How to stop midnight snacking – for good

If you have a tendency to go straight for the chocolate and chips after dinner, here are some tips to pick up healthier habits after dark.

During the day, you’re a nutrition superstar. Your meals are balanced and wholesome. You resist cravings. You opt for a green juice over a coffee. And then comes midnight, and all that great willpower disappears. There’s nothing wrong with a little late-night snacking, especially if you tend to eat dinner earlier and have some healthy nibbles on hand. However, choosing processed or inflammatory options is counterproductive to your health goals. Here are some of our tips to pick up healthier habits after dark.

Snack during the day

One of the things we want to avoid with late-night snacking is raising blood sugar too close to sleep. However, this isn’t as much of a concern during the day. Grab a piece of fruit, some nuts, or a smoothie to kick the 3 PM slump. This will also help ensure you’re not desperate for food by dinnertime, meaning you won’t overeat or eat too quickly. Doing the latter can often make your digestion beat your brain — it takes your mind about 15 to 20 minutes to realise you’re full, so you get a snack even if your body doesn’t need it.

Practice mindful eating

Not realising when we’re full can be a common issue, especially because we might not always be paying attention to what we’re eating — and how much of it we’re consuming. This is especially true for those midnight bites. Do you reach for them when you’re unwinding with TV? Finishing up work for the night? Scrolling through Instagram? Recognise when you snack and work to reverse those habits, whether that’s by doing nighttime yoga, reading instead of watching TV, or just having a stash of healthy options on hands.

Stock up on good options

If you eat dinner early or your blood sugar really struggles in the hours between dinner and sleeping, make sure that you have healthy snack alternatives on hand. Our current obsession? ‘Nice’ cream. Chop up a banana, place it in the freezer for a few hours, blend it, and pop it back into the freezer until it reaches the consistency of ice cream. To make it a bit creamier, add a dash of your go-to non-dairy milk and for some extra razzle-dazzle, garnish with nuts, nut butter, or fruit.

For something savoury, make your own kale chips or blend up a green juice that’s heavy on the veggies (pro tip: ingredients like watercress and celery can help reduce anxiety to make it easier to fall asleep).

If you’re really pining for some chocolate, make sure it’s dark, organic, and as unprocessed as possible. And remember: enjoy it in moderation.

Create a routine

Creating a bedtime routine can be great for your sleep, but it can also be an effective tool for managing your diet. Commit to doing a yoga or meditation practice every night. Take baths. Read a book. Brew yourself a cup of tea — ginger, turmeric, and cloves is a delicious, immune-boosting, anti-inflammatory favourite of ours. Go for a stroll. Pick something that brings you joy and helps set you up for a positive, energised morning.

At Soulara, our plant-powered meals are designed to keep you satisfied while feeling happy, healthy, sexy, and strong.

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Published: 05/12/17

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