Perhaps, this is one of the most popular nutrition questions out there. People are really concerned about whether or not eating too late can cause weight gain. The belief of many people is that the body’s rate of metabolism is usually slow at nights and therefore, foods that are not completely digested are converted and stored as fat. But, how true is this?
Scientific Evidence of Weight Gain
Up to date, there is no proven scientific research that shows that eating late at night causes weight gain in an average individual. Weight gain generally depends on the total calories consumed in a day and not the timing of these calories. Thus, eating late at night does not automatically translate to weight gain.
Is there any harmful consequence of eating late?
Although eating late does not cause weight gain, there are some other consequences of eating late. Generally, late-night eating can cause heartburn, bloating, and insomnia which all cause difficulty sleeping. Low hours of sleep, typically below 6 hours 30 minutes, have been shown to correlate to higher body fat percentage. This is usually because eating late causes us to be hungrier the next morning and thus consume more calories daily.
As said earlier, there is direct connection between eating late at night and weight gain. This is due to the fact that weight gain depends on the total amount of calories consumed and not the time at which those calories were consumed. However, eating late at night can cause a number of other consequences such as heartburn, bloating, and insomnia which can indirectly cause weight gain. This why it is important to watch the amount of calories you are consuming throughout the entire day, including any late-night snacks or meals.