Why eating late at night is not the best idea

People who want to lose weight are advised to avoid night snacks. Many studies show that nighttime meals are associated with an increase in body weight and an increased risk of obesity. But why this was happening was not completely clear. A new scientific work has shed light on this question.

Scientists have found that eating four hours later than usual actually changes many physiological and molecular mechanisms in the body. And this contributes to weight gain.

To conduct the study, the authors asked 16 participants to follow two different meal schedules. According to the first schedule, the volunteers ate at the beginning of the day, with the last meal being about six hours and 40 minutes before bedtime. According to the second schedule, participants skipped breakfast and had lunch instead, and their last meal was two and a half hours before bedtime.

Scientists analyzed the condition of volunteers. It turned out that a late dinner not only increased the subjective feeling of hunger the next day, but also increased the ratio of "hunger" hormones in the blood — despite the fact that all participants followed the same diet. A late meal also led to a decrease in the number of calories burned the next day. A biopsy of adipose tissue also showed that a late dinner causes molecular changes that contribute to fat accumulation.