The old adage about weight loss that you shouldn't eat after 9 p.m. is mostly garbage: if you do not exceed your daily calorie intake, you will not gain weight through eating late.
But if a late night snack quickly turns into two (or a whole bowl of popcorn / ice cream / potato chips), it can be easy to meet your energy needs.
5 “healthy” habits that slow down your weight loss
A strategy some dieters take to combat evening overeating? They brush their teeth immediately after their snack. This can signal you that you are finished eating, both mentally and less appetizing.
However, brushing your teeth immediately after eating is not the only bedtime ritual that can help minimize the destruction of your diet at night. Here are five more tasks that can be used to double bedtime as weight loss time:
1. Choose the right evening snack.
It's okay to eat! According to the Mayo Clinic, eating five to seven small daily meals, including lean protein, healthy fats, whole grains, and fruits and vegetables, is the best weight loss strategy – and if you keep them apart every few hours, eat 60 minutes before bed should be fine.
But you have to eat the right stuff: late night snacks have a bad reputation because they are usually unhealthy, easy-to-reach indulgences that are high in calories and low in food. And fatty food can mess up your sleep while it is digested.
Instead, eat a combination of protein and a complex carbohydrate: protein synthesis is actually increased during sleep, which means that the nutrient builds muscle better in bed. And both protein and complex carbohydrates help you stay full and full all night. If you are part of the Nutrisystem program and you know that you will get hungry at night, keep one of your snacks for that time. They are made with the right nutrient balance. It doesn't hurt that they taste good too! Or try an apple with low-fat cheese spread or whole grain cereals with low-fat milk.
Just don't eat your snack in front of a screen: A review of previous studies from 2013 found that people who eat, play, or read games in front of the TV consume more calories while sitting there, especially later in the day. So don't sit on the couch with a bag or bowl – grab your snack at the table while you're not distracted and then return to your evening activities.
How To Beat Midnight Nibbles
2. Make yourself a warm drink to burn those calories.
There are many cases where drinking water can help you lose weight, but throwing gallons back at bedtime can actually hurt: drinking a lot of water before bedtime can result in nocturnal urge to urinate, which can interrupt sleep. And, as we'll see, a good night's sleep is the most important thing you can do at night to lose weight.
But you can still confuse thirst and just drink something in the evening. Give your drink some strength to increase weight loss and have something to help you sleep: use a chamomile tea bag and a decaffeinated green tea bag to create a blended tea.
Why this mix? Chamomile is traditionally used as a sleep aid, although there are few clinical studies on its effects – one study suggests that the flavonoid apigenin may bind to benzodiazepine receptors in the brain, which can have a hypnotic effect. If you let the caffeine out of the green tea, you won't be over-stimulated, and the green tea itself can help you lose weight: in one study, those who drank two cups a day for 90 days lost 2.6 pounds more than those who did didn't drink the tea.
And the warmth can help satisfy hunger: In a 2008 Penn State study, those who consumed hot liquids an hour before a meal ate 134 fewer calories than they sat down to eat.
3rd Prepare yourself for the success of losing weight tomorrow.
Do the future version of you a favor: Prepare your food for tomorrow while you're still up tonight When you're at Nutrisystem, choose which meals and snacks you'd like to eat tomorrow and set them aside. Hard boil a few eggs that you can have on hand when the nibbles break in during the meal. Chop a whole bunch of fruits and vegetables, then divide them into separate bags or containers so you have healthy SmartCarb and vegetable options on hand all day. You can even prepare a few Mason jar of salads So you're covered for lunch for a few days this week.
If you're not at Nutrisystem, pack a healthy, filling lunch so you don't get rushed and under-packed in the morning. Cut vegetables and fruits for healthy snacks during the afternoon rest and when you get home from work.
And if you are having lunch with colleagues or going to a meeting, go online now and take a look at the menu: you can think about it and prepare to order a meal that will satisfy your hunger and plan.
And keep track of what you did today by logging your groceries, water, weight and activity in our free online tracker. NuMi– just write down what you ate – helped participants in a 2008 study lose twice as much weight as those who did not keep a record of their food.
Then do not plan with food either: have the list of the most important tasks of tomorrow written down. That way, you won't lie down all night when you go to bed and hope that you remember what to do in the morning. You can rest assured that it is already on your list.
How to make a good habit stick
4. Make your room a sleeping place.
A good, restful night's sleep is the most important thing you can do in your bedroom to lose weight. If you only lose 30 minutes of sleep each day of the week, this can lead to weight gain and have a significant impact on insulin resistance. This increases the risk of type 2 diabetes.
First step: make your room dark. Really dark. Research has shown that exposure to even dim light during the night can upset your internal clock, affect your eating plan, and possibly lead to weight gain. In one study, mice that slept while exposed to dim light, such as a computer monitor or alarm clock, gained 50 percent more weight over eight weeks than mice that slept in complete darkness.
And don't use your phone. Aside from being a dim light that can have these effects, your phone's radiation can cause you to fall asleep longer and spend less time in deep sleep when you do so, according to a 2008 study that was carried out by the telephone manufacturer itself! And a 2014 study found that people who make calls after 9 p.m. t only did they spend less time in deep sleep, they were more exhausted in the morning and less busy at work.
How to fit fitness into your day
5. Meditate before bed.
Try mindfulness meditation to scroll through Facebook while you sleep to relax. Studies have shown that such meditations have shortened the total waking time and extended the total sleeping time for insomnia patients.
To do a simple mindfulness meditation before going to bed, try the following: Sit on the edge of the bed with your eyes closed and your back straight. Breathe in and out naturally through your nose and try to concentrate only on the physical sensations of breathing: how much your chest rises and falls? Do other parts of the body move? Think about how the air feels when it flows in and out of your nostrils. When other thoughts enter your mind, notice that you are distracted, acknowledge it, and think about your breathing again.
If that doesn't work, count your breaths. When you breathe in through your nose, you say in your mind, "I breathe in. One." Then when you exhale, you say in your mind: “I exhale. Two. "Count to 20, then repeat. Try doing this meditation for five minutes to start.