How Damaging Is Eating Late at Night?

Eating dinner late can actually be detrimental to your health. This is a reason why as many as 40 percent of Americans suffer from acid reflux, an epidemic including symptoms like – heartburn, indigestion, postnasal drip, hoarseness, difficulty in swallowing, chronic throat clearing, coughing, and asthma.

What’s More?

Eating dinner late also contributes to obesity, as well as increase your insulin and cholesterol levels, resulting in diabetes and heart disease.

Dangerous of Eating Late at Night

Late Eating Along with Poor Diet Create Problems for Your Health

It"s not only eating late, but a poor diet as well will increase the affects to your overall health. With a huge increase in the consumption of sugar, soft drinks, fat and processed foods in your evening meals, your glucose, hormones, triglycerides and cholesterol levels are affected, leading to diabetes and cardiovascular problems.

Furthermore, if you add an after-dinner dessert or bedtime snack, these dessert calories often create acid reflux by slowing digestion and relaxing the stomach valve that normally prevents the reflux. Other popular but notoriously bad-for-nighttime-reflux foods and beverages are mints, chocolate, soft drinks and alcohol.

Other Harmful Effects of Eating Late at Night

Besides leading to diabetes and cardiovascular problems, as well as triggering acid reflux; eating late at night has some serious implications on your overall health.

    • Late-night eating affects your memory and cognitive functions negatively.

    • It also has a negative effect on sleep patterns and can make you have strange dreams.

    • Researchers have also found that eating dinner later than 8 o’clock in the evening results in high blood pressure.

    • Late dinner also makes you feel hungrier the next day. Eating late produces more glucose in your body that gives rise to a hormone called "ghrelin", responsible for triggering hunger, which ultimately leads to weight gain.

Now you know that what time you eat is as important as what you eat. Thus, it is vital to stop eating by 8 PM, or at least three hours before bed in order to prevent a few harmful health conditions. When you modify your diet with healthy food and beverage choices and start eating dinner earlier, then you will be able to achieve a healthy lifestyle.

Category: Eating Disorder


Brian Coyne

Brian Coyne, MD. Dr. Coyne is a board certified family practice physician serves fpr Family Care Centers - Fountain Valley. He completed his undergraduate degree at UCLA before earning his medical degree at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Dr. Coyne spent 6 years in the US Air Force at Andrews and Luke Air force at Andrews and Luke Air Force bases, eventually separating as a Major. He enjoys working with patients of all ages.

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