Eating dinner less than 2 hours before bed increases the risk of diabetes by 50%
Eating a late dinner, less than two hours before bedtime, increases the risk of diabetes by 50 percent, according to a study.
Led by the professor at the Spanish University of Murcia Marta Garaulet, in collaboration with the American University of Harvard and the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, the research indicates that eating dinner at a time very close to the time of going to bed affects to glucose tolerance, especially in those with a genetic risk variant in the melatonin receptor called MTNR1B.
This happens, indicates the study, financed by the National Institute of Health of the United States, because endogenous melatonin, which is generated during the night when sleep time approaches, is involved in the glucose alterations that occur in the metabolism.
People who also have the aforementioned genetic variable have less insulin secretion by the pancreas when they eat late due to the presence of that melatonin.
The results suggest that, in the presence of food, melatonin causes the pancreas to reduce insulin production, which causes blood sugar to rise.
According to previous studies by Garaulet, a late dinner is considered one that is made about two hours before going to bed, since the body begins to produce melatonin half an hour before sleeping.
The main novelty of the study is that it has been possible to establish the relationship between the functioning of pancreatic insulin and melatonin.