Eating too late at night has been proven to make controlling weight harder, but sometimes a rumbling tummy just isn’t going to stop – or let you go to sleep until you eat something. There are some late-night snacks that you can turn to in these situations.
Some may even help you get a better night’s rest. It is best to wait until morning, but if you simply can’t, be sure to have some healthy options on hand.
Healthy Snacks + Better Sleep
If you’re opting to give in and fulfill your hunger, you can keep it healthy and maybe even sleep better.
Tart cherries are an excellent snack, or even drinking tart cherry juice. They contain anti-inflammatories and contain melatonin. Although they don’t have too much of the sleep-promoting hormone, studies have shown that they help people sleep longer.
Eating a small banana dipped in unsweetened almond butter can also help promote sleep. Bananas contain serotonin and your body converts some serotonin to melatonin. Pair that with almond butter and you’ll get an extra dose of melatonin on top of healthy fats, vitamin E, and magnesium, which also supports the production of melatonin.
Studies have shown Kiwi fruits to not only help you sleep longer but also fall asleep faster. They also contain serotonin and can also help you fight against carb cravings. If you want a big dose of melatonin to go with your late-night snack, go with pistachios.
Just one ounce of these nuts has about 6.5 mg of melatonin which is more than the recommended amount (0.5 – 5 mg) to promote sleep. Protein shakes are another excellent snack that won’t pack on the pounds.
If you want to get the extra help with sleep, use low-fat milk and pineapples. Both the milk and pineapples contain things that will help you get a great night’s sleep. Other healthy snacks to keep on hand are yogurt, trail mix, pumpkin seeds, or even hot cereal.
Before You Snack
If you do give in to that late-night craving, make sure it’s for a good reason. Eating because you are just bored or stressed out can definitely pack on the pounds. Be sure to limit any night snacks to 200 calories or less.
By limiting yourself to raw ingredients you can generally fill yourself up without all of the calories. Choose snacks that are quick and easy so you don’t find yourself grabbing something else. When cravings hit at night, if you planned ahead and have healthy options on hand it can make a big difference in weight control and how well you sleep!