Eating dinner early could be better for your health

Busy New Yorkers may be accustomed to eating later in the evening but a new study by Harvard Medical school researchers shows eating dinner as early as 5 p.m. is a better option for overall health.

Researchers say they found eating late at night or right before bedtime has been linked to an increased risk of obesity.

Dave Goodside is the owner of The Beach Cafe on the Upper East Side.  He says most of his customers like to have the main meal of the day well after 5 p.m.

"I will say 7:30 is the most popular time," Goodside says.

Get breaking news alerts in the free FOX5NY News app!  |  Sign up for FOX 5 email newsletters

Researchers found those who had the last meal of the day at 5 p.m. were less likely to store fat.

Lisa Moskovitz is a registered dietitian and the author of The Core Three Healthy Eating Plan.

"If you're eating really late at night and maybe there's only an hour in between the time you finish dinner and the time you go to sleep, it can eventually cause some issues. It can disrupt digestion, it can disrupt sleep, it can potentially lead to higher insulin levels, which is a hormone that does regulate fat, storage and hunger the next day," Moskovitz says. "You do want to give your body, say, two, three, even up to 4 hours of a  break time before you go to bed, just so that you have that time to digest all the food that you're eating and so that you could also ensure quality sleep hunger the next day."

So while most of us may be at work at 5 p.m. and not home in time to have dinner, health professionals suggest eating the last meal of the day at least a few hours before you go to sleep doing so may even make you feel more rested the next day.