Late-night snacking is a bad thing for a couple of reasons, most especially if it’s something that’s driven by compulsion or habit rather than hunger. First, it puts you at risk of gaining excess pounds because that scoop of ice cram or bag of potato chips inflates your day’s overall caloric intake. Second, late-night snacking may cause your acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) to strike, leaving you wide awake instead of spending quality hours in dreamland.
If you’re prone to snacking just before you hit the sack, fret not. That’s because this habit of yours and many others’ is not that troublesome to ditch. Here are some really smart and simple tips on turning your back on late-night snacking:
Enjoy a Satisfying Dinner
Skipping dinner just because you wish to slim down can actually sabotage your weight loss goal. When it’s time to sleep, you might end up wanting to sink your teeth into anything edible — especially something laden with fat and calories — that you chance upon in the kitchen. It’s exactly for this reason why you should never say “no” to a satisfying dinner. Make sure that it’s the well-balanced and nourishing kind to keep unwanted pounds and late-night snacking at bay.
Let Yourself Indulge in a Post-Dinner Snack
Having a healthy snack right after finishing your dinner lets your brain know that your food intake for the day has just come to an end. However, see to it that it’s something that won’t ruin your waistline. A serving of Greek yogurt, medium-sized banana or just a handful of nuts is a wonderful idea.
Engage in an Enjoyable Nighttime Activity
Can’t stop thinking about food past dinnertime? Keep your mind preoccupied with activities aside from something that involves stuffing your mouth with fancy donuts or butter-flavored microwave popcorn. It is while you are trying to drop your late-night snacking that you should welcome into your life a new hobby. Some excellent examples include reading a paperback novel or cross-stitching. Opt for something that’s both rewarding and relaxing to save your self from snacking as well as to promote a much-needed good night’s sleep.
Have a Cup of Herbal Tea
There are times when a serving of herbal tea is good enough to zap that urge to snack at bedtime. This healthy beverage contains zero calories and fat. What’s more, it offers an impressive assortment of benefits. Especially if you are prone to having insomnia, a cup of lavender, chamomile, valerian or lemon balm tea is a fantastic idea!
Drink a Glass of Water
Guzzling down a glass of water is usually enough to zap your hunger just before going to bed. Oftentimes, a lot of people cannot tell apart hunger from thirst. Also, drinking a glass of water fills your tummy, and this helps in making hunger go away — if it’s really hunger that you’re feeling.
Brush Your Teeth Prior to Hitting the Sack
Your favorite toothpaste can make any food taste terrible. This is the reason why you should reach for your toothbrush each time you feel like snacking late at night. The taste your favorite toothpaste leaves behind is very good at getting rid of your desire to raid the kitchen. As a bonus, this strategy for ditching late-night snacking can help give you a winning smile.
Have a Small Piece of Fruit
It’s not unlikely for your urge to eat past dinnertime to be caused by your longing for sugar. So before you get to the point that you can no longer ignore a slice of chocolate cake or pepperoni pizza, reach for a small piece of fruit. This will satisfy your craving for sugar in a healthy way. However, do steer clear of acidic fruits like oranges, strawberries, kiwis and grapefruit because they may leave you with a bad case of nighttime acid reflux or GERD!