There’s a great article over at Trifuel by Al Lyman highlighting some research on how your HGH levels vary if you eat less than 3 hours before going to sleep. The piece also discusses how 7-8 or MORE hours of sleep per night are required to maximize your release of HGH (Human Growth Hormone). The bottom line it seems is that maximum recovery and synthesis turning what you eat (if it’s good) into lean mass vs. fat is best when you get enough rest and don’t have a huge bowl of ice cream before bed. Shocker right 🙂
What happens when we sleep? In short, as much as 90% or more of all
[hGH] is released in 5 short pulses during deep stage REM sleep.(4)
(It’s also released after exercise). Getting adequate sleep is one of
those things that many of us routinely give lip service to, but rarely
take action on. If you regularly short-change yourself in the sleep
department, your secretion of [hGH] will be less than optimal, and the
benefits of maximal [hGH] release will be minimal at best.
This is GREAT stuff and backed up studies. This could be one of the "duh" moments for you…but in my case…I usually eat my last meal of slow digesting/low fat casein protein (like cottage cheese) at about 9:30PM. I’m going to chat with Ryan over at Nutrisport – Full Potential Training about this today. Does eating a small healthy slow digesting protein rich (low fat, minimal carb) cheat me from achieving maximum fat loss? Or is it just blood sugar spiking "fast carb rich" meals that would make a measurable difference in this area?
I’ll let you know after my workout today when I speak with him.