I will have to admit that I am guilty of being a late night snacker. This little habit has grown from being only on the weekends to now weekends plus a few nights during the week. It is now getting to the point that I need to change my ways and nip this habit in the butt. Eating late at night will not make you gain weight but eating extra unnecessary calories will. Its know that people snack for two reasons, one if you are actually hungry or two if you are just snacking out of habit. So to make sure and handle both issues here are some tips in helping take control of the late night snacking bandit.
(Ideas came from PopSugar article)
1. Follow the 3-Hour rule:
If you are cutting calories to lose weight make sure that you are not cutting out to many that you are starving by the end of the day. To maintain energy throughout the day and to remain feeling satisfied when night time comes try following the eating every 2-3 hour rule. Eating 2 small healthy snacks between breakfast and lunch, and lunch and dinner, will help fuel your body with the nutrients it needs early on and never lets you get into the hungry deprived state.
2. Fiber and Protein Should be at Every Meal:
Eating Fiber will help make your body feel full longer and Protein will maintain your energy stores. This is especially important for the last meal of the night so as to decrease any of those hunger pains that get you motivated to grab a candy bar. Eat foods like; whole grains, fresh produce, nuts, seeds, lean meats, and poultry they will help maintain your nutrients stores and make your body feel satisfied with healthy foods and not craving junk.
3. Drink more Water:
Try keeping a glass full of ice water with you during times when you don’t want to be snacking. Drinking the water will make your stomach feel full and having it be ice water will make your body burn more calories by heating up the temperature. Having water will also keep your hands busy and keep you distracted from wanting to do unnecessary snacking.
4. Don’t Deprive Yourself:
We all know that if we deprive our self from something our body is craving eventually we will give in and binge on that sweet. So it is better to have a small treat to curve the craving then to deprive yourself and deal with the consequences later. Once you have your small treat move the rest of the junk food out of sight or out of your house. If you know its there you will want to eat more.
5. Make a Game Plan:
Plan out what you are eating for the day and make sure your calories are distributed throughout wisely so you will not be starving come night time. If you are wanting to eat a small snack after dinner plan it into your allotted calories. Have the snack planned out or pre-made so you don’t eat to much out of boredom or out of habit. Try things like cut up fresh fruit or a blended frozen banana see here.
6. Get Someone else Involved:
Having someone else who will hold you accountable to your goal will help changing the habit a little easier. When we know we don’t want to disappoint or tell someone we failed accomplishing our goals become a little bit more real. Tell someone you live with about your goal and either have them do it with you or help you in your efforts of achieving your goal. Let them know not to snack in front of you or bring food into the home that you don’t want. If you live alone tell a friend about your goal and call that person to chat with whenever you are feeling like unnecessary snacking.
7. Give it a Week:
The first week is always the hardest with staring a new goal. Give yourself a full week of trying to make this change before you quite. If you are like me and our used to snacking at night while you watch TV then try doing something different at night to unwind. Go for a walk or talk to someone on the phone. Change your usual snacking environment up so you will not be tempted.
(ps. I’m not eliminating this girls late night snacking, her picture was just too cute not to add :) )
I know that attempting this goal can be hard for some (including me) but if we try it we will see results. Check back on Sunday for a post about this Challenge.