The fact that the correct late dinner helps to sleep soundly and feel vigorous in the morning, they know very well … kids. For young children, night cereal with milk is the same as for an adult – a cup of coffee for morning vigor. A well-known fact: the baby fed before bedtime sleeps well and soundly all night.
And the best dish for this is milk porridge. That is, a combination of long carbohydrates and protein.
And note: most babies have an excellent fast metabolism, which can’t be said about adults.
Where did the idea of ”not eating after 6 pm” or “not eating 3-4 hours before bedtime” come from? This idea has never had any direct connection with a healthy lifestyle. These recommendations are related to weight loss systems developed in the last century, and based on an erroneous theory about burning fat.
According to this theory, our body, experiencing energy hunger, begins to use the deferred fats to maintain the desired level of energy. Supposedly, that is why, going to bed hungry, we start the process of burning fat in a dream. Comfortable theory – sleep and lose weight.
And the scales in the morning, showing a plummet, were “proof” of that.
However, in reality, everything is much sadder. In a dream, in a person who has fallen asleep on an empty stomach, the metabolism slows down dramatically, fat deposits become an inviolable reserve, and the body begins to release the missing energy from the most accessible and simple source – muscle cells.
Therefore, during the night you lose not fatty tissue, but muscle. Moreover, from the very first meal, your body will begin to put off extra fat reserves for the future.
Why do nutritionists talk so much about the dangers of eating at night? Because it is difficult for us to adhere to measures, especially in food. It is easier to ban something at all, rather than trying to limit in portions and food composition.
Analyze your evening plate and see how far its contents are from the concept of healthy diet food. It’s really hard for many people to stop when they’ve got dinner. And almost no one thinks about calorie and portion sizes.
Often, dinner is complemented by a glass of wine or other alcoholic drink, or tea with sugar. And the calorie evening meal is hopelessly exceeded. Harm from such a dinner, indeed, more than good.
Therefore, dinner was declared “outlaw.” Radically, but effective.
Now you know that it is possible and even necessary to eat at night. But this does not mean that you are granted indulgence for the night zhor.
As we have said, late dinner has a number of important limitations.
As a matter of fact, a full meal can not be called a meal before bedtime either. It is rather a late snack to improve metabolism and … sound sleep.
And in order not to turn it into night gluttony, you need to follow a few simple rules.
A useful portion of food for the night should not exceed 200-250 kcal. A little more – and there will already be a bust, which will certainly be deposited on your sides.
A little less – and your body will begin to “eat” itself at night. As mentioned above, during sleep, an organism that is starved without energy will destroy not fat cells, but muscle cells, because of them it is easier to get energy.
That is, when you go to bed on an empty stomach, you are guaranteed to launch the so-called catabolic process of “drying muscles”, which has nothing to do with burning fat. Agree to lose weight due to loss of muscle tissue is a bad idea.
After all, fat (and with it the hated cellulite) will not go anywhere.
The energy value of 200-250 kcal is the reasonable amount of energy that will keep your body at rest without forcing to look for backup sources in muscle tissue. In addition, this will be enough to prevent your metabolism from slowing down.
Keep in mind that these 200-250 kcal are not a “bonus”, but should be taken into account by you in your daily rate of calories that you get with food. If you keep records of calories (and for those who want to lose weight, it is necessary), keep in mind that you have to “save” a day, these 200-250 kcal for a late snack.
Your late snack should consist of a combination of long carbohydrates and proteins. The former are important for the slow release of energy that will feed the body at night.
The second – to restore muscle cells.
It is important that the products you choose for a night snack contain the following beneficial substances (or contribute to their synthesis):
Tryptophan is a basic amino acid, the importance of which for normal sleep is difficult to overestimate. It is among the essential and is involved in the production of serotonin and melatonin.
The first is responsible for emotional well-being, the second is an important regulator of biological rhythms, that is, controls periods of sleep and wakefulness, and therefore is very important especially for people who have difficulty falling asleep. Tryptophan can not be synthesized inside the body, but can be obtained from food, especially protein.
Protein source can be both animal and vegetable origin. Hard cheese, processed cheese, shrimps, crab meat, rabbit meat, turkey meat and chicken, legumes (peas and beans) are rich in tryptophan.
In a smaller but sufficient amount of this amino acid is present in cottage cheese, oatmeal, buckwheat, millet, beef, some varieties of fish and chicken eggs. However, here lies the main catch. The fact is that the simple consumption of protein foods, even rich in tryptophan, will not lead to an automatic increase in the level of this amino acid in the brain.
In order for our brain to get the right amount of tryptophan, you need to supplement the protein diet with complex carbohydrates. The uneasy interaction of proteins and long carbohydrates gives the green corridor to tryptophan in the direction of the brain.
Melatonin is a hormone that regulates our biorhythms. It is also called the sleep hormone. For its synthesis, in addition to products containing tryptophan, you can use products that are involved in the development of its predecessor – serotonin, as well as products that are directly related to the production of melatonin in the brain.
These are bananas, sweet cherries, cherries, almonds, pine nuts, and whole wheat bread. By the way, cherries and cherries, according to some studies, are a natural source of the sleep hormone.
Oatmeal with milk and chamomile tea have a favorable effect on the production of melatonin. Actually, this set of products can be an excellent option for a late snack: oatmeal (not instant cereal) in milk – this is a mixture of long carbohydrates and proteins.
The main thing is to keep serving sizes.
This trace mineral is important not only for bones. He is involved in the synthesis of melatonin with the participation of tryptophan.
Calcium is also important in conducting nerve impulses, so lack of it can ruin your sleep.
Low-fat (but not fat-free!) Dairy products, primarily milk and yogurt, are considered the best sources of calcium before bedtime.
Magnesium helps reduce the production of stress hormone – cortisol – which prevents normal sleep at night. The lack of magnesium, by the way, often leads to the attention of the gastrocnemius muscles alone.
If you regularly reduce your legs in bed – pay attention to the level of magnesium in the blood – most likely you are missing it. In addition, magnesium is an important participant in energy metabolism.
Excellent sources of magnesium, which you can eat before bedtime: almonds, cashews, peanuts, banana and bran bread. Rich in magnesium, buckwheat and wild rice.
Potassium is one of the most important trace elements for life, without it, our cells simply stop working. This is one of the participants in the metabolism.
And at night, potassium is responsible for relieving muscle tension. Like magnesium, it prevents nightly cramps in the legs.
Banana, dried apricots, prunes, raisins, almonds, pine nuts, peanuts, cashews, walnuts, baked potatoes and tuna can be good sources of potassium before bedtime.
The choice is yours, remember only the quantity so that the useful snack does not become a useless (and even harmful) nightly gluttony. So, before you go to bed, you can eat:
Oatmeal on milk. Milk must be at least 2.5% fat. Skimmed milk is almost useless product.
Milk fat helps to absorb calcium and proteins, and is also a source of vitamins A and D. Skimmed milk is deprived of this milk fat, and hence its benefits for a night snack. In oatmeal, you can add a slice of banana or a little cherry.
Video about the dangers of low-fat products:
A boiled egg with a slice of whole grain bread. If you do not want to add calorie to this snack – remove the yolk from the egg and eat only the protein, or half a yolk.
A glass of warm milk with a small amount of dried apricots or nuts of your choice (remember the calories of the nuts and do not lean on them).
A cup of warm milk with a small oatmeal cookie.
Milk shake with banana and cherry (cherry). Please note: if you use frozen berries, they must be defrosted, as the night cocktail should not be cold. Cold food before bed is undesirable.
For greater benefit, add a little oatmeal or flax seed to your cocktail.
Whole grain toast with bran and tuna. Tuna should not be in oil, but in its own juice. Instead of tuna, you can use seafood, for example, crab meat or shrimp.
Using the information received, you can certainly create your own recipes for a good snack before bedtime. Recall that there are two main conditions: a combination of carbohydrates and proteins, as well as a calorific value of 200-250 kcal.
Tip: To get the most out of late dinner, get a little kitchen scale to weigh your portion. This purchase will quickly pay for well-being, sound sleep and welcome plumb boom on floor scales.
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