Weekends are Bad for our Eating Health

There’s something about the weekend.
It can be 2½ days of downtime or jam-packed with activities. Either way, it beckons us to throw caution to the wind.

7.68 million food ratings describing nutritional content were collected through the iPhone app The Eatery; the numbers were crunched and distinct eating patterns were revealed.

There are some people who use the weekend to get a jump on their diet and exercise plans with two day juice fasts marathon runs, but most of us fall into a decidedly more indulgent camp. If we get to the gym a few times and followed a healthy eating plan all week we feel like we earned our weekend splurge.

Our weekly downhill slide starts with lunch on Friday, easily the least healthy of the weekday lunches, and continues straight through to Sunday night. It actually picks up steam so that each hour of the weekend is just a little less healthy than the one that preceded. Friday dinner is a well-deserved treat after a tough week, but Saturday’s is typically the least healthy meal of the week. We sleep late on Sunday but still manage to pack our most immoderate day into fewer hours. We dine a bit  less indulgently on Sunday night, with an eye toward restarting the weekday regimen.

An extra 350 calories spread out over the weekend—just one bagel, or a few glasses of wine or beer, or an ice cream cone—and over the course of a year it adds up to 18,000 added calories; enough to pack on an extra 5 pounds.

 

infographics courtesy of Massive Health/The Eatery

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