to, I just can't sleep before 1am. I need some kind of strategy for coping with late night hunger pangs. Can anyone help?
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Old 05-10-2011, 06:39 PM   #2
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I am a night eater too, and a night owl as well. I am doing a combo of South Beach and Weight Watchers and what I do is save some points for an after dinner snack. Many people say don't eat past a certain time, etc, but I would rather have a planned snack which is within my points, then binge late at night because I am bored and hungry.
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Old 05-10-2011, 06:48 PM   #3
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First, have you tried melatonin? Just a thought.

Anyway, I highly recommend saving calories for when you're awake. Also, here's what has really helped me lately, when I still want to eat. I cut up either celery or cucumber and I dip it into a calorie free ranch dressing. I think it's from Walden Farms. It's not amazing tasting, but when I eat it as a dip, it really jazzes up the boring veggies and I end up feeling full. Then, I might have some Jello sugar free cup and if I may have a Hansen's diet cream root beer. Yum!

Another suggestion is to leave the kitchen area. Tell yourself that the kitchen is closed once you've had all of your calories. Chew gum, make some air popped pop corn maybe? Brush your teeth maybe?

I hope that helps!
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Old 05-10-2011, 07:05 PM   #4
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I often eat late at night too. I sleep at about the same time as you, and have to get up in the morning because of work. Brushing my teeth early often works (though there has been about 3 times when I ignored my brushed teeth and ate anyway). I do think I'm still losing weight though, I've been losing inches all over since I started exercising February this year (it slowed down now). I think it's ok to eat at about 8pm, but if you go to bed by 1am, try not to eat anything after 10pm.
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Old 05-10-2011, 07:13 PM   #5
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try saving snacks for night time. Or try to eat fruit instead of anything high fat or high in sugar.
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:55 PM   #6
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I like night snacking too, so I save calories for it. When I'm busy during the day, I find it easier to eat lighter and then I save a fairly substantial snack (around 300-350 calories) for around 9 or 10 pm. It hasn't hindered my loss at all, it may work for you too....obviously you're up much later but can you maybe save breakfast for a bit later too? I'm up at 6am (or earlier, depending on my kids) and I don't usually eat breakfast until around 9 or 9:30...might be hard with teaching but if you get a break in the am maybe that would work.
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Old 05-10-2011, 09:15 PM   #7
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Reading between the lines a little bit...how often and hard do you work out? If you are working out hard at 6PM and not eating immediately afterward I can completely understand being ravenous all night. If shifting your work out around wouldn't work for you I would just make sure I ate something small but significant IMMEDIATELY after a work out (like have something in the locker- I usually have 2 greek yogurts). That should keep the hunger pangs from being crazy. That being said if you are actually hungry and not just eating out of FLAB (Because your are frustrated, angry, lonely or bored) I wouldn't worry too much. If you are still losing with the night eating- you probably just need the food.

The thing I would worry more about is trying to make sure I got more than 6 hours sleep a night- you poor thing!

Good luck- bless you for being a teacher.
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Old 05-10-2011, 09:49 PM   #8
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I save calories. I have a small breakfast (150-200 calories) and a 450ish calorie lunch so when I get home around 4pm I still have tons of calories left. I like it this way because I get progressively hungrier as the day drags on and I stay up late too. I've found eating only around 500-550 calories before 4 doesn't leave me hungry. I read an articlee a while ago that said eating no breakfast is bad but eating a high calorie breakfast can be bad too because people tend to eat the same amount post-breakfast regardless of the size of their breakfast.
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Old 05-11-2011, 08:54 AM   #9
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Oh, lots of things to consider, thanks for all the advice. Mainly seems to be to save calories for a later snack, which is entirely possible. I like the idea of a light breakfast and lunch popspray because I get more hungry as the day goes on and having maybe 600 calories for dinner isn't cutting it. Maybe small meals through the day.

Luckymommy, what do you mean by trying melatonin? As in a supplement to change my circadian rhythm or something else?

Gmailjunkie, I honestly hadn't considered that might be the problem, I'm working out almost every day and I tend not to eat until dinner which is an hour or so later. I'll have a go at trying that tonight. The extra sleep isn't really an issue for me, I'm one of those irritating people that can sleep for four hours and then be awake and chirpy ten minutes after getting up, I don't really get tired unless I'm sick.
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Last edited by Cleophas : 05-11-2011 at 08:56 AM. Reason: More ideas
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Old 05-11-2011, 09:03 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cleophas View Post
The extra sleep isn't really an issue for me, I'm one of those irritating people that can sleep for four hours and then be awake and chirpy ten minutes after getting up, I don't really get tired unless I'm sick.
I wish I'd gotten this gene! I haven't slept more than 4 hours in a row in over 8 months (since my youngest was born - he's not a sleeper) and I am freaking tired all. the. time. It'd be great to be able to run effectively on less sleep!
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Old 05-11-2011, 09:08 AM   #11
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Oh, I feel for you. It's pretty useful to have on holiday, it means you can get up and do whilst your travelling companions are still after their first cup of coffee
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