Trying to lose weight can be quite difficult because it involves a lot of work and it requires one to follow strict rules, especially where food is concerned. Controlling the amount of food can be very hard, especially when cravings strike and the tummy is calling.

People can have all kinds of craving throughout the day, but night cravings are the worst because after the meal comes sleep and the body is no longer active. It is for this reason that night cravings, become a problematic issue to anyone trying to lose weight.

Why do we feel hungry?

The body utilizes food to be able to function. Many of the physiological functions of the body depend on the availability of food, so the body needs it. Hunger is the nagging feeling that everyone feels when food is being sought after. At times, the hunger pang is signifying a critical need but at times it is more excessive than anything, especially in the case of night cravings.

Within the body, there is a built-in internal clock called the “circadian system” that controls hunger, as well as cravings for sweets, salty and starchy foods. It is found out that this built-in system is responsible for the cravings experienced at night, and it is explained further in the following points:

  • Sugar tolerance is increasingly impaired at night.
  • Artificial light, used at night, causes people to stay up later than they ought to. Staying up late makes one crave more food (Read “Insufficient Sleep Can Cause Unnecessary Weight Gain“) and an increase in calorie-intake is followed.

How to avoid feeling hungry

If a person is often dealing with nightly cravings, the following are some effective ways to combat it:

  1. Go to sleep early – The most effective solution for night cravings is to sleep early. Staying up late gives room to cravings and giving in to cravings, but if sleep is met at an earlier time, the whole problem is solved altogether.
  2. If you should take something, take something healthy – Cravings can be very tough to fight, so if giving in is the only way to soothe the stomach choose a fruit, warm milk or tea, instead. Fruits are healthy and high in fiber and milk or tea will help bring some soothing.
  3. Read a book, watch a movie or listen to music – This may not work for all, but enjoying some of these activities can usually take one’s mind off from food.
  4. Drink water before going to bed – Water is very healthy and is contains zero calories. Night cravings can be avoided easily when more water is taken in before going to bed. It give a feeling a fullness, solving hunger, and dealing well with any cravings.
  5. Eat enough during the day – Often, when one is seen having unhealthy cravings at night it is because not much is taken in during the day. Eating healthy, especially more protein and fiber, should keep one satiated for longer and well into the night so that cravings can be avoided.
  6. Record meals – As a nagging reminder of what is being eaten, one can choose to record everything that is taken. This does not only work by monitoring what is being eaten, but the journal supports calorie counting and so forth.
  7. Keep food out of the house – If snacking is a common problem at night, then do not store snacks at home because keeping the temptation away is the most effective solution to night cravings.

Craving for food at night is not a new thing. It is a common problem and many overweight issues can be rooted to the careless consumption of snacks at night. Dieting and weight loss is very dependent on control and claiming victory over night cravings will surely save the day.