Although we all love a midnight snack, the truth is that our bodies do not like it at all. Late night snacking can result in all kinds of digestion problems because the purpose of eating is to fuel the body and when we sleep we do not need as much fuel. It is not healthy to eat just before going to bed, particularly for those who are trying to lose weight.
Since it takes two weeks to create a new habit, doing the following things consistently for the next 14 days will mean you should easily be able to curb those late night cravings after that.
How To Kick Your Late Night Snacking Habit
1. Eat regularly throughout the day and finish your day with a substantial, satisfying meal. Eating at regular intervals throughout the course of the day will keep your blood sugar level steady which will eliminate the desire for a late night snack.
2. Respond to your hunger cravings with healthy options throughout the day. Denying yourself the things you crave during the day will lead to eating late night snacks, so you need to fill those cravings but go for healthier options. For example, have a small sliver of cake after dinner or satisfy your sweet tooth with something less fattening like mixed fruit, low-fat ice-cream, Jello or sherbet.
3. Delay giving in to the temptation to eat late at night by 10 minutes. Tell yourself you will wait 10 minutes. If you are able to resist the temptation for 10 to 15 minutes you will be less likely to give in after that. Get busy doing something else as a distraction and you will be likely to forget about the craving.
4. If after this 10 minute delay you still find it difficult to resist the temptation, try a few of the following:
* Have a mint – mints and hard candy have very few calories and a mint will freshen your mouth, giving you a little burst that may satisfy your craving.
* Brush your teeth. You are less likely to eat right after you have brushed your teeth. By brushing your teeth you are giving the message to yourself that you do not need the snack because the day is over and it is now almost time for bed. In fact, if you eat something now, you will have to brush your teeth again.
* Focus on your other senses. You can fool your senses and distract from the hunger by smelling a sweet scented candle.
* Choose to have a glass of water instead of reaching for the potato chips. Hunger cravings can often be signs of dehydration; this means that instead of having a bowl of chips what your body really needs in order to satisfy the craving is water.
* Drink a cup of decaf coffee or herbal tea. The benefit of herbal tea is that it also has a calming effect which will enable you to get a better night’s sleep.
If you stick to this commitment for just 14 days without giving in, you will find that you will have broken the late night snacking habit. This will result in better quality sleep as well as weight loss and better health – all just from breaking the habit of eating late at night.