Calorie Counters - Eating before bed?

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01-23-2010, 09:30 PM
O.K., So I eat 1200 cals a day. I always save some to have a snack before bed. About 1 hour before. I snack on anything from a tomato with salt, string cheese, or a 1 calorie back of "yogurt" covered pretzels and a small glass of fat free milk. I always go to bed full.

Is this ok????? I always feel guilty. But I hate going to bed if I am hungry.

And yes, I am staying within my calorie budget. :)

01-23-2010, 09:36 PM
Yup its fine to eat before bed

01-23-2010, 09:40 PM
I eat before bed all the time. If Im hungry and have calories to spare I eat. I tried the whole not eating a few hours before bed and it really didnt make any difference at all. Some people follow that rule but Ive found that it doesnt affect me or my weight loss.

Good luck! =)

01-23-2010, 10:29 PM
curious ..why would it matter what time you ate, as long as you burn more than you take in you wil loose. i dont understand why the time on the clock would make a difference

01-23-2010, 11:11 PM
nitenurse, there has always been controversy over this issue but you are correct, if you are staying in deficit time does not matter. many experts and doctors have the concern that people burn the least amount of calories in sleep while the metabolism slows. however, if there are no excess calories then it will burn fat instead of burning off some of the excess calories and converting the rest into fat. oy i ate late last night AND went over my calorie limit...for me there is no worse thing than waking up FULL. i hate that. but i like going to bed content, sleeping a full night and waking up hungry for breakfast.

01-24-2010, 12:52 AM
Thanks guys! I don't feel guilty now! haha :)

01-24-2010, 12:59 AM
I agree with other posters, that you are fine if you are staying in your overall limit.

I think this stems from the tendency of the majority of folks to eat a big unhealthy dinner at 6 and then be hungry again and pig out on junk food at 10 on your way to bed. This is obviously a problem, and can also be a problem for "dieters" who eat too little for dinner and are so hungry in the evenings that they go to town on junk.

Let's go with the concept that your metabolism slows a lot while you sleep so food you eat before bed gets converted into fat. If that is true (and I think that statement is probably 90% false 10% true) then this corresponding statement would also be true. When you didn't have that 250 calories (as an example) earlier in the day when your metabolism was higher than you were burning more fat earlier in the day. So is there a net difference? I don't think so.

I do agree with the concept that some people struggle with binging on unhealthy foods before bed and this is an issue for a separate reason.

01-24-2010, 01:16 AM
I agree - it doesn't matter, in terms of weight loss or nutrition, what you eat before bed v. what you ate earlier in the day as long as you stay at/under your limit. My daughter is tube fed and gets 60-65% of her nutrition at night while she's sleeping. That doesn't make her gain weight any faster than other kiddos her age and is, infact, much smaller than average.

I will say, however, that eating right before you go to bed isn't the best for your digestive system. While you're sleeping, your gastric motility slows down... which means it takes longer for your stomach to digest the food that you ate. This leads to cramping, bloating, and gas. If none of those are a problem for you and you've been eating that way all your life, then keep doing what you're used to. But if you DO have issues with that when you wake up (or in the middle of the night), you may want to curb your habits. ;)

01-25-2010, 12:20 PM
When you eat at night, there's more of a chance for your digestive system to pull all of the calories out of the contents of your stomach, as you are digesting it all more slowly as you sleep than if you were awake.

I eat a bedtime snack of rykrisp crackers, laughing cow wedges, and fresh fruit and an ounce or two of turkey or ham, along with a pot of green tea. I do that every night, and looking foward to it (I watch tv for an hour with my husband in bed while we snack - it's his favorite time of the day!) keeps me many a day from overeating at other times, becuase I know I want my calories left for bedtime.

I've lost about 2 lbs a week since November, 23 lbs down!

If I start to plateau at some point then maybe I'll get rid of or scale back the nighttime eating, but for now I see no reason.

01-25-2010, 12:27 PM
I personally hate eating before bed but I've also read that you shouldn't eat 2-3 hours before bed because it is bad for your digestive system. Not anything to do with weight loss itself.