At home, my family doesn’t like to eat dinner past 7pm. The option to eat a full course meal at 8pm was almost magical, but I knew off the bat it wouldn’t be good for me. I have always been taught to ‘Eat for what you’re about to do. Not for what you just did.’ But now, you walk into Towers on a Monday night, and they’re serving Breakfast for Dinner. Talk about the freshman 15.
In more scientific terms, the potential energy that you have eaten will not be expended, thus causing you to gain weight. This is more likely to happen if you are not turning towards the salad bar or even cereal, versus the specials at the buffet. Christopher Colwell, a professor at UCLA, said that “Disrupting that sleep-wake cycle is bad for your health”. He noted that it can trigger type 2 diabetes and immune system issues.
In a recent article, The Today Show reported that late night eating “may disrupt learning and memory” because it effects the released hormones that tell us when to go to bed. Colwell had also mentioned that by messing up your sleep-wake cycle you are affecting the “cognitive function, especially learning and memory mechanisms.”
So. What should we be doing?
1. Pick a Special Day
I will not take Late Night away from myself. I know that setting strict limits is never an effective strategy when it comes to Kylee and food. Now, because breakfast foods are my all time favorites, I choose Monday Nights to celebrate. If I feel like I had too much that day, I might save my ‘Late Night pass’ and pick another day.
2. Don’t Pile the Plate
When it comes to my eating habits, chances are that I’m not even hungry at this time of night. However, there are some days when I have late classes. In these cases I will try to get some of my late night fix-ins, as well as something green or clean to help me feel full.
3. Get Cereal
At home when I had a night where I knew I would be up working for hours on end, I would grab a bowl of cereal to hold me over. Snacking in general has always been a problem for me, and cereal is a low calorie way to get full; especially if you’re not in the mood for fruits or vegetables.
4. Just don’t Go
I have almost zero will power, especially when I’m eating with friends. If you really feel like you shouldn’t go, and you have grown the strength against it, don’t go.
The key is to always do what works for you. Everything works in moderation. Keep that in mind, and you’ll be okay.