Sleep and Food: Foods that help or harm your sleep

Looking for best food for sleep? Read this

What you eat before you sleep can play a significant role in whether you get the rest you need. Luckily, research and studies have shown that there are certain foods that you can eat before bedtime that can help you sleep better. There are also some foods that are best avoided before sleep.

Improve Sleep

Tryptophan-Rich Foods

We’ve all heard of the ability of a glass of warm milk to send us off to dreamland faster. But do you know why? Dairy foods contain tryptophan – a sleep-promoting substance helping you fall asleep faster. Other good sources of tryptophan are nuts and seeds, eggs, bananas, and honey.

Give in to your Carb Craving (Just a Little Bit)

Carbohydrate-rich foods may help you sleep faster and better. So a few good late-night and healthy snacks might include a bowl of cereal and milk, bread, cheese, nuts and crackers.

Snack before you sleep

If you suffer from insomnia, a little food in your stomach before hitting the hay may help you sleep better. Drinking some milk may help, too. But keep the snack limited to a small portion as a heavy meal before bed will be difficult on your digestive system, making you uncomfortable and hindering your sleep.

Limit High-Fat Foods Before Bed

Research has showed that people who eat high-fat foods before bedtime will gain weight and their sleep cycles also tend to get disrupted. Why? Because a heavy meal activates digestion, which can lead to multiple nighttime trips to the bathroom.

Beware of Hidden Caffeine

It’s a no-brainer that caffeine can keep you up rather than wind you down and hence it is a drink to be had in the morning. An evening cup of coffee will, most likely, disrupt your sleep. But don’t forget about the less obvious caffeine sources such as chocolate, cola, and tea. Even decaf coffee has a trace of caffeine in it, but not enough to be a major sleep hindrance. However, for better sleep, cut all caffeine intake from your diet 4 to 6 hours before bedtime.

Say No to the Nightcap

Alcohol, although may help you fall asleep faster, will not let you sleep well. It will wake you up often, tossing and turning, and may even cause you to have headaches, night sweats and even bad dreams/nightmares. Pairing each alcoholic drink with a glass of water to dilute the alcohol’s effects will help immensely. But for a good night’s sleep, it’s better to avoid alcohol 4 to 6 hours before bedtime.

Beware of Heavy, Spicy Foods

Never sleep/lie down with a full belly as that can make you uncomfortable since the digestive system slows down when you sleep. This can also lead to heartburn, as can spicy cuisine. If you’re indulging in a heavy meal, make sure to finish it at least 4 hours before bedtime.

Cut the Fluids Before Bed

Staying hydrated and drinking plenty of water/fluids throughout the day is great for your body, but ensure to cut down on water intake before bed. You don’t want to have to keep getting up to go to the bathroom after you turn in.

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