Eating at night, even a snack, has long been discouraged for weight loss and healthy eating habits. Researchers are now finding that a healthy snack at night may not be so bad. If you haven’t had time to eat in the evening, or you are still hungry past eight o’clock, or you are having food cravings, you will find that there are healthy snacks to eat even at night. You still burn calories during your sleep, but your metabolism is very slow so not a lot of calories get burned. It is wise to eat snacks that are low on carbs and sugar because these turn into glucose and get stored as fat. A healthy snack at night would have protein and some fat.
Night time cravings tend to fall into two categories: sweet and salty. These cravings make us think we need to eat cookies, ice cream, and chips at night. There are other healthy snack alternatives for these cravings. It’s also important to keep nightly snack portions small. Here are some healthy snacks to eat at night.
Cottage Cheese: Cottage Cheese is a popular and healthy snack option for night eaters. It is high in protein and low in fat (low fat cottage cheese is a better option). It can be eaten with low sodium wheat crackers for a salty craving. Cottage Cheese can be mixed with fresh fruit, nuts, or some honey to conquer a sweet craving. It can even be mixed with peanut butter, but peanut butter can be high in fat.
Cereal: A bowl of cereal with skim milk or soy milk is another healthy snack. The cereal should, however, be low in sugar. Whole grain cereals are the best option for a healthy snack at night because of their high fiber content.
Fruits and Vegetables: A healthy snack no matter what time of day always includes fresh fruits or vegetables. These are high in fiber and other nutrients and their carb levels are low. Apples with peanut butter are a good combination for a healthy night snack. Dried cranberries can satisfy cravings for sweets if eaten in small amounts and mixed with nuts.
Fruit Yogurt: Fruit yogurts that are low fat are another healthy snack alternative that can satisfy a sweet tooth.
Crackers: To satisfy a salty craving, crackers with hummus dip are healthy snacks compared to chips and dip. Too much sodium at night will cause thirst.
Eating healthy snacks at night is important when trying to lose weight and to control over eating or eating junk food. Everyone’s body is different so you should consider which types of foods help you lose or maintain weight. When eating a healthy night snack, it is also important to look at what was eaten throughout the day and how many calories have been consumed. This way, a healthy snack could be limited to a certain amount so that you don’t eat more than you should at night.