What are the best healthy snacks for weight loss to eat before bed? We know that we shouldn’t snack too late at night, but there are times when it can’t be helped. (You worked late and are starving by the time you got home; the kids had a late soccer game and you never had a chance to eat proper dinner; or you just have the munchies and can’t fall asleep because your stomach is growling.)
But before you reach for that pint of ice cream or bag of chips (because you know you’re not gonna stop at just one… or even five), look in your fridge or pantry for these better before-bed healthy snack choices. These snacks are not only be good for your waistline, but they’ll help you drift off to dreamland, too.
1. Handful of almonds and cherry juice
Here’s a yummy combination of foods that are perfect snacks to eat before bed: almonds and cherry juice. Almonds are great for weight loss and are loaded with magnesium, a mineral that’s known for relieving insomnia and helping you relax so you can sleep better. And research has shown that cherry juice can boost melatonin, the hormone that helps regulate your sleep-wake cycles. These two healthy foods are the perfect powerhouse combo for a healthy nighttime snack.
2. Cereal and milk
You don’t have to wait till breakfast to have some cereal and milk. In fact, it’s the perfect nighttime snack. It’s a quick and easy no-fuss snack that’s good for weight loss and for sleep. Studies have shown that dairy products and vitamin D may help with weight loss; and research also shows that dairy products may help boost the production of melatonin. And of course, a whole-grain cereal that’s low in sugar, like other complex carbohydrates that are high in fiber, are known to be excellent weight-loss foods.
Speaking of breakfast foods that are great weight-loss snacks for nighttime, a warm bowl of oatmeal is a perfect belly-filling snack to eat before bed. This powerhouse food has been shown to help keep blood sugar levels in check, reduce cholesterol, and satisfy hunger so that you won’t binge before you head off to sleep. Top with some berries for an added bit of fiber and get some antioxidants to boot.
4. Cheese and crackers
Another great dairy and complex carb combo is cheese and crackers. (Just be sure to limit how much cheese you eat to watch your calorie intake.) Add an apple or a bunch of grapes and you can boost important fiber intake and help you feel full.
5. Yogurt smoothie
When you make a yogurt smoothie, you blend together two very beneficial foods that make a perfect nighttime snack: yogurt and fruit. Yogurt contains protein, which keeps your muscles strong and helps you feel full so that you’re less likely to overeat right before bed, which can cause acid reflux and heartburn—not to mention add on unwanted pounds. (That’s one reason why yogurt can make an excellent snack when a craving hits.) And when you add some colorful berries, you boost your antioxidant intake. Just be sure to use unsweetened plain lowfat yogurt to avoid unnecessary sugar and fat.
There’s a reason why popcorn is the perfect treat for nighttime snacking. The next time you plop down to watch a movie before bed, make some air-popped popcorn. It’s a whole grain and is low in calories (3 cups contain less than 100 calories), which makes it the perfect weight-loss food. Just be sure not to load it with butter or salt, and you’re good to go. And whatever you do, avoid those bags of microwave popcorn, which are loaded with unhealthy fats, salt, and harmful chemicals.
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Scrambled Eggs On White Plate
Eggs only have up to 75 calories each–giving you the low-calorie protein hit that you need to get you through the day.
Fruit Salad With Blueberries Banana Watermelon
Filling and delicious, fruit salads often contain low-cal watermelon, bananas, which can slow down digestion, and blueberries, which may positively change how you process fat and sugar.
Sliced Turkey With Vegetables
Lean meats like ham, chicken, and turkey could limit cravings later on, especially when combined with low-calorie vegetables like iron-rich spinach and Vitamin D–filled mushrooms.
Avocado On Whole Wheat Toast
Whole-wheat toast, which contains fiber, digests slowly, keeping you fuller for longer. Top with avocado, which satisfies while lowering your cholesterol thanks to its monounsaturated fat.
Granola With Fruit And Milk
Granola has an impressive amount of fiber, iron, and heart-healthy unsaturated fats. Eat with soy milk for less sugar than dairy milk and a fatty acid that can stop the absorption of unnecessary fat.
Oatmeal With Fruit
On its own, oatmeal can suppress your appetite. Served with fruit, the benefits only increase. And simply combining it with a small amount of honey can quash your sweet tooth in a low-calorie way.
Nut Butter On Bagel
Often healthier than peanut butter, butters containing nuts like cashews, almonds, and hazelnuts give you the same slow-release of energy. Spread on a multigrain, whole-wheat bagel to stay full.
Black Coffee English Muffin Tomatoes
Choosing black coffee over a latte can drastically drop your calorie intake. Eat with a 140-calorie English muffin topped with a sugar-free fruit preserve, or even tomatoes and black pepper.
Yogurt With Honey
Loaded with healthy bacteria and vitamins, choose a lowfat, sugar-free, natural yogurt that's high in calcium. Add a little honey or fresh fruit to sweeten.
With nothing but a couple of bananas and an egg, banana pancakes are a simple, low-cal meal. The protein can boost your metabolism, keep your muscles lean, and balance sugar levels.