5 Healthy Nighttime Snacks

Nighttime snacking is often where unwanted weight gain stems from. Some people tend to be hungrier at night, and have a lot of trouble avoiding it. Here are 5 healthy nighttime snack to try. 

The question always to ask if do I really need a snack? The evening tends to be the most tempting time of day, especially when you're trying to unwind and relax after a long, hard day. Even the most dedicated dieters break down and reach for a mindless snack. The question is are you stressed and trying to replace that feeling with food? Or are you really hungry enough to nourish yourself? 

Before you jump to get a bedtime snack, try to think about if you're really hungry. Oftentimes, you're not, but if you absolutely need to eat a little something before bed, try these 5 healthy ideas. 

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1. Banana with Nut Butter of Choice: Whether your favorite is almond butter, pecan or walnut butter, having a banana will satisfy you enough to not excessively snack. If you're craving something sweet, this is also a great choice. 

2. Hummus and Pita Bread: Having a small amount of hummus (no more than a half cup) along with 5-6 pita triangles can satisfy that savory craving and keep you full. You'll feel like you're eating something delicious and won't be tempted to go back to the cupboard. 

3. Pineapple and cottage cheese: A half cup of cottage cheese mixed with a small amount of pineapple or berries can make you feel full and also refreshed. 

4. Healthy baked apple: For a dessert-like craving, a baked apple is a delicious choice. Take a medium-sized apple (packed with fiber) and take out the corn. Spoon in a tablespoon of greek yogurt and sprinkle plan quick oats on top and a teaspoon of honey. Bake in the oven and you'll never want a slice of apple pie again.  

5. Eat cherries: According to research published in the Journal of Experimental Botany, cherries make a great and juicy bedtime snack. They're also one of the few raw foods that trigger melatonin production, a chemical responsible for the body's internal sleep-regulating clock. A small bowl of fresh cherries make for an idea snack at night, and when fresh ones are out of season, look to frozen one.