For many people, the evenings can be the hardest time to not give into those snack cravings. If you’re wondering what to eat at night when you’re hungry, here are some of my favourite healthy snacks that are satisfying. Whether you’re dieting or not, I’m sure you’ll find at least one suitable snack on this list. The options in this article are all healthy and aren’t high in calories.
Foods to avoid late at night
Some foods induce sleep, but others keep people up tossing and turning. The following foods should be avoided after 8pm:
- Fatty foods: Fatty foods (such as chicken wings) take a long time to digest, and can cause significant gastrointestinal distress in some people.
- Super-spicy foods: Like fatty foods, spicy foods can cause discomfort in the tummy. Those prone to acid reflux may find snacking on spicy foods counterproductive to counting sheep.
- Complex grains: Complex carbs such as those in multigrain bread take a while to digest. They provide valuable fibre that keeps people feeling fuller for longer, so save the grainy toast for breakfast.
- Sugary snacks: Sugar-added snacks cause blood sugar to spike, which can make sleeping seem elusive. Although blood sugar from these foods processes quickly, the resulting crash can result in waking with hunger pangs.
Healthy evening snacks for those counting calories
Here are some low-calorie snack options for people who are watching their weight:
- Apples and nut butter: Nut butter (almond butter is a must-try) helps ease people into slumber, as do apples. Nut butter can be high in calories, but just a spoonful in moderation provides the body with protein. Try to find organic, 100% natural nut butter.
- Greek yoghurt: Greek yoghurt contains dairy with a powerful punch of probiotics. Probiotics help to balance stomach bacteria which reduces indigestion. So snacking on this with some berries prior to bedtime can prevent abdominal woes from waking you up.
- Seeds: Pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds contain fat, but in the hearty-healthy, omega-3 variety. Because of the high vitamin E content, eating seeds before bed can help neurons heal during rest. Simply toss in olive oil and bake for a few minutes in the oven, then sprinkle with a small pinch of salt.
- Slightly salted popcorn: Popcorn is high in fibre, so enjoying some before bedtime is a recommended snack. Air-popped popcorn contains few calories and is tasty with a sprinkle of salt.
- Edamame: Edamame beans make the perfect evening snack – roasted edamame contains few calories and tastes delicious.
Healthy evening snacks for those maintaining weight
These super healthy snack options will satisfy even the most demanding of appetites:
- Cottage cheese: Although it’s long considered a diet food, full-fat cottage cheese has quite a few calories. Choose the low fat version to consume less calories.
- Carrot chips: Drizzle carrot sticks with olive oil and dust lightly with salt. Bake them in the oven, then add some parmesan or mozzarella cheese to create a healthy twist on cheesy fries.
- Dried fruit and nut blends: If making your own mix, raisins and dried cranberries pair well with almonds and walnut pieces.
- Cheese and fruit: Cheese is high in calories, but tastes delightful in little amounts with grapes and apple slices.
Best evening snacks for vegans
Those who prefer to pass on animal products might still crave late-night snacks sometimes, so here are some vegan favourites:
- Hummus and veggies: Hummus is so easy to make at home. Simply dip in some pepper slices, cucumber or cauliflower florets.
- Rice cakes with guacamole: Rice cakes contain just 35 calories each, and avocado-rich guacamole provides omega-3s and vitamin E. Enjoy this treat any time of day.
- Salsa and tortilla chips: Salsa is incredibly low in calories and is delicious with tortilla chips, most of which contain no animal products.
- Frozen grapes: Frozen grapes take a little prep time, but they taste like mini ice pops! They also add an interesting flavour to smoothies when used instead of ice.
Everyone craves the occasional late-night snack. But by selecting a healthy one, people can enjoy a good nosh any time of the day or night.
Till next time,