5 Healthy Late Night Snack Swaps
Even the most disciplined of us gives in to the late night munchies from time to time. We’ve all been there- you’re sitting on the couch watching your favorite show and you convince yourself that a few cookies and some ice cream won’t be THAT bad. Before you know it you’re left with melted chocolate on your hands a restless night of sleep.
While late-night snacking is never the best choice, the food itself can have a huge impact on the consequences. Foods with refined sugar, trans-fatty acids or chemicals are usually difficult to digest. Once our bodies go into sleep mode the goal is to focus on repairing and cleansing, not on digesting. (1) Therefore, the consumption of hard-to-process foods taxes the system, pushing the body into stress mode. The food is often not properly digested, which creates a slew of toxins in the system. (2) Here’s the good news: you don’t have to quit your nighttime snacking habit, just make a couple of easy tweaks! Choosing foods that are easy to digest, naturally sweetened, and full of whole nutrients can actually help the body repair and cleanse. Here are our 5 favorite late night snack swaps:
Ice cream for banana ice cream: Take a super ripe large banana, cut it into pieces and freeze. Once frozen for at least 2 hours, add it to a food processor and blend. Blend and blend and blend until it turns into ice cream. Eat immediately or throw back into the freezer for later use.
Milk Chocolate for Dark Chocolate: Dark chocolate contains more cocoa AKA more flavonoids, making it a better choice than milk chocolate. Plus, dark chocolate varieties often have less added sugar and fat which also improves its overall nutritional value. (3)
Candy for Dried Fruit: Dried fruit will cure your sweet tooth without the added sugar, colors and additives found in most store-bought candies. (4)
Potato Chips for Sweet Potato Chips: Get one of the easiest, best recipes for sweet potato chips on Paleo Grubs here.
Regular Milk for Almond Milk: The healthy fats in the nut milk act as building blocks for the body, helping to rebuild tissues overnight such as muscle, brain and skin. (5)
Sam Swensen & Suja Juice
- “Carbohydrates, Proteins, and Fats – Disorders of Nutrition.” Merck Manuals Consumer Version. Merck Manual, 2015. Web. <http://www.merckmanuals.com/home/disorders-of-nutrition/overview-of-nutrition/carbohydrates-proteins-and-fats>.
- “5 Reasons Your Digestive System Isn’t Working Properly.” Daily Health Post. Daily Health Post, 28 Feb. 2014. Web. <http://dailyhealthpost.com/5-reasons-your-digestive-system-isnt-working-properly/>.
- Chocolate: Pros and Cons of This Sweet Treat – Harvard Health.” Chocolate: Pros and Cons of This Sweet Treat. Harvard Health Women’s Watch, 1 Feb. 2014. Web. http://www.health.harvard.edu/heart-health/chocolate-pros-and-cons-of-this-sweet-treat
- “Health Benefits of Dried Fruit.” LIVESTRONG.COM. LIVESTRONG.COM, 17 Feb. 2015. Web. <http://www.livestrong.com/article/231523-health-benefits-of-dried-fruit/>.
- “Health Benefits of Almond Milk | Organic Facts.” Organic Facts. Organic Information Services Pvt Ltd, 4 June 2013. Web. <https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/almond-milk.html>.