I've heard it too many times before, and I'm sure I'll hear it again, but this is getting beyond old. On top of that, people are really hurting their bodies and their chances for nutritional success by following this simple age old rule as if it came straight from "the book" itself.
It seems to be that most people are accepting the idea of eating frequently for good health and fat loss, which is great. But, for some reason, this stupid 7pm rule is still sticking around. Some people don't necessarily follow this rule but most people are still not getting food after they eat supper (or w/e you call your evening meal).
We know now that eating every 2-4 hours (and I like every 2-3 hours even better) is the best way to eat for health, fat loss, and for building muscle (funny how those all work together huh?). The theories make good sense, and it has been proven over and over again. (theories would include topics of metabolism, nutrient absorption, insulin sensitivity and other hormone regulations, along with others.)
Okay, so how does that connect with the 7pm rule? Well, lets do it the easy way.
Example: Lets say you eat at 6:30pm, go to bed at 10pm, wake up the next morning at 6pm and get breakfast right away. You are supposed to eat every 2-4 hours, but you have just gone 11 hours without food. In that eleven hours your body's metabolism slowed to a screeching halt, used up all its glycogen stores and then started breaking down your muscle for energy to stay alive. You also just told your body to get ready for the next time you decide to starve and so it responds by turning more of your food into fat to get ready for next time.
All that is just the short term. You also lost some muscle mass, which means your metabolism is lower and you are less able to deal with your normal calorie intake, in turn you eat more calories than you need and guess what, you got skinnier while you also gained fat. Not so cool. (Ever seen an overweight guy with hardly any muscle on his arms? That could be you if you like.)
What's the anwer?
Eat before you go to bed. Yes I know, I said it. Crazy huh? You are right, there is plenty of crazy here. Not saying I'm Galileo or anything close, or that I came up with these theories of eating, but you get what I'm saying. Everyone thought Galileo was crazy too.
What you eat is important. I am not saying eat pasta before bed, or any other form of high glycemic carbohydrate either. You cannot do that, it will be very very bad. You should be eating complete protein and vegetables that is as simple as I can get. Do this within an hour of sleep.
High glycemic carbs good before workouts, but BAD before bed
Complete protein and vegetables great before bed.
In the end all forms of 7pm rule suck. Try eating before bed for a week, I think you will like it, and I know your body will love it.
Till next time.
"Life is 10% what happens to you, 90% how you respond to it."
PS. By the way, for those with acid reflux issues, I know people that have had good success with alka seltzer and other forms similar. Good luck.