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MikeC 08-05-2011 01:23 PM

Food, sleep and fat gain
Anyone know the background on this notion that if you sleep right after eating it immediately turns into fat? As far as I can remember this myth has been perpetuated but I don't ever recall finding out how it started.

Off Road 08-05-2011 02:12 PM

Most of the "experts" I've read says it's just a myth. Most lean bodybuilders take in some nutrition before bedtime.

Chillen 08-07-2011 10:47 AM


Originally Posted by MikeC (Post 159011)
Anyone know the background on this notion that if you sleep right after eating it immediately turns into fat? As far as I can remember this myth has been perpetuated but I don't ever recall finding out how it started.

This is a MYTH on face value.

The body is quite the complex system, and we have only figured out just a small portion of this complex system. One's metabolism is also very complex, and can vary person to person.

What we do know just by common sense, is that the body (while sleeping) does not burn that many calories, but is quite the work horse, nonetheless at this important time of the day. Speaking in terms of "average person" (with no hormal medical conditions), the body seems to work in a trend history.

For example, do you think it makes biological sense, that if one has ran deficits in calories for one week, and then suddenly one night eats 600 calories before bed (when this too is included with their calorie allotment and keeps their calorie deficit), that this will all turn to fat virtually over night?

Example 2: Or thier base calorie need (for doing nothing all day, is 1700 calories, and their running history is the same), and they decide to eat all 1700 just before bed, this will turn ALL to fat? It simply does not work this way. And, some will confuse water-weight-gain (because of the carboHYDRATES) with a body fat gain.

Speaking personally, when I lean down (and keep carbs hovering around 75 to 90--dependent on the phase period), I would eat a protein/carb meal just before bed. The carb meal usually consisted of two servings of old fashioned oats (300) with four table spoons of a fiber supplement (for swelling properties in the stomach), because my hunger was vicious in the mornings, and this stopped it in its tracks. And, I still leaned down over time. In short, its a myth, I'd worry more about one's personal calorie trend, and less on when its eaten (in this circumstance).

Off Road 08-07-2011 11:07 AM

Total calories over your needs is more important than timing. If you eat more than you need, you will gain weight. Nutrient timing may has some benefits, but calories are still king.

Fazc 08-07-2011 11:08 AM

Good post so far.

I don't think the body is as transient as broscience makes it out to be.

5kgLifter 08-07-2011 11:55 AM

I think it may have had its roots in the era when people that were trying to lose weight were persuaded not to eat late in to the evening; not that there was or is anything inherently wrong in doing so, just that this then cut their overall daily calorific intake without them realising that was occurring but then we got the spin-off about calories turning to fat overnight; the later you ate the more of a problem it would be etc.

I've eaten really big meals about 15 mins before bed, which isn't great for digestion in the long run if done for a long time, but it never reflected in my weight in any shape of fat gain. If people are doing exercise, or moving about sufficiently, to use what they take in, then the theory is that they should balance out.

I have to add that the few meals I have had very late into the evening (11pm onwards) have been very calorific and fat laden.

Chillen 08-07-2011 12:22 PM

Some tend to forget (or just simply do not know), that the body still burns calories (anywhere from 50 up to 100 per hour, dependent upon personal factors such as age, body weight, etc), though the focus of what the body actually does may shift to other things during sleep hours. These calories are not much different (in the what are used sense) then sitting at a PC all day, which is about 110 per hour (dependent on the personal factors as stated previously). It just doesn't pass the basic and fundelmental common sense test. In addition, even though things are a little slower, one also has to allow digestion time (dependent on what is eaten), and even then its not "much" less then lounging in a chair for 6 to 8 hours. Its basics, IMHO.

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