The Meal Timing Edition

For the last year, I’ve been aiming to have my last bite of food for the day, align as closely with the sunset as possible.

For the last year, I’vebeen aiming to have my last bite of food for the day, align as closely with thesunset as possible.

Here in NY, sunset iscurrently at 5:09pm.

At 33, I’m not quite at that “early birdspecial” stage of life, however, I’m pretty sure that our grandparents had thisparticular biohack figured out all along. ;)

Mind you, just a fewshort years ago, I was routinely buying giant bags of popcorn at the cornerdeli well past midnight to promptly be devoured along with the latest Netflixseries and fall asleep shortly after.

Making this onebehavioral shift has been one of the best (and quantifiable) things that I havedone for my sleep quality and by extension: my health, mood, and productivity.

Naturally, when we werein Bali, ensuring that our meal timing fell within the hours of sunrise andsunset wasn’t even a thought. It just made sense to catch the sunset along withyour last meal of the day (dinner and a “show”). Unfortunately, in New York,this kind of behavior can be downright freakish in certain circles. Throughpersonal experimentation, working with others, and mountains of emergingresearch in the area of circadian biology:

I think it’s time that webrought back the forgotten art of food timing (i.e. eating between sunrise& sunset! No late night snacks. Kitchen closed at sundown!)

 

Sleep Quality

Below you can see therather deleterious effects on my Deep Sleep scores that came as a result of 3weeks of late night holiday indulgences in December. Beyond Deep Sleep, myResting Heart Rate skyrockets as my body goes to work to digest food at hourswhen it should be resting. Heart Rate Variability tanks and REM gets all messedup. And the result, I wake up feeling unrefreshed and zombie-like. When I dofinish eating earlier in the evening, all those biomarkers reverse and I wakeup refreshed and energetic.

 

Circadian RhythmIntermittent Fasting Breakdown

Below is a TedX Talk that goesin-depth on how our chosen pattern of meal-timing (among other things) acts asa clue to our body around what time of day it is & what kind of hormones torelease as a result. This talk helps make real the damage of throwing ourbodies off from this incredibly important natural rhythm. And if you like the below, you’ll love this podcast that gets even moreinto the nitty-gritty of this topic.

 

And of course, “There’san app for that”:

The app, Zero is helpful in making this mealtime habit changestick. It works by providing a log of how close to sunset (it geotags you anddetermines pulls the exact sunset time in your location) you ate and your totalamount of time fasting (goal is 13 hours). Here is more info about it from the founder, Kevin Rose.

 

 How about you? Early eater, late night eater,or somewhere in between? As always, please send thoughts on this obsession orany of your own latest obsessions my way!