Healthy Late Night Snacks:
Healthy Late Night Snacks: No matter how hard you try, it’s impossible to eat healthy all day every day! We all slip up occasionally and reach for fast food or junk food after work or at night.
If you want to make sure that your next late night snack isn’t contributing to your expanding waistline, follow these tips from nutritionists and dietitians to find the best healthy late night snacks that fit into your weight loss goals!
1) Sweet Potato Fries
This is a nice alternative to traditional French fries, and they’re even better when you dip them in ketchup. A cup of sweet potato fries contains only 160 calories and is loaded with vitamin A, which helps you maintain your vision.
It also contains vitamin C, which aids iron absorption, keeps your skin healthy, promotes wound healing and boosts immunity. And it’s full of beta-carotene that gives sweet potatoes their orange color.
Because beta-carotene can be converted into vitamin A in your body, a single cup of these will give you 12 percent of your daily value for vitamin A. Potatoes are already good for you; sweet potatoes make them even better!
2) Nuts and Nut Butter
If you’re craving something crunchy, grab a handful of unsalted nuts, such as almonds or walnuts. (Always be sure to check package labels for serving sizes and calories.)
But be aware that as satisfying as they are, nuts contain plenty of fat. One cup (152 grams) of cashews contains 869 calories and 65 grams of fat; while one cup (118 grams) of peanuts contains 711 calories and 66 grams of fat.
If you want a late-night snack with more staying power—without so many calories—try replacing your standard bagel or slice of toast with half an avocado sprinkled with sea salt.
Cheese can be an excellent late-night snack because it provides many essential nutrients and is relatively low in calories and fat.
Opt for a low-sodium cheese, which can help prevent bloating and water retention. If you opt for full-fat cheese, go with hard cheeses like cheddar instead of creamy options like brie or mozzarella.
Bananas are a great late-night snack option because they’re easy to prepare and full of potassium, a mineral that can help with muscle function. They’re also relatively low in calories and carbs, making them an excellent choice for losing weight.
Studies suggest bananas may also help boost your body’s levels of tryptophan, which helps convert food into serotonin, a natural mood booster.
5) Strawberries with Chocolate Dip
The texture of fresh strawberries is satisfying, and helps keep you full while giving you energy. Dip them in dark chocolate and it’s a delicious treat that will tide you over until breakfast.
For optimal taste and nutrition, buy organic strawberries that are grown without pesticides or herbicides (aka non-GMO).
Frozen berries are just as nutritious, but their longer shelf life means they won’t always be at your beck and call when late night hunger strikes.
They’re also more expensive than fresh berries so don’t fall for a marketing ploy just because an item is labeled organic. Instead, opt for berries in season when they’re abundant at farmer’s markets or grocery stores.
Look for fully ripened fruit with unblemished skin that gives slightly when pressed gently.
6) Almonds and Cashews
Nuts are filling and packed with nutrition, but they can also be calorie dense. Choose unsalted varieties (the kind you buy in bulk) so you’re not adding unnecessary sodium and trans fats (often found in packaged nuts).
Almonds and cashews, with fewer calories per serving than peanuts or walnuts, are a great choice for snacks and salads.
7) Protein Shake
It’s always best to eat right before bed, but sometimes you’re just so busy that it doesn’t happen. Protein shakes are a great way to get in your post-workout nutrition and they’re perfect for a late night snack too!
Use organic low-fat or skim milk and plain yogurt as your base. Add a scoop of whey protein powder, vanilla extract and a bit of Stevia (an all natural sweetener). This is my favorite shake recipe by far.
8) Granola Bars
Granola bars are filled with fiber and protein, two things that can help curb your hunger. Plus, many granola bars come in single-serve packs which make them easier to fit into your busy schedule.
If you’re trying to lose weight, try getting yourself a box of granola bars for work so you have something on hand when hunger strikes. Here are some healthy granola bar recipes to get you started:
Wellness Warrior Power Cookie Bars; Wellness Warrior Almond Butter Fudge Granola Bars; Dixie Diner No Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Energy Bites.
How Sweet It Is Maple Glazed Pumpkin Protein Blondies; How Sweet It Is Brownie Batter Chocolate Chip Protein Blondies; Lexi’s Clean Kitchen Triple Berry Smoothie Pancakes.