There’s something about late time cravings that everyone can relate to. As soon we change into sweats, there they are. And if you can’t resist them, you might end up tossing-and-turning having uneasy dreams and feeling distracted in the morning. Falling asleep on an empty stomach might do the same to you - hunger has the power to keep us awake at night.

When your sleep is disturbed like that, your chances to gain weight go up. In that case eating light healthy meals before bed will actually do you good. There are no bedtime snacks for weight loss per se, but there are foods that won’t leave you feeling bloated all night long. Also, they can improve the quality of your sleep, thus helping the slim-down process.

Why it can be hard to control late-night binges

woman eating pizza at night

It may be so because you got in late or for some reason haven’t eaten enough during the day. So, we eat late just by force of habit. Our cravings can be also linked to a variety of eating disorders or hormonal imbalances. In such case you’d want to consult with your physician.

What foods to eat before bed to sleep tight and lose weight

It’s better to avoid snacking especially on pizza, burgers, etc. late at night before you become a regular night eater. However, if there is no way around a bedtime snack--for the reasons mentioned earlier--opt for the foods that don’t make your tummy grumble all night long and can actually help you slumber better and even burn fat. It’s no magic. There are low-calorie foods which are naturally high in vitamins and minerals (like tryptophan, magnesium, B6 and calcium) that help produce melatonin, the sleep hormone.

You are welcome to mix the below superfoods together and make healthy at-night snacks for a restful sleep and weight loss.

low calorie healthy foods

Meet the healthiest all-natural bedtime snacks:

Foods high in an amino acid called Tryptophan

  • Dairy products (milk and low-fat yogurt, cottage cheese)
  • Some fruits (bananas, kiwi, apples)
  • Organic seafood (sardines, shrimp, tuna, salmon)
  • Poultry (chicken and lean turkey)
  • Some nuts (almonds, cashews, walnuts, peanuts)
  • Peanut butter
  • Berries (cranberries, cherries, chokeberry, blueberries)
  • Lentils, beans

Foods high in a mineral called Magnesium

  • Leafy greens (spinach, kale)
  • Avocado
  • Brazil nuts, pecans
  • Soybeans
  • Wheat germ

Foods high in a vitamin called B6

  • Sunflower seeds
  • Meat (lean pork, lean beef)
  • Dried prunes, dried apricots
  • Pistachio nuts

Foods high in a mineral called Calcium

  • Whole-grain breads
  • Green peas
  • Some vegetables (tomatoes, broccoli, asparagus)
  • Legumes (lentils, beans)

Some of the best nighttime snacks for weight loss

toasts with superfoods

  1. Slices of a lean turkey with green peas.
  2. Avocado-salmon on wholegrain bread sandwich.
  3. Wholegrain bread with peanut butter and cranberries.
  4. Low-fat Greek yogurt with blueberries, cashews and cranberries.
  5. Steamed chicken with asparagus or lentils.
  6. Kiwi with cottage cheese on a wholegrain cracker.
  7. Cottage cheese with blueberries and mint leaves.

What makes these late-night snacks healthy and great for weight loss

  • The above foods are all low-calorie options. Nevertheless, the right combos are pretty nutritious and will leave you full and satisfied. For instance, tuna, sardines and salmon are loaded with omega-3 acids that help stop your cravings for unhealthy foods.
  • Most of these products are rich in de-bloating minerals and nutrients that guarantee you a good night’s sleep and will make your tummy flat in the morning.
  • The abundance of vitamin C, magnesium, potassium and iron help flush out excess salt and bring oxygen to blood cells to boost sound and healthy sleep and help calorie burn.

As opposed to the foods that promote slumbers, there are foods that can easily disrupt your sleep, as well as they can stand in the way of your weight-loss goals. They are fatty, greasy and spicy foods, high-protein and water-rich foods, as well as bubbly and sugary drinks like soda.

As you can see, nighttime snacking is not at all bad provided you go for healthier options. Some last minute advice? - Stock your fridge and kitchen cabinets with the right powerhouse foods. So that you’d be ahead of the game when your cravings strike.

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Written by Volha Zaitsava
Volha is a writer and Wellness Editor at Verv. She is a big believer that the only healthy way to approach fitness and nutrition is through self-care and...
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