It is 11:00 p.m. You are watching T.V. Suddenly, a Dominoz commercial appears on the screen with their latest schemes and a sumptuous pizza flashes on the screen, and WHOOOSH…!!! U get severe hunger pangs, and well, you go to the kitchen, search for stock of chocolates, cakes or your favorite cookies to munch on. For most of the people, their midnight Maggi is the ultimate solace for these cravings. Ah, well, the tale doesn’t here. Then, after you satisfy your temptations, you have guilty feelings for consuming those extra calories. But you convince yourself by thinking that, it is just for tonight, and if we’re not meant to have midnight snacks, why is there a light in the fridge? And after coming to senses, you promise yourself to control this craving from next day. And the whole midnight tale repeats itself the following night.
The reasons behind these late night snacking are complex and various and range from boredom, restlessness, insomnia to loneliness, self-denial and nutritional imbalance and the first step towards overcoming a late-night snacking habit is figuring out the reason behind your nocturnal munching.
So here are a few simple steps which can help you control those hunger demons –
Self- talk : Go in front of the mirror and talk to yourself out loud about what you plan to eat, and why, and what you can do instead or how your favorite dress will become tight if you eat this piece of cake.
Aromatherapy : Burning aromatic candles can lower your appetite, but obviously, avoid chocolate and vanilla aromas, as they stimulate chocolate and ice-cream craving. Keep a pack of lavender with you at this time.
Keep only healthy foods at home : This is one of the best ways to stop yourself from gorging on those extra carbs. Bringing healthy snacks like muesli, digestive fibre biscuits etc. at home can help you keep your cravings at bay.
Stay busy : Take up a hobby like knitting, reading, jigsaw puzzle which will help to keep your mind off snacking.
Have a late dinner : Push your dinner back an hour or two and you will find yourself ready for bed before you have a chance to start craving a snack.
Also, here are some diet-friendly midnight snacks that will control self-destructive eating:
Water: Thirst also mimics hunger pangs, so before reaching a box of chocolates next time from your fridge, hydrate yourself with a cup or two of water. If you want something that is more savory to the taste buds, you can flavor it with sliced lemon or lime.
Milk : Milk has tryptophan, a sleep inducing amino acid that helps lull you into a deep sleep. Along with this, milk also provides us with Calcium and Vitamin D which is very good for our bones.
Popcorn : Watching a late night movie? Well popcorn is actually the right snack for you. Not only it is a good source of complex carbs, also is low in calories, in addition to being the fun movie snack.
Nuts : Nuts are a great night time nosh, they regulate blood sugar levels and promote serotonin production in body. So, reaching for a handful of your favorite nuts, which are rich in anti-oxidants is quite beneficial for you.
Craving for snacks in midnight is not a disease in itself, but it does cause obesity- related problems ad can sabotage your weight loss efforts. So as interesting and tasty as consuming these snacks sound, they are not so good for your health.