These healthy bedtime snacks keep you satiated at night, promote safe weight loss, improve sleep quality, and increase muscle synthesis.
You ate today’s last meal before 6 PM and it’s now close to midnight. With a “roaring stomach”, you sneak to the kitchen to get a snack. The only issue is that you don’t want to ruin your healthy diet.
We can all relate to late-night cravings, but did you know that restricting yourself from that late-night snack could be detrimental to your health?
For starters, being hungry makes you restless, which leads to unhealthy sleep habits.
According to studies, sleeping less than five hours per night increases your chances of gaining weight.
Who would have ever imagined that snacking later at night may actually aid weight loss?
If that isn’t much of a reason to grab a snack before bedtime, studies suggest that poor sleep stimulates hormones that make you feel hungrier and more prone to choosing an unhealthy meal for breakfast the next morning.
But does this imply that any meal can serve as a snack? Not exactly. To stimulate protein synthesis in the body and increase muscle mass, choose a snack that’s rich in proteins.
Healthy Bedtime Snacks
Here are some healthy nighttime snacks to help you shed pounds and improve your overall health:
1. Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt is ideal for snacking just before bedtime because of its high-protein content.
Besides, yogurt is high in calcium and studies show that incorporating calcium into your diet will help you fall asleep faster and get more restful sleep.
Because some yogurts have a lot of added sugar, look for a plain or reduced sugar choice. You may also add fruits, seeds, or nuts to your yogurt.
Bananas are high in potassium, which helps to relax your muscles. They also include additional natural sleep aids and don’t have a high-calorie count.
You can also add almond butter and get the perfect snack for a good night’s sleep. A banana together with an ounce of almond butter contains about a third of your daily recommended intake of magnesium.
3. Peanut Butter On Whole Grain Toast
This is a perfect snack before bedtime since whole grain bread is not only filling but also contains amino acids and proteins that make you sleep better.
It may seem counterintuitive to eat food just as your body will burn fewer calories, but it’s crucial to keep in mind that when you eat, it is just as essential as what you eat.
The unpleasant sensation of hunger might keep you up all night, disrupting your sleep.
A small snack, as long as it is low in sugar and fat, can help you manage and eventually lose weight. If you’re not sure what foods to choose, consider basic protein-rich foods that are easy to digest.
If you’re about to go to bed but need a healthy snack, pistachios, almonds, or other nuts are your best choices.
They are rich in magnesium and contain protein, making them an excellent natural sleep aid.
5. Dark Chocolate
Chocolate is generally perceived as a “harmful” treat, but dark chocolate comes with a lot of health benefits.
Dark chocolate with a cocoa content of 70 percent or above can boost serotonin synthesis and reduce blood pressure.
Oatmeal, whether hot or cold, may help your body prepare for sleep and keep you satiated throughout the night.
This bedtime snack is high in magnesium and melatonin, a sleep hormone.
Make a pot of overnight oats for a quick, easy, and healthy bedtime snack. You can also add some of the fruits mentioned above for a sweeter taste.
7. Crackers And Cheese
Healthy bedtime snacks such as crackers and cheese contain both carbohydrates and proteins, which help to keep blood sugar levels stable.
And you get only 150 calories from a serving of 4 whole-grain crackers (about 16 grams) and one stick of low-fat cheddar cheese (about 28 grams).
8. Protein Smoothie
Drinking a protein smoothie before bedtime may aid muscle regeneration, especially if you’re an athlete. Besides, it can also boost muscle synthesis, according to research.
If you’re concerned about overeating before going to sleep, consider combining your protein powder with water for a lighter snack alternative.
You can make your protein smoothie even more beneficial by combining it with an evening workout program.
Foods To Avoid Before Bed
While there are healthy bedtime snacks that promote quality sleep and weight loss, there are also other foods that can upset your stomach and keep you from falling asleep.
Here are the worst foods to eat or drink right before going to sleep:
- Sweets such as candies, cake, soda, fruit juice, chocolate, etc;
- Coffee and other energizing beverages that contain caffeine;
- Spicy foods;
- Acidic foods;
- High-carb foods such as bread, pasta, etc;
- High-fat foods.
As you can see, there are plenty of healthy bedtime snacks you can choose from without affecting your weight loss journey.
What’s even more, most of these snacks will improve your sleep quality and muscle regeneration. Thus, they’ll help you lose weight while you sleep.
Did you eat any of these healthy snacks before going to bed? Do you have any additional bedtime snack suggestions? Please share them in the comments section below!