We’ve all been there. After a long hard day of working our ass off, we sit on the couch, turn on the TV and just relax. A few minutes go by and then it hits, the cravings, you’re watching TV but your mouth just isn’t munching on anything. You want something salty, crunchy or maybe sweets are your poison. You think about heading to the kitchen and picking up some snacks but then you remember your diet, all that you worked so hard for. Well, fear not! You don’t have to give up your bedtime snacks. You just need to make smarter choices. Don’t worry, I’m not going to tell you to eat nuts and vegetables, although they are a great choice.
Bake Your Own Chips
I’m sure most of us love relaxing with a big bag of crunchy salty chips. We all know though that they are no good for us. Filled with sodium, chemicals and unhealthy oils, packaged chips are something we can do without. You don’t have to give it up though! It’s really easy to make your own. All you need to do is slice up a potato really thin, put it in a Ziploc, add a teaspoon of oil, your favorite spices (salt, pepper, paprika and cayenne works well), shake it up then lay them out on a baking sheet and bake for 20-30 minutes at 400F. To ensure maximum crispiness, take out the sheet halfway through and flip over the crisps and return to the oven.
Microwave and packaged popcorns are a nightmare to your health and fitness goals. They are incredibly high in calories and unhealthy chemicals. It’s an unfortunate situation because popcorn itself is actually a very healthy food item full of fiber and antioxidants. Instead of buying the microwave variety, opt for the popcorn kernels and pop them yourself on the stove. Add 1tbsp of oil (peanut works best, any other high smoke point oil will do as well) to a pot and add your popcorn. Cover the lid and let pop on medium heat. Season with salt and a bit of grass-fed butter (if you like).
Bananas make this list of bedtime snacks because they contain a very important mineral known as Potassium. Potassium helps relax the muscles and helps to fight restless leg syndrome, which if you have it, you know is unbearable and hinders your sleep quality. Bananas are also high in natural sugars, minerals and fiber.
Don’t worry about eating carbs at night, as long as they fit into your daily macronutrients, you will be fine.