Apr 5, 2021

Scot: All right. We're back with Thunder Jalili. He's our resident nutrition expert. And we're going to throw out another one of these things you might see on the internet, or some of this common sense, or, you know, something that you've believed for a long time. And we're going to find out if it's truth or if Thunder is going to debunk it on "Truth or Thunder-Debunked." Thunder, are you ready for your challenge today?

Thunder: I hope so.

Scot:: All right. Does eating at night really cause weight gains? Because there's this kind of, I think, this wisdom that you eat late at night and that's what's going to cause weight gains if you're eating like right before bed or something like that. So is that truth, or are you going to Thunder-debunk it today?

Thunder: No, I actually think there's truth to that.

Scot: What?

Thunder: Yeah.

Troy: Good, I was going to say don't tell me this is not true, because my whole takeaway from all our discussions is that this is true.

Scot: All right. Well, go ahead and explain.

Thunder: We talked in earlier podcasts about kind of the length of time that you eat, in terms of like what time do you eat in the morning when you wake up and then kind of when in the day you stop eating. And as we eat, our insulin levels go up, and that's kind of the hormone to store nutrients like fat.

So people that do that late-night snacking, you know, they've got to have something at, you know, 10:00, 11:00, 12:00 at night, maybe even later, they're kind of extending that whole time that they're putting calories into their system, and their insulin levels are high. So that's a recipe for, you know, storing fat.

So one of the ways that we would, like, advise somebody if they want to try to lose weight, you know, what are some easy steps I can think about, well, one of the easy steps is try not to eat after dinner, you know. Then you kind of have a longer time period where your body can go into that natural fasting state overnight and that helps us control our weight.

Troy: See, I'm so glad you said that, Thunder, because I have now, after all of these discussions we've had about this, I now watch the clock. I don't eat after 8:00, and sometimes it is a rush to get calories in before 8:00 p.m. I admit it's a little weird, but sometimes I am just like, okay, gotta eat, gotta eat, gotta eat. Okay, it's 8:00, I'm done.

Scot: So if you do work later, though, let's say you don't start eating until 6:00 p.m. and you shut it down at midnight. You're eating at night. Is that going to cause weight gains? Is there something about the night, or is it really just about that time of eating and not eating?

Thunder: It's not . . . there's nothing special about night. It's about the time period.

Troy: So maybe it was Thunder-debunked then. So it's nothing about the night in general. It's more just that period between when you last ate and when you eat again.

Thunder: Yeah. Oh, that's true. I guess in that sense it could be debunked. I guess I was assuming most people, you know, do have kind of a more regular schedule of having, you know, three meals, more or less, a day and then throwing snacks in there. So the night snacking, when I hear that, I assume that the person is, you know, kind of doing that normal, three-meals-a-day thing. But, yeah, to your point, if that's not you, if your first meal doesn't come until 4:00 in the afternoon, then, by all means, eat at 10:00.

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