A case of the midnight munchies, again? If your nightly routine consists of: pyjamas, Netflix and a bowl of whatever you could get your hands on * cough * popcorn * cough *, then this is for you. Research shows that eating late at night can lead to an increase in your weight. How? Well, your body is more likely to store those calories as fat instead of burning them for energy, which is the case for other meals you eat during the day. Don’t fret, we offer six clever ways to avoid eating late at night once and for all!
Recognise your cravings
Instead of reaching for a ice cream tub every night, take a moment to recognise the time your hunger pains are thriving and what type of food you’re craving. The more careful (and cautious) you are about this nasty habit you’ve developed, the easier it is to find out what the problem is and to eventually stop it.
Consume more protein
We all know protein makes you fuller for longer, so possibly your late night snacking is your body telling you that you haven’t eaten enough during the day. Make an effort to load your dinner plate with more protein, this won’t only assist your body to restore itself while you sleep, but more specifically it’ll keep your stomach fuller, so you won’t be craving anymore food late at night.
Drink herbal tea
If you asked our co-founder Georgio what his night time routine consists of, chamomile tea would be at the top of his list. A “comforting” ritual of holding a warm cup and drinking herbal tea just before bed has not only been proven to aid a better night’s sleep, but it also helps calm the mind and put your body in a relaxed state. Better yet, it’ll help wash those midnight munchies away and replace them with a healthier option of aromatic herbal tea.
Go for a walk
You’re not the first or the last person to go for a late night walk. So, when the night’s hunger pangs begin to appear, pop on those runners and walk off the temptation. A combination of fresh air and light exercise (yes, we said light - don’t work up an appetite!) won’t only assist digestion, but it helps clear the mind and prepares you for a better night’s sleep.
Get more sleep
When you’re sleep deprived, your body can respond by triggering your hunger hormone. If you’re still awake until late in the evening, the “hunger hormone” ie. ghrelin starts to increase, while leptin, the hormone that alerts your brain that you’re full, decreases. The result? Midnight munchies. Getting more sleep won’t only benefit you in a trillion different ways, but it also helps balance your hormones. Research also proves that people who sleep less are more likely to make bad choices when it comes to their diet.
And if you have to eat something, make sure it’s something healthy
You’ve gone for a walk, you’ve drunk some herbal tea, and yet, you’re still craving something to eat. If you have to eat something late night, make sure you’ve got enough healthy choices to satisfy your cravings. If you’re craving something savoury? Veggies sticks with a tiny bit of hummus. Something sweet? Try a handful of berries. As long as you’re making good, nutritious choices,a few bites won’t hurt (so much).