The Ideal Time To Eat Dinner if You Want To Lose Weight

Kendra Haire, RDN, LD, a registered dietitian and Noom coach, argues that calories, not meal times, are more important for weight reduction. 

However, weight reduction is difficult, so anything that helps is worth exploring, right? Meal time might affect how quickly you lose weight, says Long Island nutritionist Kimberly Weimann, MS, RDN.

Weimann cites a 2021 British Journal of Nutrition research that found weight reduction was greater for persons who ate dinner earlier than those who ate later. 

“Researchers hypothesize that this may be caused by the late meal influence on circadian genes, meaning late eaters are more likely to resist weight loss,” Weimann says.

Another Cell research supports this in animals. Eating late disrupted the circadian cycle, which might make weight loss tougher, according to the study.

Changing your supper hour might be challenging if you usually dine around 8 or 9 p.m. or nibble in the evening. Wiemann recommends a healthy meal to minimize late-night munching.

People can focus on meal balance with the plate technique. This means half your plate is veggies and half is lean meats and whole grains, she explains. If you're still hungry after the dinner, go back for seconds, but don't forget the veggies!

The “plate method” is also Haire's suggestion. She advises waiting 20 minutes before ordering more. She says this will help you determine if you're hungry or merely reaching for seconds. Get more if you're hungry!

Three nutritionists suggest avoiding nighttime eating after an early meal can considerably aid weight reduction. “The most common evening habit that makes it difficult to lose weight is excessive snacking before bedtime

People who are fatigued from a long day, maybe watching TV, will eat more calories than they should since they are not paying attention. Allen agrees: “Eating carb-based or sugary snacks at night will make it harder to lose weight. 

When you finish eating at night is essential, but so is what you drink. “A nightly cocktail or glass of wine before bed adds non-nutritional calories and can impact your sleep quality

All three nutritionists say, "What you eat and how many calories you consume matters most for weight loss," not when. But evidence shows that timing can help. Eating supper by 7 or 7:30 p.m. and not snacking can help you accomplish your goal faster. 

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