If you're trying to lose weight and like to snack at night, you can’t go wrong with a healthy helping of whole fruit. Not only is fruit low in calories, but its natural sweetness may help satisfy your after-dinner sweet tooth. Any fruit makes a good choice; the trick is to mind your portions and keep your overall calories in check.
There's nothing wrong with snacking at night. The problem is late-night snackers tend to eat more overall calories, according to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and this may lead to weight gain. Even eating too many fruit calories can cause you to gain weight. So you first need to know and track your daily calorie needs for weight loss, which typically ranges from 1,200 to 1,800 calories a day depending on your gender and activity level, and saving about 200 calories for your nighttime fruit snack.
Go Large With Melons
If you're looking for a large nighttime snack that won't overdo it on calories, go for melons such as watermelon, cantaloupe or honeydew. These water-rich fruits are very low in calories, which means you can eat a lot and still stay within your 200-calorie snack limit. You can enjoy 3 cups of honeydew or cantaloupe balls for just under 200 calories. Or, even more filling, have 4 cups of watermelon balls for 184 calories.
Berries also make a good nighttime snack choice. They're not only low in calories but also filled with fiber and antioxidants. Indulge on 4 cups of sliced strawberries for 196 calories. Raspberries are also a good choice with 192 calories in a 3-cup serving. Raspberries are very high in fiber, however, with 24 grams in that same 3-cup serving, and if you're not used to eating that much fiber, you might experience abdominal discomfort. So go slow starting with 1 cup at a time, and be sure to drink plenty of water.
Apples and Pears
Apples and pears also make good nighttime snack options when trying to lose weight. There's no need for any special preparation, and the crunch of the skin and meat of the fruit can make it a very satisfying choice. One medium apple or pear has about 100 calories. You can add 1 ounce of low-fat cheddar cheese to your apple or pear snack if you enjoy the balance of sweet and savory for an additional 100 calories.