Protect your heart by becoming an early bird

The early bird may get the worm, but that old adage isn't just about getting up early in the morning.

But now, new research shows that EATING on the earlier side may actually keep your heart healthy.

And that's enough reason to get the "Early Bird" special for dinner -- starting today.

According to a new study out of the U.K., the time you eat dinner actually poses a bigger risk than what is on your plate. And if you eat too close to bedtime, your healthy meal may not be so healthy anymore!

Researchers examined 700 adults with high blood pressure to see the effect of WHEN meals were eaten -- and not just WHAT was eaten -- to gauge impact on hypertension.

It turns out that having dinner within two hours of bedtime (in the study, around 7 p.m.) is actually worse for your blood pressure than getting too much salt.

You see, eating late raises your blood pressure at a time of day when your body should be winding down. After a meal, your body kicks into high gear to digest all that you ate, and your BP spikes in the process.

If you eat late, you're twice as likely to go to bed with blood pressure that fails to drop to its normal nighttime levels -- and when that happens, your chance of a heart attack skyrockets.

Now, this doesn't mean you can eat anything you want, as long as it's within the right time frame. Give up your plans for that "4th Meal." Junk food is junk, no matter when it's consumed.

But it does mean you need to pay attention to both WHAT and WHEN you eat.

In addition to leaving a few hours between mealtime and bedtime, you can also try supplementing with quercetin and magnesium, whose BP lowering benefits I've shared with you in the past

Magnesium is one of those essential minerals that we fail to absorb enough of from diet alone as we age, so although you can get it from some foods, I recommend getting a supplement from a quality maker you trust.

Magnesium is also known as the "calming mineral," so it might take the stress out of your eating and help you sleep better, too.