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Tips on How to Avoid Snacking at Night

If you often find yourself reaching into the fridge for a late night snack, you should know that this is not a bad habit you are doomed to have forever. It is crucial to understand that nighttime snacking usually arises as a response to eating choices that are made during the day. Stopping those late night cravings is usually just a matter of making the right choices during the day.

In this guest article, writer and blogger Doreen Brown presents five day time activities that can help keep those late night hunger pangs at bay.

1. Eat Enough During the Day

It might sound obvious, but the number of people who don't seem to realize it is nothing short of amazing. Hunger pangs that strike in the night are usually caused by not eating enough during the day. By ensuring you don't skip meals and eat sufficiently during the day, you'll be eliminating the need to snack when night falls. However, just because you know you should eat more during the day doesn't mean it's time to stock up on junk food. The trick is to ensure that what you're eating provides all the nutrition you need for the day. This means that instead of having cake for breakfast, tacos for lunch and pizza for dinner, you might opt for oats and yoghurt in the morning, a turkey sandwich with salad for lunch and grilled chicken at night.

2. Drink More Water

Most people don't drink enough water during the day. With your body being made up of 60% water, drinking water assists with maintaining the right balance of body fluids. It also has fewer calories than other options such as soft drinks or alcohol. Not only does water play an important role in helping your body to eliminate toxins, and assists with good looking skin, it also helps you to feel full and thus helps eliminate hunger pangs. If plain water isn't enticing enough for you, add the juice of a slice of lemon to give it a zesty flavor that will have you coming back for more.

3. Make Plans for the Night in Order to Avoid 'Boredom Snacking'

Many people snack at night because they're bored and just don't know what else to do. It's all too easy to reach into the fridge for another slice of cake when your mind is blank. Instead of just letting time pass, take control of your life and make plans for the night. Whether you're watching a movie in bed or getting lost in a good book, spending your evening purposefully will ensure you don't end up snacking mindlessly.

4. Adopt a New Routine, if Necessary

If you've been faithfully sticking with a routine but are still experiencing intense cravings at night, there could be problems with your routine itself. This means there might be something you're doing every day as part of your daily routine that is triggering hunger in the evening. If you spend each night watching cooking shows on TV or make lunch for the next day at midnight, you might want to switch up your nightly routine by going for a walk or reading a book instead.

5. Substitute Good Foods for Bad

Snacking at Night

It's not just how much you eat, but also what you eat that matters. When you're trying to decide what to eat, always remember that the fresher something is, the better. Eating sufficient quantities of fresh, healthy foods will ameliorate your hunger pangs at night. This means you should eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables rather than processed foods such as microwaveable meals and frozen pizza. Pay close attention to your food choices during the day and try to substitute all the bad, processed foods for good, fresh foods. For instance, if you have a dessert of cake every night, have a fruit platter consisting of strawberries, oranges and grapes instead. If you usually have a greasy burger for lunch, pack a healthy salad instead. Ensure you eat enough to curb hunger pangs at night. Knowing that you're making healthy choices will also enable you to eat without guilt.

The Bottom Line

Nighttime cravings are not something you need to resign yourself to. It is important to realize that your activities during the day have a huge impact on the impulses you feel in the night. If you find yourself eating uncontrollably at night, examine your activities during the day in accordance with the five points above.

About the Author
Doreen Brown enjoys writing and blogging on topics she is passionate about, including health and beauty. She has worked with a number of clients in this area, including Dr. Ken Wong from Central Coast Weight Loss Surgery.

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