Anyone who has ever worked odd hours, stayed out late on the weekends or simply couldn't fall asleep knows the feeling of hunger pains that strike after hours, so to speak, beyond the scope of when you'd realistically finish dinner.
Most of the time, your diet stays true to its word and you tend to skip the late night meals, even if you're out well past your supposed bedtime. A bar crawl could lead you to a 24 hour diner, meaning eggs, bacon, toast and pancakes for everyone before you finally make it home for the night.
Realistically, strapping on the feed bag is the equivalent of packing on the pounds as late night eating reeks havoc with your metabolism. Naturally, smart decision making plays an integral role in this as well.
You, by all rights at some point in your life, are going to have to eat some time beyond dinner, so the decision isn't so much whether or not to eat but rather what to eat instead. Often, late night eating gives the average person a reason to stuff their face with cheese steaks and French fries, without giving much concern to calories. Those of you who work second or third shift don't have the option of not eating if your lunch break is at 3 or 4 in the morning.
The trick to keeping the weight off includes eating small snacks that are worthwhile, like perhaps a handful of almonds, a hard boiled egg or something that you'd eat for dinner at 5 p.m. just like you would at 4 a.m. that you'd consider healthy, such as a salad with dressing on the side or some sort of grilled entree, along with plenty of vegetables and the kind of starch you don't want to skip (can you say sweet potato?).
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