Eight Filling Midnight Snacks Under 100 Calories
By Karen Reed
Managing Editor at Positive Health Wellness
Don’t you just hate waking up in the middle of the night hungry? You don’t want to spend the calories on something that will tide you over until your next meal, but you just can’t get back to sleep.
Sometimes, you need to stay up for a few hours waiting for friends or because you have some coursework to do. The last thing you want is to snack throughout the night and end up gaining weight. After all, you don’t change your food choices throughout the next day to make up for the midnight snack.
It’s time to find a midnight snack that will be good for your waistline. Here are eight extremely filling options that will only cost you up to 100 calories.
Opt for Vegetables of Any Kind
Vegetables are your friends when it comes to midnight snacks. Yes, you’ll hear this a lot about vegetables, but you want to choose them before any other snack. They are the best for your overall health, as well as your waistline.
It doesn’t matter which vegetable you eat either. A cup of the majority of vegetables contains less than 100 calories.
But are vegetables that filling? After all, they are side options when it comes to a meal.
Well, yes, vegetables are filling. They’re full of fiber and water.
The water will help to fill your stomach and trick you into thinking you’re full. It fills your stomach up without adding any extra calories. It’s the fiber that gives you the energy and the sustained feeling of being full. It takes time for the body to break down the fiber in your digestive system. You can usually tide yourself over until your next meal with the help of one portion of vegetables.
The next time you’re pulling an all-nighter, stock up on some carrot sticks, chopped broccoli, and some cauliflower. You can also choose some peppers and cherry tomatoes. Mixing these together will help to curb some sweet cravings, make you feel satisfied, and add plenty of nutrients to your body.
Baby carrots are certainly among the best options. There are just 35 calories in nine carrots. You won’t feel the need to consume anything else.
Watch out if you’re going to add dip to your vegetables. This will take your calorie count up, so you’ll want to find out exactly how many calories are in your dip of choice. Hummus or salsa can be your best options.
Opt Specifically for Radishes
Technically, radishes are a vegetable, but they deserve a mention of their own. They are the perfect low-calorie midnight snack. Each radish is just one calorie. That means you can have 100 radishes that will equal just 100 calories.
Chances are you’re not going to want 100 radishes. The slightly spicier taste will stop you from wanting to eat too many. You’ll also get plenty of fiber to help you feel fuller sooner than with other snacks in your kitchen cupboard.
Opt for a little sea salt with your radishes. This can take away some of the spicy bites that radishes have. Compared to other salts, sea salt is a healthier option, without being too dehydrating.
You’ll get plenty of other health benefits of radishes. One of these benefits comes with the spicy taste. The heat of the radishes will increase your body temperature, which helps to increase your metabolism rate.
Grab a Cheese String
Do you think that cheese is a no-go as a midnight snack? Well, you can eat some string cheese without spending more than 100 calories. Eating one cheese string is perfect– weighing in at just 85 calories
While getting those calories, you’re stocking up on plenty of protein. In fact, there are seven grams of protein in one cheese string. It takes the body time to break down protein and convert it into energy for the muscles. This means you feel fuller longer.
Of course, there are other health benefits to the cheese string, such as the calcium. You’ll have healthier bones and teeth by opting for a cheese string instead of chocolate or chips. In fact, you get 20% of your daily recommended amount of calcium from a cheese string!
Other types of cheese can be good (depending on the amount you eat), but there is a special benefit in cheese strings. You just can’t help but pull it to pieces. The child in you knows that you can pull it apart string by string to eat it. This helps you eat the cheese string much slower than you would a block of normal cheese, so you give your stomach a chance to tell your brain that you’re full. That way there’s less chance of consuming too many calories.
Make a Bowl of Popcorn
When you want to grab a handful of chips, vegetables and cheese strings aren’t exactly going to hit the spot. Rather than adding empty calories, why not opt for some popcorn? It’s best to make your own or get a plain bag, rather than buying the sweet, salty, or buttery options.
Air-popped popcorn is quick to make and full of air! Three cups of it will give you less than 100 calories. You’ll also get plenty of fiber and protein in your snack, especially if you opt for whole grain kernels.
Popcorn is the perfect option when you need something to satisfy you while watching a movie. Just make a promise to yourself (and stick to it) that you’ll only have the one helping of popcorn. It is very easy to consume more than you should because of mindless eating.
If you’re not fond of plain popcorn, add a few seasonings from your cupboard. Italian seasoning and cumin are among the top choices. Experiment with a few seasonings to create a delicious flavoring without all the calories that the butter, salt, and sugar have.
Choose Greek or Natural Yogurt
Yogurt can make an excellent snack, but you need to choose the right type. You want one that is either Greek or all-natural, and make sure there’s no added sugar. There will be some natural sugars in yogurt due to the dairy product used to create it.
Greek yogurt is by far the best option. Avoid those with fruit flavorings, as they tend to have extra sugars and extra calories. Six ounces of plain, fat-free Greek yogurt has less than 100 calories.
As with the cheese string, you’re not just benefiting from the low-calorie count. Yogurts are extremely filling thanks to the protein. That six ounces of yogurt is made up of six grams of protein. The protein fuels the muscles and it breaks down slowly in the body.
You can use a little yogurt as a dip for your vegetable sticks if you’d like! If you want some flavorings, make use of seasonings and herbs for something a little more savory.
Make Some Oatmeal
It’s time to pull out the oats and make some porridge out of them. To help keep the calories to a minimum, make them with water.
If you want something extremely quick, you can choose a packet of instant plain oatmeal. You will get around 100 calories in a bowl, and the portion size is already worked out for you. However, you can end up with fewer calories by pouring your own oats. Just make sure you measure them to avoid going over around 30g.
Oats are packed with fiber. As with vegetables, the fiber will help to make the oats one of the most filling snacks. There’s a reason oats are used as a breakfast ingredient.
Another benefit is that the oatmeal is hot. This can make it more satisfying and filling, especially in the middle of the winter when you have most of your project deadlines!
Oats on their own can taste a little bland. You’ll need to find another way to brighten up the taste. Opt for some nutmeg or cinnamon for zero extra calories but a lot of extra taste!
Grab a Couple of Turkey Slices
Turkey is the best poultry to eat when you want something filling. You know that feeling you get at Thanksgiving or Christmas after your turkey dinner? You fall into a sleepy state. It’s the turkey that’s doing this to you.
Turkey is full of tryptophan, which is a sleep-inducing hormone. The tryptophan tells your body that you’re completely satisfied and that you couldn’t possibly eat another bite.
At the same time, turkey is low in calories yet high in protein. When you eat the white part of the meat, you also avoid the fat, and be aware—the skin holds the majority of the fat! With the protein, you also get the macronutrient that tells your body it’s feeling full for hours to come.
When you’re struggling to find a filling midnight snack, pull out a couple of slices of turkey. You’ll get more than enough to eat with just a couple of slices, which gives you around 100 calories.
Turkey is an excellent option when you’re trying hard to get back to sleep. The tryptophan will help you fall right back asleep after your midnight snack.
Try to get the real, white turkey slices. Avoid the processed options that are used for sandwiches and that are found in packets. While they are low in calories, they don’t have all the health benefits. They also aren’t as filling as real turkey slices. The best way to have turkey slices is to cook your turkey yourself and cut it up. Turkey slices on a covered plate will last a week or so in the fridge.
Grab the Jar of Olives
It’s time to pull out the olives from your cupboard. If you haven’t bought any olives yet, go get some, so you always have a jar ready for your midnight snacking. You get just 40 calories from 10 small olives. So if you want to eat the whole 100 calories, you can enjoy 25 olives.
There is a high chance that you won’t need all 25 olives. Just 10 will be filling enough, especially if you consume them slowly. Due to the low calories, you can also enjoy some vegetables with your olives.
Why are olives so filling? It’s all in the fat. Many people view fat as bad—and as the reason for gaining weight. Your body needs some fat to help support your metabolism, but it needs the right fats. The great news is that olives are full of healthy, monounsaturated fats. They’re the same fats that you’ll get in olive oil!
Healthy fats are like proteins and fiber. They take much longer than carbohydrates to break down in the body, therefore making you feel fuller longer. There are many other health benefits to eating olives, such as the antioxidants. There’s a reason the Mediterranean diet recommends olives on a regular basis. The antioxidants are excellent for cancer-fighting, anti-aging, and inflammation-fighting benefits.
Grab a toothpick to eat your olives. Enjoy one at a time and savor the taste.
You can enjoy both green and black olives for the health benefits. Just watch out for those that are stuffed!
Snacking Isn’t Off Limits
The great thing about eating healthily is that snacking isn’t completely off limits. You just need to make sure you eat the right types of snacks. You need to find snacks that are low in calories but high in nutrients. The above options are certainly ones that you can enjoy without worry.
You can eat just one type of snacks if you’d like. This is the best way to keep your snacks to less than 100 calories. However, you can also mix them. You’ll need to know the exact amount of calories in all the servings when it comes to mixing and matching.
It’s time to stock your cupboards up with the right ingredients. Get your vegetables, olives, and cheese strings right now. You will not regret having them when you want midnight snacks that are excellent for your waistline and health.
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