It’s 11pm and you had dinner at 6pm. You tiptoe to the fridge with a rumbling tummy and try to find a snack. The only problem is, you don’t want to destroy your diet – you’ve been so good all day.

I think we can all relate to having the late-night munchies, but did you know that depriving yourself of that snack might actually be BAD for your health?

For starters, a hungry tummy is likely to make you restless, which causes poor sleep patterns. Studies show that sleeping fewer than five hours a night can actually increase your chances of gaining weight. Huh. Who’d have thought that eating could help you lose weight.

If that wasn’t enough reason to indulge in a pre-bedtime snack, research also shows that sleep deprivation triggers hormones that make you hungrier and more likely to make unhealthy food choices for breakfast.

But does that mean just any food will do for a snack? Not quite. You’ll want to pick a food with a high protein content to “stimulate protein synthesis in the body and helps to grow muscle.”

Here’s some ideal bedtime snacks that will help you lose weight and boost your overall health:

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