Having trouble maintaining a healthy weight, or breaking that weight-loss goal you’re just a few pounds away from?
If your diet and exercise are on point, that weight loss problem could be the result of your evening habits. Some common nighttime rituals before bed can lead to sneaky weight gain. You may not notice them right away, but they’ll eventually add up.
So if you’re continuing to gain weight for no apparent reason, consider these common nighttime habits, and how they may be affecting your diet and hormones.
You’re eating too close to bedtime
Whether it’s dinner or light snacking, studies show that eating close to bedtime can increase your caloric intake, leading to easy weight gain.
A 2017 study from The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that eating during the rise of melatonin levels – which is when you’re about to catch some Z’s – can lead to increased body fat.
‘Your body is designed to function best during the daytime hours when you are most active. Therefore, you don’t metabolise food as efficiently at night,’ explains Meghan Donnelly, MS, RDN.
Try eating your last meal three to four hours before bedtime to prevent weight gain.
You’re stressed out or anxious
Leave those work emails for the next day.
A 2018 study from Obesity Reviews showed that stress, poor sleep, and weight gain are all linked with one another.
‘Find ways to decompress in the evening, such as going for a walk with a friend, drinking a warm cup of tea or taking a hot bath. Finding ways to manage stress may help you control your weight,’ says Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, and author of Healthy Instant Pot Cookbook.
You’re bored out of your mind
‘Lots of folks confuse boredom for hunger, and this can lead to a late-night calorie overload. Keep yourself busy with a good book or play a game with the kiddos,’ says White.
This will help you avoid roaming through the kitchen and grabbing snacks you don’t really want, which will obviously contribute to those unwanted added pounds.
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