No food or drink after 9:30pm


Published 2022-01-02

There are surprisingly many reasons to stop eating and drinking a few hours before bed. Especially if, like me, you can rarely sleep through the whole night.

  • The closer to bedtime I drink, the more likely I am to wake up in the middle of the night with a full bladder.
  • Eating raises my body temperature by a few degrees. But falling asleep is easier if my body temperature is lower.
  • Late at night, I’m tempted to eat salty snacks, which causes dehydration, which both fills up my bladder and makes me thirsty.
  • Late at night, I’m at my most uninhibited when it comes to eating well, especially if I’ve had alcohol. So even setting aside the issue of sleeping well, I’m more likely to eat junk—and too much of it—if I’m eating late at night.
  • My understanding is that time-restricted feeding is an effective strategy for keeping body fat low, and that this isn’t just because it leads to less consumption, but because it takes time for the body to get into ketosis. For a year or two I wasn’t eating anything before noon, but I think that was a mistake, at least for me. The morning isn’t the time when I’m likely to overeat or to choose junk; the night is.

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