Bedtime hunger can make it difficult to sleep, but so can going to bed on a full stomach. Here’s how you can fix this issue.
Feeling hungry before bedtime can be annoying, especially when you don’t want to disrupt your sleep with a full stomach. Getting hungry before bedtime can mean a variety of things; it can mean you’re used to snacking before bed or that you haven’t consumed enough calories throughout the day.
While everyone has their bedtime habits, the majority of dietitians recommend scheduling your last heavy meal at least for two hours before bedtime. This is advised to prevent stomach discomfort and trouble sleeping, especially since the stomach takes a couple of hours to digest food.
Here’s what you can do to prevent getting hungry right before bed:
It all starts with breakfast
Your nutrition isn’t based on one meal only. It’s based on the number of calories you consume throughout your day, with each of the meals and snacks having a caloric and filling purpose.
Breakfast is often called the most important meal of the day, usually since it sets the tone for the rest of the day. If you have a nutritious breakfast, where you ingest lots of protein and fiber, you’ll likely feel less hungry later on in the day. The contrary is also true; if you have a breakfast made up of sugary and empty calories, you’ll likely be hungry and craving more of that type of nutrition for the remainder of the day.
Meal plan correctly
If you plan your meals correctly and eat the right stuff in the afternoon and evening, you likely won’t be crazy hungry by the time you go to bed and have had your dinner. Make sure to purchase plenty of healthy snacks and meals, that way you have your fridge stocked up with the necessities. Proteins and fibers are nutritious and can help you feel full for longer periods of time. For example, meals like oatmeal, beans, chicken, veggies, and nuts are all very healthy and filling.
Is it hunger or a craving?
Your stomach not only processes hunger, it processes other emotions, like anxiety and discomfort, which can sometimes feel like hunger. Emotions like boredom can also present themselves as hunger, which is why it helps to know what you’re feeling and to try to process it accordingly. You can also experience a craving for sweets, which can be easily satisfied by listening to your body and giving it what it wants. But it all takes some practice and time, so it’s important to learn what your body is feeling and to nourish it as best as you can.