After staying on track with your diet all day long you get home and that’s when it hits you – the craving from hell. Studies have shown that a lack of sleep or just plain fatigue leads to more snacking and increased consumption of carbs as opposed to healthy fats and proteins. But the evening is a crucial time – you’re heading into a long fast and key hormones like growth hormone peak overnight. Here are some tips on how to combat the cravings while also supporting your muscle-building goals.
1 CASEIN CRAVING
Casein is ideal for evening consumption because it is slow to digest, which means that your body will get a slow trickle of amino acids while you sleep. So why not make a casein ice cream or pudding? Simply add some water to 1-2 scoops of casein and then mix until viscous. To make it even more tasty you can also add some nonfat Greek yogurt. Then, just put it into the fridge or freezer for a couple of hours and voila – casein dessert that actually supports muscle building. Aim for 20-40 grams of casein per serving.
2 JELLO JACKED
Another use for casein is to mix it into Jello. Simply add a couple of scoops of casein – or even whey, if you must – to the mix and prepare as directed. If you want to go a step further, you can also add some powdered BCAAs to give you a super mix that gets you swole while you snooze. Experiment with your ratios until you find the right consistency for you. The goal should be 15-25 grams of protein per serving.
3 FIBER UP
You may already know that slowing digestion is good for stabilizing blood sugar and keeping cravings at bay. And soluble fiber is ideal for this because it delays the emptying of your stomach and keeps you feeling fuller, longer. So why not put this asset in play while you sleep? Great snack sources before hitting the sheets include apples, pears, oatmeal, flax, celery and carrots. But don’t ruin your indulgence with sugars, sweeteners, fatty dressings like ranch or blue cheese. Keep your focus on what the goal really is with consuming these foods – slowing digestion for your nighttime fast.