What Snacking Before Bed Does for Your Work

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Look, no shame — whatever gets you through the pandemic, right? More than a year into COVID, we've all developed habits we may or may not be totally happy with. If you find yourself snacking late at night, that's not "bad" in itself. However, it may alter how you relate to people the morning after.


Psychologists at North Carolina State University have just released a study on self-identified "unhealthy eating" right before bed. To be clear, this covers eating that study participants actively regret; it doesn't apply automatically to after-dinner snacking. That's important, since the research team also found that these participants reported both physical and psychological setbacks the next morning, ranging from headaches and GI issues to emotional strain.

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Because of these, the study also found, these participants also tended to withdraw at work the next day, whether by avoiding necessary tasks or by shirking opportunities to help fellow colleagues.


The link here is to feeling guilt about the snacking, rather than the snacking itself. Certainly COVID has been hard on our mental health, including those of us fortunate enough to work from home. Loneliness and hunger actually feel quite similar in our brains, while feeling unable to control major parts of your life is about the biggest stressor there is.

We've all got time to prepare ourselves for being back in the workplace, even knowing that work itself can be a huge drag. Get familiar with some tricks for getting through a bad brain day — and definitely let yourself off the hook for your pre-bed snacks.