Healthy nighttime munchies under 100 calories
Ever heard the theory that anything you eat before bed gets jettisoned directly to fat? The reality is that in a 24 hour period, calories in must equal calories out to maintain a healthy weight. Even if you jammed all your calories into a bedtime snack, you won’t gain weight any more than someone who spaced those calories out. As long as you make smart food choices, not salty or sweet and nutritionally empty – which will absolutely weigh you down.
But weight gain aside, what you eat before bed can disrupt your sleep. And disrupted sleep can lead to poor food choices the next day. See the problem? If sleep is more of an inconvenience than a chance to reenergize, the ultimate sleep-horrible-diet might be for you.
But even if you’ve maxed out your calorie count for the day, going to bed hungry isn’t the answer either. Your growling stomach may disrupt your sleep and you’ll wake up feeling fatigued and famished – which may lead to poor food choice early the next day.
Want some simple grab-and-go low-calorie snack choices?
- String cheese – At approx. 80 calories, one serving contains enough protein and fat leave you feeling satisfied until morning.
- Non-fat Greek yogurt – At 100-150 protein-rich calories, yogurt can help calm your stomach, which means no indigestion or heartburn to interrupt your sleep.
- Apple & peanut butter – Less than 100 calories, depending on which brand of peanut butter you choose.
- Non-fat chocolate pudding in a cup – Say hello to 90 calories that satisfy emotionally and nutritionally. Double bonus!
- Bananas – At approx. 100 calories, these high-fiber gems are loaded with satisfying fiber and tryptophan.
If you’re hungry for a little something more, these healthy snack recipes (all under 100 calories) might be just what you’re looking for.
Sweet Potato Chips – 77 calories
Sweet potatoes are jam-packed with B-vitamins, which act as stress-defenders. And because they’re rich in complex carbs, they help regulate blood-sugar levels overnight.
- large sweet potato
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 300F.
- Slice your sweet potato crosswise into thin chip-size slivers
(if you prefer them cut lengthwise, add 5 min to the cooking time).
- Arrange chips in a single layer on 2 parchment-paper-lined baking sheets. Sprinkle with sea salt. Place sheets in top and lower thirds of your oven and bake for about 50 min, flipping once halfway through and switching the sheets. Remove from oven when centers are soft and edges are crisp. Be sure to take out smaller chips as soon as they are cooked to prevent scorching. Allow to cool for 15 min and serve. Recipe via TodaysParent.com.
Cinnamon Oranges – 86 calories
A carb-rich snack that’s easy to prepare and a sweet treat before bed. Try it in the morning with French toast and blueberries. Delish!
- 4 navel oranges
- 2 tbsp. orange juice
- 2 tbsp. lemon juice
- 1 tbsp. sugar
- 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
With a sharp knife, remove the rind and white pith from oranges.
Cut each into 5 or 6 slices and arrange on 4 plates.
Whisk together orange juice and lemon juice, sugar, and cinnamon. Spoon over the orange slices. Recipe via EatingWell.com.
Mini Turkey Sandwich – 63 calories
Turkey contains tryptophan, an amino acid that plays a role in the sleep-inducing process. This recipe is super simple and quick to make.
One party-style pumpernickel bread, 1/2 slice turkey breast, 1/4 slice Swiss cheese and a pickle. Recipe via Health.com.
Lissa Coffey from the Better Sleep Council offers even more foods to enjoy that will keep the waistline in check and protect your sleep. Enjoy the delish surprises on the list!