Your body gains weight when you take in more calories than you are burning off. This is the case no matter when you eat. Going to sleep directly after you eat means your body doesn’t get a chance to burn off those calories. And, eating a big meal and then hitting the couch can be just as harmful.
Eating an early dinner allows your body time to burn off those unwanted calories before going to sleep. Late night snacks tend to be high calorie foods, such as ice cream or potato chips, so it’s more important to watch the types of foods you are eating before sleep rather than when you are eating them.
Eating before bed can also affect how well you sleep during the night. Fatty or heavy foods may cause bloating and stomach pain that can keep you tossing and turning. Also, spicy foods that cause heartburn or indigestion can keep you from getting a good night’s rest.