T Nation

Hunger @ Night


#1

I wake up everynight after about three hours of sleep because I am starving. I have tried eating a lot before I go to bed(cottage cheese, whey shakes, apples etc.), but it seems like no matter how much I eat I still wake up hungry. I try to avoid carbs @ night but this is the only thing that seems to help. I am wondering if there is anything I can do? Should I just go with the hunger and plan something that I can get up and eat every night? Or would a supp. like ZMA and Meletonin keep me knocked out for 7-8 hours? Any suggestions are appreciated.


One person suggested that I might be diabetic because I am hungry and thirsty ALL the time. This can't be to bad though because I have put on about 8lbs in 3 months and my strength gains have all gone up. Thanks. btw...the only supp's I am taking now are protein shakes, glutamine, Methoxy-7.


#2

You might want to try some oatmeal with cashew, almond, or walnut butter and add some nuts. Add some flax if you would like also. My personal experience for this is it takes at least 4 hours just to empty out of my stomach, so I stay satiated for quite some time.


#3

try a scoop or two of all natural peanut butter. it'll give you a few extra calories (which i always benefit from), and its pretty filling.


#4

hey paul.I read a research article called americans are chronically dehydrated.one of the main symptoms was hunger at night..you aren't really hungry you need water instead.try setting a large glass by your bed at night. eating that late the digestion process will keep you awake like how alcohol fragments sleep..also I have had great success with zma supplements,nitol is not to bad either..when you eat and lay down you are going to accumulate fat rather quickly,especially if you eat carbs that late..if you have to eat something stick with just a small amount of protein..not just throwing advice around at 225lbs at 6% body fat I have found a few things that worked through research and trial and error..good luck to you..


#5

I'm going to go ahead and totally disagree with john e. I thought the eating before you go to bed will make you fat myth died around the same time Muscle Media 2000 did. Since everyone is different, john may be the type of guy to gain fat when eating before bed, but I believe he is in the minority, and if you are starving in the middle of the night, you are probably not in the same boat. Try slowing down digestion. I wrote an article on this a few months ago for another mag. Take some enteric coated digestive enzymes wait 30min, then right before you go to sleep have a shake with something similar to the following - 60-80g protein, mostly casein (about 80% casein), 6-8g fiber, 1tbsp flax oil, 1tbsp olive oil, 6g passion flower. You could also use natural peanut butter instead of the olive oil if you dont like the taste. The fiber and the passion flower and all the fat will slow down digestion significantly, and the casein is obviously a slow protein. I bet you notice a big difference.


#6

Anyone have any idea why i yawn uncontrollably when i am really thirsty?


#7

Marc, What brand protein powder has that sort of makeup (80% casein) ?


#8

If anyone has ever read any of my posts, then you might know that I am a huge fan of string cheese. If I wake up in the middle of the night
I eat one or two string cheese, a glass of milk, a hand full of sunflower seeds or almonds, and 16 oz. of water. It basically is like a snack for a keto diet, depending on the milk. This will satisfy all cravings whether it is hunger or dehydration, plus you don't have to worry about it meesing up your diet.


#9

Eat protein and fiber for you last meal and snack. Make it a small snack if you can but keep in mind most reperation occurs while you are sleeping so eat enough for recovery. Also try not to eat too much right before bed- this could wake you about 1/2 hour later because your temperature will rise during digestion. Key is to get slow digesting high protein foods to sit in your gut through about 4-5 hours of solid deep sleep. With deep sleep you'll notice much greater gains both in size and actual power.


#10

Tatsuo, cottage cheese is 80% casein (i know its not a protein powder).

I actually use a protein powder that is 75% casein, 25% CFM whey isolate, tastes really good though but its thick as hell (which I actually like). I mix a lot of water in 2 scoops and make a chocolate pudding. Ordered it custom from the Protein Factory. REALLY REALLY good.


#11

FIBER. try for 5-10g of soluble before bed. that should sit in you a while


#12

the guy just wants to get some sleep,I don't think he wants to pull out his chemistry set every night to make some rediculous concoction..that is going to make him dread even going to bed because he has to formulate your special recipe of pills powders and oils..yea I am in the minority lets see obesity in the united states is now classified as an epidemic not a problem..so go ahead and eat right before you go to bed.I think in the post he mentions he has done this to unfavorable results..you wrote an article on this,well you know the old saying."THOSE WHO CAN'T DO..TEACH".


#13

I have the exact same problem dude. Here's the solution: take a strong antacid such as pepcid, tagamet, etc. with your last meal of the night. Eating meals before you go to bed cause a acid production, thus "eating" everything in your tummy, and leaving major hunger pangs. The antacids help.


#14

Maybe you are not eating enough during the day. This can build up your appetite slowly until you are just starving at night as you described. Try filling up as much as possible during the day, still have your shake at night, and see if this helps.


#15

John I know Marc and he has a great physique. He can eat more than most people and stay lean. The fact is if you really think one should not eat before bed you are ignorant. Eating before bed is essential for retaining or gaining LBM and getting lean (just ask JMB, TC Lauma, Tim Patterson, Chris Shrugart, Bill Roberts, ETC., ETC.) I thought every stupid newbie knew this one. He does not need a chemistry set. The protein shake can be made by Protein Factory and if he is watching calories he just needs to blend a tablespoon of flax seed oil in his shake no big deal. The idea of a slow digesting protein shake low in carbs, high in fiber & essential fatty acids is nothing crazy or radical-it's just plain SMART. If you don't want to live "the life" don't bitch when you cant hit a lean 220lbs. Now Marcs theories on: "how every man is secretly a homosexual" is something I do disagree with!!!


#16

john e, I believe I offered him advice that he has not tried yet, but paul correct me if im wrong. With a preparation time of 5min, I doubt if it would be to psychologicaly draining. I wouldn't exactly call the obesity epedimic a direct link to eating P+F pre-bedtime meals. I sure as hell wouldn't reccomend anyone to eat high GI/II carbs (or any carbs for that matter) before bed. Although I do recall Poliquin stating that one of his fast metab. competative bodybuilder clients had to eat an entire cheesecake before bed every night to keep from losing muscle, so it all depends on individual metabolisms. One other question, if 10,000 years of evolution taught my body to make my stomach growl when I'm thirsty, does that mean that when my mouth and throat are dry, and my lips are cracking, that I'm really just hungry?


#17

Although it's highly doubtful you're diabetic as you would be losing weight if this was the case but you might have a case of hyperinsulinemia/insulin resistance. I'm willing to bet if you lowered carbs down to about 20-30% of total calories with most of them coming from very low glycemic and fibrous sources you'd see a decrease in appetite. As for the night-time hunger thing personally i usually eat a lb of veggies every night before bed with a protein source. This meal definitely fills the stomach up without contributing much to total carbs or calories. I've also found the nighttime use of 5-HTP or st. johns wort puts me to sleep and kills any cravings whatsoever for food.