Beauty

Healthy meals at all hours

FLARE's Health Editor Karen Kwan has you covered from A to Z


HEALTH Q&A: Healthy meals at all hours
FLARE’s Health Editor Karen Kwan has you covered from A to Z


 

Q: I work weird hours and get up at lunchtime. Usually I don’t get to eat dinner until eleven at night. How can I still eat healthy meals daily?
-Kiran Virk, Surrey, BC

A: “You’d be surprised how many people work ‘weird’ hours,” says Christine Hanlan, a registered holistic nutritionist based in Toronto—she works with many who are up for part or most of the night. “Regarding nutrition and healthy eating, though, the same guidelines apply no matter what your schedule is,” says Hanlan.

To start, she recommends a meal soon after you wake up to kick-start your metabolism and energy, and to keep your energy and blood sugars steady by eating every three hours (during your hours awake, that is). “If you let your blood sugars get too low you’ll feel tired mentally and physically, and for most people low blood sugars lead to cravings for the unhealthy foods and beverages that are to be avoided on a healthy diet,” says Hanlan. Eating every three hours usually translates to three meals and two to three snacks a day, adds the Toronto-based nutritionist. She suggests balanced meals and snacks that each includes protein and fruit or vegetables.

As for when to have your last meal or snack, she recommends eating your last one approximately three hours before bed. Don’t chow down on just anything, though. “To maintain a healthy body composition,” says Hanlan, “the last meal before bed should be the smallest with less emphasis on starchy carbohydrates, such as rice, pasta, breads, corn and potatoes.”

Need expert health and fitness advice? Ask Karen

 

HEALTH CORNER ADVICE
Is the Cookie Diet a good way to lose weight? Read Answer
How do oxygen facials work? Read Answer
How much water is too much? Read Answer
Is there a best time to take vitamins? Read Answer
Heart disease runs in the men in my family—do I need to be concerned? Read Answer
I want to clean out my bathroom and, in particular, the medicine cabinet. How do I know what to keep and what to toss? Read Answer
What’s healthier? Drinking a glass of orange juice, or eating an orange? Read Answer
Is my diet missing something that is causing cravings? Read Answer
What are some ways to deal with stress? Read Answer
I keep getting muscle cramps in my legs when I’m at the gym—help! Read Answer
Is it true that using tanning beds are safer than tanning in the sun? Read Answer
What outdoor activities burn the most calories? Read Answer
I’m interested in doing a detox—what should I do? Read Answer
What is the healthiest frozen meal option for an on-the-go girl? Read Answer
Are there any natural remedies for menstrual cramps? Read Answer