Looking for some healthy late-night snacks? Keep reading to learn about the best healthy late-night snacks you can eat.
I have a problem! You see, I’ve been on a consistent diet for the past two years now. I’m talking about since we entered into quarantine in 2020 and I gained an unhealthy 30 pounds. However, losing the weight has been a challenge for me because I enjoy snacking late at night.
I do have a bedtime routine, but I tend to stay up late at night watching my favorite TV shows, whether it’s a single episode or binge-watching my favorite series, Psych, for the thousandth time. Staying up late almost always involves a trip to the refrigerator or pantry to grab a bite to eat, and most of the time, those snacks aren’t a healthy option. Unhealthy eating plus not sleeping well are a bad combo when it comes to losing weight.
Did you know that the quality of your sleep may be significantly influenced by the foods you eat? As a result, it is critical to choose late-night snacks that are not only healthy and nutritious but satisfying as well. If you’re trying to lose weight like I am, then you should try and finish dinner about three hours before bed. It helps prevent weight gain, ensures that you sleep better, reduces symptoms of acid reflux around bedtime, and helps regulate your metabolism and blood sugar levels. All of these benefits come from sleeping better.
However, if you find that you are waking up during the night feeling peckish or if you have a strong desire for a snack before bed, there are certain foods that will increase the likelihood that you will have a restful night’s sleep. Avoid eating foods that contain a lot of sugar or caffeine as much as you can. Choose foods that are high in protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates instead. These foods will help you feel full without significantly interfering with your natural sleep cycle, so feel free to enjoy them before bedtime.
There is also the option of looking for foods that are particularly rich in a particular vitamin or mineral. Magnesium, for instance, has been associated with higher levels of quality sleep. Magnesium, which can help you sleep by increasing melatonin and serotonin levels, can be found in abundance in a banana that has been spread with almond or peanut butter.
Foods that are high in tryptophan are another good option for you to consider if you are looking for something to put you back to sleep. Tryptophan is an essential amino acid for the body’s production of melatonin, the hormone that induces sleep when it’s time to turn in for the night. Vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B-12, potassium, and calcium can all contribute to an improved quality of sleep. In point of fact, this is the reason why a lot of people swear that drinking a glass of warm milk before bed helps them get a better night’s sleep! Milk is a fantastic sleep aid due to the high levels of the amino acid tryptophan as well as calcium, protein, and vitamin B-12 that it contains.
Now that you have an idea of what you should be doing, I have compiled a list of my favorite nutritious and healthy late-night snacks to eat in order to assist you in making a decision about what to eat the next time you have a craving for a snack at midnight.
Cottage cheese is an excellent late-night option because it contains tryptophan, casein protein, and calcium. All of these nutrients play an important role in helping you get a good night’s sleep. In addition, cottage cheese is low in calories and carbohydrates, making it a perfect choice for those who are trying to lose weight.
Yogurt is another dairy product that contains tryptophan as well as calcium, magnesium, and potassium, which are all nutrients that can help you sleep better. It also contains probiotics, live bacteria that have been shown to promote sleep. Choose yogurt with active cultures and no added sugar for the best results. Greek yogurt or Skyr yogurt are two of the healthiest options.
Almonds are a great source of healthy fats, fiber, magnesium, and vitamin E. All of these nutrients are essential for maintaining a healthy body and getting a good night’s sleep. Eat a small handful of almonds before bed to reap the benefits.
Chamomile tea is well-known for its ability to relax the body and promote sleep. It has an antioxidant called apigenin in it that binds to certain receptors in the brain to make you feel sleepy. Chamomile tea also has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce stress and promote a sense of calmness.
Kiwis are high in vitamins C, E, and potassium, which are all nutrients that contribute to a restful night’s sleep. In addition, kiwis contain serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps regulate sleep. Eat two kiwis about an hour before bedtime to fall asleep more easily.
Oatmeal is a complex carbohydrate that contains melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep. It also has a high fiber content, which can help you feel full and minimize nighttime cravings. The best results come from choosing oatmeal that is high in protein and low in sugar.
Walnuts are another excellent source of healthy fats, magnesium, and tryptophan. Like almonds, they can help you sleep better by reducing stress and promoting a sense of calmness. Eat a small handful of walnuts before bed to enjoy their benefits.
Tart Cherry Juice
Tart cherry juice is a natural source of melatonin, the hormone that regulates sleep. It also has antioxidants and compounds that fight inflammation, which can help reduce stress and make you feel better. Drink a glass of tart cherry juice about an hour before bedtime to fall asleep more easily.
White rice is a high-glycemic food that can cause a rapid spike in blood sugar levels. However, it can also help you sleep better by increasing levels of the hormone melatonin. Eat a small portion of white rice about an hour before bedtime to enjoy its benefits.
Herbal tea is a great way to relax before bedtime and promote sleep. Chamomile, lavender, and lemon balm tea are all particularly effective in promoting sleep. To achieve the best results, pick a caffeine-free tea.
Whole-wheat bread is a complex carbohydrate that can help you sleep better by increasing levels of the hormone melatonin. It is also a good source of fiber, which can help you feel full and minimize nighttime cravings. For the best results, choose bread that is high in fiber and low in sugar.
Pistachios are a good source of magnesium, a mineral that has been shown to promote sleep. They are also a good source of healthy fats and protein, both of which can help you feel fuller for longer. Eat a small handful of pistachios about an hour before bedtime to enjoy their benefits.
Bananas are a good source of potassium and magnesium, two minerals that have been shown to promote sleep. They also contain tryptophan, a substance that is converted into serotonin in the brain, which can make you feel sleepy. Eat a banana about an hour before bedtime to fall asleep more easily.
Fatty fish like salmon, tuna, and mackerel are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which have anti-inflammatory properties. These fatty acids can also help reduce stress and promote a sense of calmness, both of which can help you sleep better. Eat a small portion of fatty fish for dinner to enjoy its benefits.
Dark chocolate is a good source of magnesium, a mineral that has been shown to promote sleep. It also contains tryptophan, a substance that is converted into serotonin in the brain, which can make you feel sleepy. Eat a small piece of dark chocolate about an hour before bedtime to fall asleep more easily.
Apples are a good source of fiber, which can help you feel full and minimize nighttime cravings. They also contain the sleep-promoting hormone melatonin. Eat an apple about an hour before bedtime to fall asleep more easily.
There are many healthy late-night snacks that can help you sleep better. Choose snacks that are high in fiber, protein, or healthy fats and low in sugar. So the next time you’re craving a midnight snack, reach for one of these healthy options instead of unhealthy junk food. These snacks will not only satisfy your hunger, but they’ll also help you sleep better.