6 positive dinner habits that can transform your health | Health - Hindustan Times

6 positive dinner habits that can transform your health

By, New Delhi
Feb 22, 2024 05:51 PM IST

An early and light dinner could be miraculous in your wellness journey, helping your control weight and blood sugar levels.

While people are usually mindful about morning nutrition, they are more likely to go wrong with the last meal of the day, which could lead to disastrous consequences. If you are someone who's struggling with high cholesterol, fatty liver, diabetes or high blood pressure, what you eat in dinner could have a huge impact on your condition. An early and light dinner as opposed to a heavy and late dinner could be miraculous in your wellness journey helping control your weight, blood sugar levels and other chronic diseases. You can also turn dinner time to your advantage by slowly chewing every bite, relishing the meal with your family and sitting in a relaxed posture, following all the principles of mindful eating. A stroll after eating will make sure you digest your meal properly and also start preparing for bedtime. (Also read: 7 amazing morning drinks to naturally lower cholesterol levels)

One major lifestyle factor affecting our metabolic system is eating meals at the wrong time. (Shutterstock)
One major lifestyle factor affecting our metabolic system is eating meals at the wrong time. (Shutterstock)

"One major lifestyle factor affecting our metabolic system is eating meals at the wrong time. The liver is one of the major metabolic factors in the human physiological system. It works closely with the circadian rhythm of the body clock and helps in glucose formation or glycogen storage. The liver works in two cycles: breaking down substances to give glucose and building up the digested substances to form glycogen stores. Eating meals at the right time supports the liver in optional functioning. Eating dinner early at sunset, wherein the inner clock sets down on a different metabolic phase, helps the digestive system function efficiently," says Dr Karthiyayini Mahadevan, M.B.B.S., DNB., PGDDN (Developmental Neurology), Head, Wellness and Wellbeing at Columbia Pacific Communities.

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Health benefits of eating dinner on time

One of the most common afflictions of the liver, which is observed with the present-day lifestyle, is fatty liver. So, the benefits of having an early dinner before sunset includes:

  • Effective digestive function.
  • Effective function of the liver in detoxification.
  • Effective bowel movement and evacuation.
  • Adequate transit time for the gut flora to get nourished.

6 positive dinner habits for health

1. Eating dinner before sunset or preferably before 7 pm: Traditional wisdom and modern science both agree that having early dinner can work wonders for your digestion and metabolism. It makes sure the body doesn't have to work extra hard during sleeping and gets the time for relaxation and rejuvenation.

2. Avoiding oily and fried food during dinner meals: Dinner should be light and easy to digest. Fat doesn’t get digested well during dinner because of less bile production, as the liver is in the anabolic phase, which is building up glycogen.

3. Hydrate well: Adequate hydration through warm soups with dinner helps aid digestion and if consumed with fibre-rich vegetables, it helps nourish the gut flora.

4. Avoid animal protein in dinner meals: Digesting animal protein takes a lot of effort and will not be supported effectively by the liver because it is in the building-up phase. This can lead to partially digested protein lingering in the gut, which, when it gets putrefied, will affect the healthy gut flora.

5. Consuming millet-based food at dinner: Millet-based dishes are rich in micronutrients and are also a great source of fibre which will nourish the gut flora. This will ensure better mental health and sound sleep too.

6. Eating with mindfulness at all times, more so for dinner: Having a nutritious and light dinner is the best way to unwind after a hectic day. It will help close the metabolic system with gratefulness for the day.

Eating mindfully at the right time, quantity and quality adds life to years.

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