In Joomla I have properly set my timezone to Eastern Time. I am running my server in your area with xampp. I can tell that during my php.ini that my date.timezone is placed to America/New_You are able to, also Eastern Time. However, in some way, whenever anything is modified in Joomla, time that seems within the database for modified is 5 hrs ahead.
I'm not sure Joomla thorough, but this appears like it's by design:
Time Offset: Identifies time zone where the site would be to operate. Time offset is occur hrs +/- between the site location and UTC (Universal Time Matched - formerly known to as GMT (Greenwich Mean Time)). Choose time zone in the drop lower list.
Joomla appears to keep UTC dates internally, and also to calculate the main difference when outputting data. So unless of course you will find wrong dates visible within the front-finish, I believe this really is fine.
Your MySQL timezone is most likely off. Once your script calls MySQL date/time functions like NOW() it'll make use of the MySQL time. You can observe exactly what the current timezones are going to by running this question
SELECT @@global.time_zone, @@session.time_zone;.