Do you eat dinner late at night after a busy day at work? Science says you might want to bring that mealtime forward for the sake of your health!
As kids we were often told ‘Don’t eat right before you go to sleep it’s not good for you, or you’ll have nightmares!’ and while many of us may have assumed it was just nonsense from our parents, new data shows this one is far from being an old wives’ tale.
According to a new study from Sorbonne University in Paris, people who ate dinner after 9pm could have a higher risk of stroke or mini strokes, also known as transient ischemic attack (TIA).
While mini strokes don’t cause the same level of damage as a full hemorrhagic or ischemic stroke, the Mayo Clinic states that one in three people who have a TIA will go on to have a real stroke.
The study was published in the Nature Communications journal and gathered data from 100,000 people across France tracking their meal times on a weekday and weekends. The scientists paid close attention to the risk of cardiovascular disease.
The results showed that those who ate later at night, specifically after 9pm, were 28 per cent more likely to have a stroke.
Concerningly, for every hour after 8pm, the risk of stroke or mini stroke increased by 8 per cent.
“Overall, younger participants, students or unemployed, single, without a family history of CVD, current regular smokers, with higher physical activity levels, higher educational levels and lower monthly incomes tended to have later first and last meals,” the report stated.
“Additionally, compared to participants with earlier meals, participants having later meals had a higher consumption of alcohol, more episodes of binge drinking, reported later bedtimes and were more likely to have a higher variability in their meal timings across the week (defined as eating jet lag).”
The researchers claimed that since eating late increases blood and sugar pressure, there is an increased risk of damage to blood vessels – which can lead to heart attack or a stroke.
Interestingly, the data showed women were more likely to be affected by late dining hours than men, but there were more women present in the study.
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The best time to eat a big meal is actually earlier in the day like at lunch time, meanwhile, experts say we should not eat our final meal for the day past 6pm of an evening at the latest.
One US study found that you can lose up to 7kg in three months by eating all of your meals between 7am and 3pm.
A study conducted at an American university hospital has found that restricting eating to between the hours of 7am and 3pm may help to increase weight loss and lower blood pressure.
Results published in JAMA Internal Medicine found that early time-restricted eating for a period of 8 hours between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. led to more effective weight loss, blood pressure control, and mood improvement in adults with obesity when compared with a group who ate in an eating window greater than 12 hours.
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