WLS Real Life – Night Time Snacking

Steph Wagner

October 28, 2017

Night Time Snacking Struggles


Night time snacking habits are hard to break and weight loss surgery doesn't change that! How to focus on long term success after bariatric surgery #weightlosssurgery #bariatric #gastricsleeve #gastricbypass

Staying on track after weight loss surgery when old habits die hard


It happens to the best of us

Night time snacking is a REAL struggle for everyone, and post-ops are not excluded.

If you were a snacker before your weight-loss surgery, you know full well the surgery itself can’t fix that forever.

Oh sure, early out of surgery you are so FOCUSED that you stay on the plan. You’re too scared to venture off! The further you get from the operation day, life happens, a little here and a little there. Your spouse or child is snacking at night, you’re feeling bored or tired…or STRESSED and the slippery slope beings.

Night time snacking is hard during every season of the year. Although, for most of us, it’s the time of year when the darkness creeps in earlier in the evening and the chill in the air gets colder and colder. We find ourselves inside, bored, and looking for something to bring us some comfort at the end of the day.

For better or worse, habits are powerful

Routines, habits, whatever you may call them are absolutely engrained into our brains. The pathways of our thoughts go to the places they have been trained to go! No offense to my sweet husband, but his path to the pantry might as well be paved in our house. I can usually find crumbs in front of those cabinet doors :)

Breaking a habit the mind could do in it’s sleep is no easy feat. Ridding carbohydrates running through your body is no easy feat. Cutting out night time snacking for long-term…is just NOT going to be easy. I’m not surpising anyone with this fact!


Night time snacking habits are hard to break and weight loss surgery doesn't change that! How to focus on long term success after bariatric surgery #weightlosssurgery #bariatric #gastricsleeve #gastricbypass


How we break the mold is different for each of us, it possibly involves a low calorie beverage and a simple mindless task. At the end of the day, you’re tired and your brain is too. It’s looking to take it easy and wind down before hitting the pillow.

The tips you’re after

First, constantly remind yourself that the first three to five days of ridding your body of starchy foods and sweets are the absolute hardest.

You will feel like you are STARVING because your body is mad that you are withholding the addictive carbohydrate ‘hit.’ If you stay strong for a week, your hunger levels will become significantly more manageable. Hang in there. I explain this in more detail in this video “The Truth About Carbs.”

Members to FoodCoach.Me engage often in our online community and when asked how they stay on track during the tempting evening hours, here is what they shared:


Some nights are easier because we are busy, things are going on, we can keep our minds off of food. Other nights we know we aren’t hungry but we have to take control of our thoughts constantly!

Better options to keep on hand

For the moments you are feeling weak and instead of skipping a snack altogether, you’d like to just keep it a good choice, consider keeping high protein bars or snacks on hand.

Bariatric Choice is an online nutrition supplement store offering protein bars or snacks that I’ve often recommended and used personally for a high protein alternative to sweets or salty snacks. Disclaimer: Bariatric Food Source compensated me for linking to their site however my opinions are my own.

Protein bars can be a great way to enjoy something sweet but is filling, portion controlled and balanced in protein and carbohydrates. Here are two bars that I’ve both enjoyed myself and are popular among patients:

Caramel Crunch Protein Bar with high protein for bariatric surgery patients endorsed by FoodCoachMe and for sale on Bariatric Food Source Protein pretzel twists for bariatric surgery patients endorsed by FoodCoachMe sponsored by Bariatric Food Source

Purchase Snacks Here

Action Steps:

Find your motivation – what will REALLY motivate you to put the hard work into changing your night time routine?

Seek accountability – who will you check in with or who will ask you if you followed through with your plan? That’s what we do with each other here on FoodCoach.Me

Have alternative activities READY to go – instead of scratching your head in the moment of wanting to snack, trying to think of what to do with yourself, stay one step ahead and make a plan for what sounds fun or relaxing in the evenings. Do you like crafts? Have something in the house you wanted to paint or decorate? Been meaning to call a friend or family member to catch up?

Have alternative snacks READY to go – if it is not true hunger you are feeling, do your best to re-direct. If you are struggling and want something anyway, consider shopping for some back up snacks on Bariatric Choice (for a sweet treat I recommend the Caramel Crunch Bar. For a salty and crunchy snack I recommend Barbecue Crunch-O’s or Protein Pretzels)

Plan ahead – Look at what nights you are going to be at home and pencil in these activities to get you excited knowing you have fun things planned AND to keep you from being caught off guard by bored, night time snacks. Plus you get to do things you’ve always wanted to!

⇒ If you haven’t already join the FoodCoachMe membership to connect with other post-ops and gain support form a bariatric dietitian and coach. All the recipes, meal plans, challenges and community are instantly unlocked when you join today!

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