Most of us have experienced the feeling of a late night craving before. It’s getting late and we’re in bed, when all of a sudden that strike of hunger hits us. We feel like we could eat so much, but it’s also so late. Late night unhealthy snacking can contribute to a number of different health issues including weight gain and diabetes. You might be thinking to yourself, how can I control these late night cravings? Well, there might be some bad habits you’ve picked up which could be contributing to those nighttime snack cravings.
However, there are steps for you to take to help curb those late night cravings. First off, it’s important to remember to drink water all throughout the day. Hydration will help keep your stomach more full. Skipping meals throughout the day can also lead to those cravings late at night because you didn’t eat enough. In preparation for times when you do get really hungry at night, you can make snacks ahead of time that are healthy. Follow along for some options you might just end up using!
Nut trail mix was one of my all time favorite snacks as a kid. Nuts like pistachios and walnuts possess the “sleep hormone” known as melatonin. Other types of nuts such as almonds and cashews contain magnesium, which is a sleep-aiding mineral.
To whip up a quick trail mix, you only need these simple ingredients:
If you don’t feel like making the trail mix on your own, you can also purchase some great options in stores of course. Check out this Great Value Omega-3 Trail Mix from Walmart for just around $8.
Popcorn is a classic snack that you just can’t go wrong with. Popcorn also offers some benefits when it comes to sleep as well. The carbs in popcorn allow the brain to access tryptophan which in turn produces serotonin. While many buttery options of popcorn are delicious and hard to resist, you should try eating your popcorn with a couple other ingredients you might like! Fresh herbs, spices, and nutritional yeast are great alternatives to add some flavor to your popcorn.
Chips and dip are such a great snack to indulge in, and healthy options can taste just as good! Hummus is the perfect healthy late night snack. Filling, delicious, and you can purchase all the ingredients from the store. Hummus is made from chickpeas, which contain tryptophan. Tryptophan is an amino acid that helps to improve sleep quality by increasing the levels of melatonin present throughout the body. B vitamins have also been linked to hummus which have been proven to help with sleep quality as well. In order for this snack option to be healthy, make sure you pick up some whole-grain crackers!
If you weren’t aware already, pineapple is another great source of melatonin. Some studies have shown that pineapple can increase your melatonin to a whopping 266%! If you are craving something sweet at night, next time consider going for some pineapple.
This late night snack option created by Tasty can be for when you want to get creative and make something from scratch. Like mentioned previously, almonds are a source of magnesium which is a sleep aiding mineral. For this recipe, you will need 2 cups of medjool dates with the pits removed, a ½ cup of roasted almonds, a ½ cup of almond butter, a ½ cup of unsweetened shredded coconut, and a small pinch of salt.
To prepare your mixture:
If you find yourself so hungry during the late night hours that just a light snack won’t hold you over, this next recipe is also from Tasty and could be right up your alley! Try out this low-carb avocado chicken salad. Even though there may not be many ingredients in this recipe particular to benefits associated with sleep, this light meal is filled with lots of healthy proteins particularly in the chicken and avocado. For this recipe, you will need a ⅔ cup Greek yogurt, 1 tablespoon lime juice, a ⅛ teaspoon chili powder, 1 avocado, (cubed and divided), 2 chicken breasts (cooked and shredded), 1 stalk celery (diced), 2 tablespoons red onion (diced), 1 pinch of kosher salt, and low carb bread.
To prepare your recipe:
Whether you choose to buy products from the store or create your own recipes, there are lots of options to help satisfy those late night cravings in the most healthy way!