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TOPIC: No Eating After 7pm

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July 26, 2011 11:37 AM
My sister has lost 50lbs within the last year, with her 'only' change being not eating after 7pm. I can tell you for a fact that she eats less than she used to (not cramming her face) and is making a few better food choices. In the evenings we are usually winding down from our day and sometimes I get the munchies for something sweet. Not eating after 7pm could save me 500-1500 calories a week.
What do you think of not eating 3 hours before bedtime? Is a calorie a calorie no matter when it is consumed? Or does eating before turning in for the night become stored fat/energy?
  6158570
July 26, 2011 11:39 AM
I've heard many times it is best not to eat before bed, but I still do. :/ I'd like to see responses on this topic (with personal experiences) to know whether time has mattered for others.
July 26, 2011 11:41 AM
Sometimes I don't finish work till 6 and won't get home till 7ish so it is not something which I am able to do, however I try not to eat carbs if I am eating late
  636642
July 26, 2011 11:42 AM
Theoretically, yes. A calorie is a calorie. But when you eat does have effect. If you eat a clean dinner and then have a nice walk, that gives your body a chance to burn a bit off before you retire for the night. If you eat high-fat/calorie/sugar/carb items right before bed, your body is given no chance to burn and they will be stored as fat, more likely.

I try to stick to water, Crystal Light after 7.30ish.
July 26, 2011 11:43 AM
Meal timing is irrelevant.

- It doesn't matter if you eat at 7pm, 10pm, 11pm, 2am, etc.
- You also don't have to eat every 2-3 hours.
- You don't have to eat 5-6 or 7 meals a day.

People don't magically lose more weight because they don't eat after a certain time.

They lose weight because they are eating a calorie deficit under their maintenance, and they continue to lose weight through plateau's by hitting their macros every day.

Are we STILL debating this fact?
July 26, 2011 11:43 AM
Personally I don't get home from the gym until 630/7 some nights and I will eat after 7. I usually eat something full of protein (helps with the muscle repair) and I drink lots of water. I also won't eat a lot.. I try to just watch how much I put in my plate.

I'd say do whatever works best for you. Some people are really good at controlling what time they eat and not eating after a set time. For me personally it doesn't work. I like to have a nice snack some nights too.. lol :)
July 26, 2011 11:43 AM
When I was losing my wieght I would not eat 3 hrs before bed. If you go to bed with food in your stomach that's what gets burned for energy. If you go to bed on empty...stored fat gets burned. Worked for me.
  192152
July 26, 2011 11:44 AM
We eat a late dinner 6:30-730 I used to wk nightshirt & I ate "lunch" at midnight.
Ate "dinner" before bed & didn't have a wt problem
July 26, 2011 11:44 AM
When you eat makes no difference if you stay within your calorie budget. What this probably has done for you sister is to stop the mindless eating that many participate in at night. For some people if they eat at night they lose control and eat beyond their calories. I almost always eat late at night because I have the calories available. For that matter eating later can be beneficial see here http://www.leangains.com/2011/06/is-late-night-eating-better-for-fat.html
  3004823
July 26, 2011 11:44 AM
hmm makes sense .. i mean you have less time to burn them off if you eat right before bed right?

i think i'm gonna try this .. although in a slightly modified version like only fruit/veggies after 7 pm .. because right now i usually eat dinner around 9 - 10 pm .. so going cold turkey like that .. probably not the best idea. (:
  7436837
July 26, 2011 11:44 AM
I try not to eat 3 hours before bed. When i dropped 80 lbs before i stopped drinking pop, i didnt eat after dinner and I did some calisthenics in my living room with my baby at the time as a weight. lol i was also just eating healthier becasue i was breastfeeding. So that helped.
  7678507
July 26, 2011 11:44 AM
I don't eat after 7pm and I think it makes such a difference! Just works for me :)
July 26, 2011 11:44 AM
I absolutely believe this rule. For some reason, when I eat late my body likes to hold on to the cals or the weight. I'm not sure why, but this has been HUGE for me and my weight loss. If I eat late, I will see a gain on the scale the next day guaranteed.
  5038925
July 26, 2011 11:45 AM
I've heard many stories that it works, but I am a work in progress. There are times that I don't get home till after seven and I am very hungry. I'll grab something small just to ward off the growling, but doesn't always work. Let's see if I can be intentional about this one thing. I am in motion until I go to bed. I might sit down for a few minutes to read a book or write a letter, but I do try to do SOME sort of movement for the most part. It might be a few jumping jacks, squats, dips, or even sit ups. I just do something. Sure, it won't burn off ALL the calories, but I feel good with myself and know that I'm not shoving food in my face constantly.
July 26, 2011 11:45 AM
Yes I saw on Oprah a few years back that No eating after 7pm was key and then I heard it updated to no eating 3 hours before you are going to bed because everyone's life and jobs may not allow them to eat before 7pm....and so if you know you are going to bed at 11 or 12 then no snacking after 8pm or 9pm....it makes so much sense and when I consciously do it you feel so much better and so much lighter in the morning....flowerforyou
  9641001
July 26, 2011 11:45 AM
Since starting MFP, I've tried really hard to not eat after 8:00 (I get home from work at 6:30 or so and go to bed between 11:30 and midnight). I don't know that it's made a huge difference, but I sleep much better if I haven't eaten in a few hours. I've noticed that if I eat a heavy restaurant meal (like I used to) any later than 7, I wake up several times a night.
  7506094
July 26, 2011 11:45 AM
QUOTE:

Meal timing is irrelevant.

- It doesn't matter if you eat at 7pm, 10pm, 11pm, 2am, etc.
- You also don't have to eat every 2-3 hours.
- You don't have to eat 5-6 or 7 meals a day.

People don't magically lose more weight because they don't eat after a certain time.

They lose weight because they are eating a calorie deficit under their maintenance, and they continue to lose weight through plateau's by hitting their macros every day.

Are we STILL debating this fact?


I didn't think this was a debate.. just thought the OP was asking some good questions.
July 26, 2011 11:46 AM
A calorie is a calorie, no matter what time of day it is consumed. So if you eat 1200 calories a day it doesn't matter at what time of day you eat them.

However, what happens to a lot of people is that they'll eat a certain amount of calories up until dinner time and then after dinner will sit on the sofa, watch TV and eat another 1000 calories plus of junk. Cutting out those "extra" calories would certainly cause someone to lose weight.
  5282428
July 26, 2011 11:46 AM
It's individual. I don't think that it has anything to do with processing food as much as it has to do with gnoshing and munching. I've found that my magic number is 9:30 or 10, if I'm up past 10 I just want to crunch so as soon as I start feeling that way I start moving toward getting ready for bed. However, my toddler doesn't go to be until 7, so I usually eat dinner between 7:30 and 8.
July 26, 2011 11:46 AM
QUOTE:

Meal timing is irrelevant.

- It doesn't matter if you eat at 7pm, 10pm, 11pm, 2am, etc.
- You also don't have to eat every 2-3 hours.
- You don't have to eat 5-6 or 7 meals a day.

People don't magically lose more weight because they don't eat after a certain time.

They lose weight because they are eating a calorie deficit under their maintenance, and they continue to lose weight through plateau's by hitting their macros every day.

Are we STILL debating this fact?


Agreed. It doesn't matter the time that she was eating. The point and the success is that she is no longer eating that additional 500+ calories per day that she was before. She cut out a bunch of junk calories and this is why she lost weight, regardless of time of day. Now, it is true that we do tend to snack and binge eat in the late evenings....so giving yourself a policy of not eating after 7pm might be really beneficial if it stopped you from reaching for those sugary, salty snacks in the evening.
July 26, 2011 11:46 AM
Not eating after 7 may cause you to loose weight because it is a change of habits- nothing to do with the time or the fact that you might eat something before going to sleep. You will simply eat less if you cut out snacking in the evening. Its a mental strategy.
  3846611
July 26, 2011 11:46 AM
QUOTE:

My sister has lost 50lbs within the last year, with her 'only' change being not eating after 7pm. I can tell you for a fact that she eats less than she used to (not cramming her face) and is making a few better food choices. In the evenings we are usually winding down from our day and sometimes I get the munchies for something sweet. Not eating after 7pm could save me 500-1500 calories a week.
What do you think of not eating 3 hours before bedtime? Is a calorie a calorie no matter when it is consumed? Or does eating before turning in for the night become stored fat/energy?


I don't finish my pre-dinner workout until after 7:00 so for me, it wouldn't work. But I think this can be a very good idea for those that eat dinner early and then snack until bedtime.
July 26, 2011 11:47 AM
QUOTE:

Are we STILL debating this fact?


that seems quite unfair .. just because you've debated this subject before .. new people aren't allowed to? great attitude.
  7436837
July 26, 2011 11:48 AM
I've been doing it since Feb....I do make exceptions, such as every Friday....between Feb & May, I lost 30 lbs.- I also started walking, cut out white bread, & pasta....in May I found this site, lost another 17----(I don't eat after 7) unless I have a cocktail or two...then it's usually a salad (if I'm out) I'm a firm believer in it. Oh yes, this is my first post. It's a topic that I believe in.

I started in Feb at 230 lbs, & now have reached my goal of 185 lbs, going as low as 183 lbs....not really interested in losing any more....
July 26, 2011 11:49 AM
It makes no difference when you eat your daily calories. But if you find yourself over-eating after a certain time, then it is best to try and curb that by not eating at that time. Do what works for you. Just realize that eating after a certain time in and of itself is not the reason for weight gain. It's the extra calories consumed after that time for whatever reason that causes people to gain weight.
  7024918

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