Do you struggle with planning on when to consume your calories in a day? Are you a night eater? Is saving calories for later at night okay to do?
Yes, you can save calories for later at night or anytime later in the evening that is the best time for you, and it might actually help you reach your weight loss goal in an easier way.
Let’s talk about why.
Can I Save My Calories for Later at Night on a Calorie Deficit?
Yes, you can save your calories for later in the day if that is something that works better for you and it is what you enjoy. There are no time restraints on when you can consume your calories in a calorie deficit.
There are a few reasons why consuming your calories later could work better for you.
The first reason is that it can help you control your portion sizes better throughout the day. When you know you have calories to save for later, you are less likely to overindulge at meals earlier in the day because you know you have to save them.
Portion control is key when trying to lose weight because by eating smaller portions, you will be consuming less calories. Saving your calories for later can be a helpful way to make sure you don’t overeat during the day.
The biggest reason why saving calories for later at night might be a good idea is because it gives you something to look forward to.
This can help you stick to your diet and avoid going off plan because it helps you to stay motivated.
Saving calories for later can help keep your diet on track and help you stick to your goals.
I personally always save all of my calories for later at night (8-9PM) because this is just my preference. I have been doing this and it has always worked for me.
I like being able to come home after a long day and just unwind and relax, knowing I have ample amount of calories left to enjoy my meal or whatever it is I want to eat.
The last reason is purely based on your schedule.
If you are extremely busy during the day and don’t have much time, it can be helpful to have save your calories for nighttime or for dinner.
We lead busy lives, and it is hard to find the time to actually eat at normal times in many occupations. In some stressful occupations, many do not even have the adequate time to fit in a good lunch break, so eating later just works better.
Of course, saving your calories for later at night isn’t going to work for everyone. If you find that you are more likely to overeat at night or if you struggle with portion control, then it might not be the best strategy for you.
You may be able to overcome overindulging at night however, if you tune into your hunger cues and tap into your potential.
Listen to your body. Give your brain time to catch up. When you eat your meal, actually savor it and give your brain time to respond.
It is important to stop and really think about why you are thinking about eating more. Are you actually hungry? Most likely, if you just give yourself a little time, you will eventually feel satiated and you will realize you are not continuing to eat because you are hungry.
Avoid Overeating at Night When Saving Calories
I do want to say, if you are someone who eats more during the later hours, this is perfectly okay to do, but you must be sure to not overindulge.
If you are saving the majority of your calories for later at night or during dinner time, it is often easy to overeat because you are likely to feel more hungry because you did not snack in between.
One way to avoid overeating later in the day is to have one or two low calorie filling snacks sometime earlier in your day.
Some examples of some each low calorie and filling snacks could be:
- Cantaloupe (only about 100 calories in 12 ounces)
- 1 medium banana (about 100 calories)
- A hard boiled egg (only about 78 calories in one large egg)
- A small salad with some lean protein such as grilled chicken (about 300 calories depending on toppings)
- A cup of vegetable soup (about 100 calories in one cup)
- A slice of whole wheat toast with some sugar free jam
- Healthy granola or a granola bar
These are just a few examples, but there are endless possibilities. Just make sure whatever you choose is something that will fill you up without being too high in calories.
Remember, the key is to not overindulge. Saving your calories for later can be helpful, but if you end up overeating, it completely defeats the purpose.
These snacks are a great idea because they are easy to prepare and easy to carry along.
You can even enjoy them on the go and you do not need to take time aside to sit down and eat them. Simply take your snack with you and it can help you to feel fuller.
This way, when you are ready to enjoy your remaining calories later in the day, you will not feel ravenous and consume more calories than are in your daily allotment.
Is Saving my Calories for Later at Night Bad?
No, saving your calories for later at night or for dinner time is not bad, and will not halt your weight loss results.
In fact, as long as you are not overeating or consuming calories in a surplus, it can actually help you to lose weight or stick to your diet in an easier way because it fits your schedule and if something works better for you, you are more likely to stick to it.
By consuming your calories later at night, you are not going to automatically store the calories as fat, despite what many “experts” claim. This is simply not true.
Your body is going to utilize the calories in the same exact fashion for calories you eat at 10PM the same way as if you eat them at 4PM.
If you have a busy day and know that you won’t have time to eat during the day, then saving your calories for later can be very helpful to you.
Of course, it is important to listen to your body and eat when you are actually hungry. Saving your calories for later should not mean that you are skipping meals or eating less than you need throughout the day.
If you are feeling hungry in between meals and want to have a snack, have a snack!
You should never deprive yourself and you should never feel like you are starving.
Be sure to eat regular meals and snacks throughout the day if you have to to feel satiated and only save your calories for later if you know that you will not be overeating or eating in a surplus.
Will Eating Later at Night Cause me to Gain Weight?
Consuming your calories later at night or even past midnight is not going to cause you to gain weight, as long as you are sticking to a healthy calorie deficit.
Weight gain or weight loss is all about calories in vs. calories out, and as long as you are in a calorie deficit, you will lose weight regardless of when you eat your calories.
Of course, if you overindulge and eat more calories than you need, you will gain weight, but this can happen at any time of the day, not just at night.
If you are struggling with portion control or find that you are more likely to overeat later at night, then it might be best to avoid saving your calories for later.
However, if you have no trouble sticking to your diet and controlling your portions during the day, then saving your calories for later can actually help you lose weight or stick to your diet better
Saving your calories for later at night when sticking to a calorie deficit is perfectly fine to do and you will not mess anything up, as long as you are truly in a calorie deficit.
You can eat at anytime of the day or night and still lose weight. I have!
If you have a busy schedule, then saving your calories for later at night can actually help you lose weight or stick to your diet plan. Do what you feel most comfortable doing and what works the best for you.
You must realize however, that it is important not to overeat or consume far too many calories if you save them for later. THIS is what will undo your progress.
Be sure to stay in your calorie deficit range and if you are feeling extremely hungry, have a low calorie snack to hold you over.
When losing weight, it is important to not make it harder than it has to be. You can learn how to make losing weight easy and enjoyable.
As long as you maintain a calorie deficit over time, you will surely see results.
Related Post: Do Calories Carry Over?