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After sunset

brunch Updated: Nov 02, 2013 17:00 IST
Shikha Sharma
Shikha Sharma
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

In my long experience as a nutrition expert, I have seen that 99 per cent of people have an eating pattern that is typically light during the day and very heavy at night.

There are different styles of eating; the first comprises healthy eating in the morning, followed by a light lunch. Deviations from healthy eating begin at night.

Many working women, for instance, have a unhealthy pattern of starving during the day and eating unhealthy snacks after hours.

Comfort food: Many women starve through the day and binge on sugary things at night

The impact on the body is very negative. There are several reasons for this. First, the body has a biorhythm. Our metabolic capacity is highest during daytime and it drops during the night. When one eats heavy meals at night, it hits the biorhythm at its lowest time. As a result, the body stores far more calories as fat.

Also, the body goes into repair and healing mode after the sun sets. However, whenever we overeat at night, the body’s focus shifts from regeneration to digestion. This switch is detrimental for the body.

The Binge Thing
During the day, we don’t crave comfort food. However, as the sun sets, our logical side is overtaken by the emotional side. At this time, we give in to uncontrolled eating.

A Pattern To It
Emotions that can trigger night binges:

Anger: When we are angry, we crave foods that we can crunch.

Jealousy: This may trigger your craving for anything and everything.

Anxiety: We may find ourselves drinking a lot of tea or coffee, or consuming gutka, paan, cigarettes and alcohol.

All for one: Lonely people tend to find solace in filling foods like pasta and noodles


People turn to tea, coffee, biscuits or chips.


You tend to find solace in creamy, filling foods like pasta, noodles, butter chicken, butter naan and dal.


You end up turning to sugary foods.

Ultimately, to break the vicious cycle, one has to eat more during the day. If the body gets its meal requirements then, it is less likely to falter at night. Also one must keep healthy alternatives in the house.

From HT Brunch, November 3

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