December 6, 2023

Let’s look at this common problem that works against losing weight. 

Night-time snacking affects many people wanting to lose weight and possibly women more than men due to hormonal fluctuations. We’ll explore some reasons why this happens and offer some strategies that may help overcome sabotaging your good efforts and results.

Are you hungry? 

If you still feel hungry then what did you have for dinner? Did you eat a big enough protein serve in your meal? Start by increasing your protein intake in every meal for a week and monitor if, when and how much hunger you experience, after each meal. 

If the hunger feeling continues after dinner have a glass of water. If still hungry after 20 minutes, then have a protein shake. 

Another great option for night-time snacking is Greek yoghurt paired with:

  • Strawberries, mulberries, raspberries, or rockmelon
  • Avocado

Does snacking occur after breakfast or lunch? If not, then why only after dinner? Is evening a snacking risk time for you?

Not hungry?

If there is no hunger, then you have a habit that’s probably not working for you. We suggest having a conversation between your belly and your brain. Is it your mouth or your brain that wants the food? If it’s your brain, then you need to develop new positive habits that reinforce your actions and compliment your goals.

New habits that work for you require discipline.

  • Go for a walk after dinner to get away from food. This helps stabilise your blood sugar.
  • Journal about your thoughts and identify any stress and anxiety to help process feelings and emotions around your eating patterns. Writing allows you to think about experiences and potentially identify some clues.

Ask yourself “What would it look like if it was easy?”

Are you bored?

Find something positive to do instead of sitting in front of the TV or eating for the sake of boredom. Besides work and family what would you like to achieve? Do you have or want to start a side hustle? Write a book? Start by setting aside 30 minutes after dinner.

Start a hobby, join a book club, learn a language, paint, draw, sew, phone an old friend – something that gives you purpose and brings you joy and makes you feel good about yourself.

It’s Your Environment!

Ensure your fridge and cupboards only contain on-plan foods.

Husbands, partners, or family can be a challenge if they want foods that are not on-plan. The best way is to remove temptations, or at least get them out of sight.

However, if you do the shopping and continue to buy off-plan foods you have become your own saboteur. If you are buying foods “just in case the family/friends come over” you will end up eating them.

The most addictive snack foods have a combination of sugar/starch and fat. This combination rarely happens in nature, except for nuts and avocados. If nuts fall into a category “Once I start, I can’t stop”, then don’t have them in the house.

With processed snacks this addictive combination occurs with products like chocolate (sugar and fat), crisps (sugar/starch and fat), ice cream (sugar and fat) and chips (starch and fat). Again, try to avoid having them in the house.

Have your vision statement on your fridge and read it every time you go to the fridge.

Place a sticky note on the fridge with your starting weight and where you are now so you can see how far you have come on your journey. Start weight 95 now 78.

Is your TV area too close to the kitchen?

Evening routines can be a good distraction.

Develop an evening routine to prepare your brain to unwind and start melatonin production. It doesn’t need to be hard, it just needs to slow you down, and focus on yourself and not what is happening around you.

Schedule for the same time each night and do it for one month. Some things to try:

  • Different forms of meditation
  • Breath work 
  • Sitting silently and eliminating thoughts
  • Visualisation techniques
  • Listening (with focus) to your favourite music 
  • Take a shower or Epsom salts bath
  • Go to bed earlier, with a book or podcast
  • Spend 5 minutes planning your tomorrow and prioritise the one goal you want to get done

Some questions to reflect on.

  • Why do you think you are night-time snacking?
  • Why is it so hard to make a change?
  • Is it my social or physical environment sabotaging me?
  • What else do you need to know about your behaviour or emotions?

Plan to eat for your goals and eat with intention to build positive eating habits.

Now it’s time to create a plan that works for you. 

If you would like the extra support of a coach who meets with you once a week then contact us today to find out how we can help you.