Eating Late and Snoring? Try the Four Hour Fast

Diet & Lifestyle, Solutions

Eating Late and Snoring? Try the Four Hour Fast

“Many of my patients find that eating earlier alleviates their sleep apnea.” [1]

A lot of snoring fixes require perseverance before you start to see results. The SnoreLab-recommended “Four Hour Fast” is a free and easy life hack that can produce instant benefits for your snoring.

Put simply, we strongly recommend not eating anything at least 4 hours before you go to bed. It’s working for lots of SnoreLab users and could very easily work for you too.

Why should I try it?

Plenty of sources recommend not eating too late, but there is very little research into the effect of a large, late meal on snoring. However, anecdotally we have heard from our users and many other people that having a small evening meal with plenty of time to digest can drastically reduce their snoring.

“For people who would like to control their snoring, eat your dinner early – at least 4 hours before bedtime. Keep the dinner light and use the app to monitor the difference. You will be amazed!”

“SnoreLab is great to help me understand what influences my snoring: late food, fatty food, dehydration etc.”

“I’m a petite female side-sleeper who doesn’t smoke and rarely drinks alcohol, yet my highest snore score was 92 (16% epic, 19% loud!). With SnoreLab I was able to quantify my snoring and quickly narrow down the causes. My lowest scores (2 & 3) were nights I inadvertently skipped dinner! That 92? I ate a greasy burger and fries that day. I’ve been adjusting my diet and now my snore score is consistently under a 10 rather than 60-90.”

How eating late can contribute to snoring

1. Pressure and shortness of breath

It is thought that having full belly can exert pressure on your chest and negatively affect your breathing. This is because your lungs and diaphragm share space with your stomach and small intestine.

When your stomach is very full, your diaphragm has less room to expand and contract. This explains the shortness of breath people often feel after a particularly heavy meal.

If this shortness of breath lingers until bedtime, the strained breathing can cause snoring.

2. Acid Reflux

Reflux literally means “backflow” and this is when acid from the stomach spills back up into the oesophagus and even the airway.

Reflux is a common symptom of eating late. The stomach takes several hours to empty properly. Lying down too soon after eating can allow the contents of the stomach to come back up with the help of gravity.

As well as impacting the oesophagus, there is growing evidence to support the notion of reflux affecting the airway [2][3][4] which can exacerbate snoring.

This “airway reflux” [4] can directly irritate and inflame the tissue responsible for snoring.

Acid reflux can also contribute to postnasal drip. This is simply excess mucus buildup at the back of the nose and throat. Severe postnasal drip can result in a sore throat and coughing which in turn contribute to worsened snoring [5].

Coughing is strongly linked to snoring as both are a result of airway irritation and inflammation [6]. Reflux is implicated in many people who experience chronic coughing and snoring as a result [7].

Reflux has also been associated with other upper airway issues such as hoarseness, difficulty swallowing and chronic throat clearing [1].

3. Certain ingredients can worsen snoring

Another thing to consider is the foods you eat and if they can impact upon your snoring.
Whilst the research into specific foods and their impact on snoring is sparse at best, there’s plenty of evidence regarding reflux and the foods to avoid.

High-fat foods slow digestion and relax the valve that separates the stomach and oesophagus. Acidic foods like including certain fruits and spicy ingredients are known to irritate the throat lining which can worsen snoring directly and indirectly through acid reflux [3].

Remember to use SnoreLab’s notes tool to keep track of certain foods if you suspect they play a role in your snoring.

In the long term

Whilst we are confident that many SnoreLab users will see instant results through eating an earlier evening meal, there is also plenty of long-term benefit to this eating pattern.

Most people agree that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but many of those people continue to skip it. Eating less in the evening can be a great way to encourage eating more in the morning. This so-called “front-loading” of your diet can be an effective weight loss technique too.

Some sources speculate that this is due to enhanced fat burning or shifting metabolisms, but it is more likely to simply be an effective way of regulating your appetite and staying within calorific limits.


SnoreLab’s SMART strategy for effective weight loss in snorers

Have a look


Lifestyle is known to influence snoring. Increasingly, we are seeing the evidence that small life hacks can make big and important changes to our nightly noises. The Four Hour Fast is free, simple and can produce instant results for your snoring.

If you have a late evening meal, remember to select the “Ate late” factor in SnoreLab and see how it effects your score. Conversely, try the Four Hour Fast and you could very easily see your Snore Score cut drastically!

Let us know how you get on via, Facebook or Twitter.

Zero Added Sugar Diet for Snoring – Richard’s Story

Diet & Lifestyle, User Stories

Snoring Diet Success Story – Richard

This story comes from Richard who contacted us about his amazing success with the No Added Sugar Challenge. Ask anyone about snoring and they’ll tell you that losing weight it a great way to reduce it – but this story isn’t about weight loss. We were stunned to hear that snoring can effectively stop straight away with some healthy adjustments to what you eat …

My name is Rich, and I am a Snorer. It took me a long time to be able to say that but last year I participated in a sleep study that categorically confirmed I am what they call a “heavy snorer.”  

The doctor said my snoring was most likely the result of enlarged tissue in my airway due to ageing, lack of fitness, drinking alcohol before bed, weight gain, and some medications.

Thankfully, my wife Shannon chose to wear ear plugs instead of leaving me! I tried a number of things to reduce my snoring, but had little success.

In 2017 I found SnoreLab. I finally found out how bad I snored and I began to try several remedies including exercise, diet, mouthpieces, and pillows designed to help snoring. Things weren’t really improving that much.  

My Snore Scores averaged above 50 and I ranked in the 86th percentile of SnoreLab users. Or as my wife put it, my snoring was horrible.  

Then came the seven day No Added Sugar Challenge (NASC) and the week that just may have saved a life.

I thought I’d give the challenge a go after hearing about the success others had. I don’t normally eat or drink a lot of sugary foods, but when I do, I go all in. But it’s only seven days – challenge accepted.  

Completing the challenge with Shannon made it so much easier. We eat fairly well most of the time so it wasn’t too difficult to stay on track. Nonetheless, we were very surprised about how much of the food we typically eat has added sugar.  This led to a couple of heated discussions, “There is no way bacon has sugar!” Turns out it does.

We planned and prepared some food for the week: hard boiled eggs, roasted almonds, cheese sticks, veggies and fruits. Shannon was very creative with dinners. On day one she made a chicken and black bean salad with homemade avocado dressing – it was absolutely delicious. Day two we had stuffed peppers with a no sugar added sauce that was a little pricey but very good.  

We made it through the challenge, and had a little fun with it along the way. I noticed that I initially had to resist getting up and looking for a snack, but by the end of the week I didn’t feel the urge so much. I lost about six pounds and Shannon and I both seemed to be getting better sleep.

But what does sugar have to do with sleep? And what about the snoring?

The day before the challenge my Snore Score was 77. After one day of the challenge, my Snore Score dropped to 1. I thought it was an anomaly but the scores over the next few nights proved otherwise:

Day 2:  3
Day 3:  8  
Day 4:  9  
Day 5:  8  
Day 6:  6  
Day 7:  4

My Snore Score average went from above 50 to single digits. I couldn’t believe it. While I have not discussed this with my doctor yet, I am convinced that added sugar intake is a source of the tissue inflammation and likely the cause of my snoring.

The week after the challenge, I tested this theory by eating foods that I would normally eat. For lunch I had an Italian meat sandwich with condiments and salad with dressing. For dinner: pizza, wings, veggies with blue cheese dressing. I had a significant increase in snoring and scored 35 – and then an immediate decrease as I went back to paying closer attention to added sugar intake.

I continue to monitor my snoring and control my sugar intake. By reducing sugar, my snore score continues to average about 8. I have been getting quality sleep and Shannon has even given up the ear plugs.

Snoring’s link with bodyweight is well studied and well understood. Less appreciated is the importance of what and when you eat. We are hearing more and more stories from people who make these adjustments to their diet and almost instantly see reductions in their snoring: from reducing sugar, the paleo diet, to eating very small evening meals.

Be sure to check out SnoreLab’s SMART strategy for weight loss and a healthy lifestyle – a great way to kick start your journey towards silencing your snoring.

All of our user stories are genuine accounts from SnoreLab users. If you’d care to share your experience about using SnoreLab, we’d love to hear from you. Please contact us on or get in touch via Facebook or Twitter.



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