I often hear from people who have a lot of questions about the logistics of Medifast. A common concern is how to space out your meals so that you are getting all six of them in over the course of the day. (Yes, there are six, including your five prepackaged meals and your one “lean and green” meal that is self prepared.)
People often ask me if there are any restrictions on the timing of these meals. We all live busy lifestyles and some of us don’t even eat our dinner until the late evening. A common question that I’m asked is “how late you can eat on Medifast?” I recently heard from a woman who routinely ate her dinner at around 8:30 in the evening. As she was plotting out how she suspected Medifast was going to work for her, she realized that she would probably need to have an evening snack, which would mean that she might be eating as late as 9:30 or 10:00 at night. She wondered if this was allowed or if this would be a good idea since most diets don’t want you eating late into the evening. Many diets cut off all meals after 7:00 pm.
I’ve never read or seen any such time restrictions on Medifast. I know people who eat much later than 7:00 pm on this diet because they work nights or because their lifestyle keeps them from eating any earlier. If you have concerns about eating at a late hour, you can always try to make sure that you’re eating one of the smaller prepackaged meals as your last meal of the day rather than the larger lean and green meal. You could also take your lean and green breakfast or lunch so that you’re eating only a very small meal so late in the day. Keep in mind that the prepackaged meals only have about 90 -110 calories each. The lean and green has substantially more and is designed to be your largest meal of the day.
I realize that some people have concerns about eating late because they think that eating and then going to bed soon afterward means that they don’t have the chance to burn those calories off or that their metabolism will slow as the result of this. I’m not sure that I really believe this theory as I’ve never had anyone report poor results from a late meal on Medifast. But, if this is a concern, know that you can always stack most of your meals earlier in the day. There is nothing that says you have to eat your meals at evenly spaced increments. In a perfect world, this might happen. But this is real life. Sometimes, you just have to do the best that you can and you have to go with what your schedule and lifestyle allows.
And you have to consider that you will likely be taking in considerably less calories and carbs than what you are used to no matter when this happens. The equation of calories in and energy out remains the same no matter what hour you are talking about. So to answer the question posed, as far as I know, you can eat as late as you need to on Medifast, but if you have concerns about this, you can always tweak your schedule as you need to. There are no hard rules set in stone. No one is going to sneak up behind you and tell you that you’re eating too late.