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Many people have trouble with overeating at night. They may eat a bunch of junk food and drink too much late at night. If you are one of these people, then it is time for you to take action. Despite late-night snacking directly linked to weight gain, 60% of Americans between 18-80 admit to still succumbing to the cravings.

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Have a big dinner

Make sure that dinner is the biggest meal of your day. Dinner should be able to keep you full the entire evening without any cravings. Suppose you're eating less than 500 calories at dinner. In that case, this will likely not be enough for an entire evening. Making sure your meal is substantial with enough calories will keep you full for the evening. You should have no problem going into bed without any cravings!

Paella Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
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Plan out your meals for the day

Planning out your meals for the day and making sure they're not too heavy or light will help you manage hunger. Make sure to eat a decently sized breakfast, lunch, and dinner so that there isn't much room left in your stomach by bedtime!

Colourful food Photo by Cristiano Pinto on Unsplash
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Don't watch too much TV

Watching too much TV is one of the biggest reasons people overeat at night. Turn off the TV and read a book or do something else that will help you unwind before bed.

Some other things you can do instead of resorting to more screen time are:

  • Picking out your clothes for tomorrow
  • Washing all dishes from tonight's meal, so they're clean in time for tomorrow morning
  • Cleaning up any messes around your house (such as laundry, dishes, toys) to make it look cleaner and less cluttered when you wake up in the morning
remote control in front of a tv Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash
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Drink more water

Drinking water before going to sleep instead of eating something sweet will keep you hydrated, and it can help suppress your appetite. Water can also help you to feel full before bed.

Some other tips for staying hydrated include:

  • Drink plenty of water during the day
  • Carry around a bottle of water with you and drink it throughout the day when you have time
  • Keep a glass on your nightstand in case you're thirsty at night but don't want to get up by yourself; this can help make it less tempting to eat instead because it's already there waiting for you!
water with lime wedges Photo by Alicja Gancarz on Unsplash
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Try not to drink anything with caffeine

Caffeine can stimulate your central nervous system and make it hard to sleep. If you can't sleep at your usual bedtime, your body may think it's daytime, which can stimulate your appetite and lead to overeating.

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Get more sleep

Sleep deprivation can make you feel more hungry and lead to overeating. Try getting at least eight hours of sleep per night regularly so that your appetite is regulated!

Some ways to get better sleep are:

  • Don't use your bed for anything other than sleeping, including work or watching TV
  • Stop using electronics an hour before going to bed
  • Create a soothing nighttime routine by reading something calming or closing the day with some meditation
  • Invest in blackout curtains if necessary; many people report feeling less hungry when they have dark bedrooms due to their bodies linking darkness and restfulness together.
woman sleeping in bed Photo by Kinga Cichewicz on Unsplash
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Increase your protein and fiber

Increasing your protein and fiber intake will help you feel fuller for longer, which can prevent overeating at night. Eating dinner with plenty of lean protein like chicken or fish and veggies high in fiber, such as broccoli, spinach, or peppers, can help!

Some other tips for eating more healthy proteins include:

  • Eating beans every day because they're packed full of muscle-building protein
  • Switching to more plant-based proteins such as beans, tempeh, or tofu
  • Adding lean protein like chicken breast, fish (especially salmon), beans, and eggs into your diet every day.
lemon chicken Photo by Mark DeYoung on Unsplash
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Don't buy junk food

Reduce temptation by not buying junk food in the first place. Having a large pantry full of chips, cookies, and ice cream is going to make it much harder for you to resist the temptation!

Healthy snacking tips include:

  • Only buy healthy snacks, like fruit or nuts
  • Keep all tempting foods out of your house; if they're there, then you'll be more likely to give in when hunger hits later on at night.
  • Invest in some mini-jars from stores like Whole Foods with different types of nut butters (almond butter or peanut butter) so that way you can have something quick and satisfying without needing anything else. You could also add applesauce or yogurt into these jars as well for some added fiber and protein!
doughnuts in a box Photo by Bethany Newman on Unsplash
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Start a hobby to keep your mind occupied

Starting a hobby can help to take your mind off of food. Usually, people eat at night due to boredom or to relieve stress. When you begin a hobby, your mind is occupied, and it becomes easier for you to resist the temptation of eating instead!

Some hobbies that might be helpful:

  • Reading or writing in a journal (you could do this before bed)
  • Playing an instrument like piano, guitar, or drums, music has been shown repeatedly to reduce stress levels, so playing one will keep thoughts of food out of your head as well!
  • Taking up a new type of exercise like walking or yoga
woman doing yoga Photo by Avrielle Suleiman on Unsplash
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If you can't resist eating late at night, try making healthier late-night snacks

Make sure that your late-night snack is as healthy as possible by choosing something like fruit or yogurt instead of chips. This can be an excellent way to satisfy your late-night hunger without overeating.

healthy fruit salad with yogurt Photo by Daniel Cabriles on Unsplash

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