It seems no matter how much we have eaten or how full we are, there's always room for dessert.The bad news is that many desserts like ice cream and cookies are loaded with calories and fat.If you indulge in these desserts too often you'll pack on the pounds.

Here are my top 5 suggestions for curbing those late night cravings:



Brush your teeth:

After finishing your meal, use a minty mouthwash or brush with a minty toothpaste.If that's not feasible, pop some sugar-free mints or gum into your mouth.Studies show that a minty flavors will curb your craving for something sweet.For example, have you ever drunk orange juice right after brushing your teeth in the morning? Yuck! Mints and sweets just don't mix.


Keep low-calorie, sugar-free dessert options available:

Sugar-free popsicles, fudgesicles, pudding and gelatin are low-calorie ways to satisfy your sweet tooth.


Try fruit:

Fruit is not only sweet, but is packed with vitamins and minerals and has only 60 calories per serving, 0 grams of fat, and it's a good way to incorporate fiber into your diet.


Portion control treats:

If you MUST have something sweet and none of the above suggestions work, try individually wrapped portion-controlled candies.Hershey's Kisses, mini York Peppermint Patties or "fun-size" candy bars are pre-portioned, which can help to prevent you from devouring more calories than you realize.


Eat less sugar and refined carbohydrates throughout the day:


Like any other habit, the craving for something sweet may come as a result of being trained to expect it after a meal.Try breaking the habit for one week and you'll be guaranteed to have drastically diminished your after-meal sweet craving.

Tanya Zuckerbrot, MS, RD

is a nutritionist and the creator of The F-Factor DietaC/, an innovative nutritional program she has used for more than ten years to provide hundreds of her clients with all the tools they need to achieve easy weight loss and maintenance, improved health and well-being. For more information log onto