Night time is a very tempting time to eat. We often get little cravings and feel like having a little snack or a small meal between dinner and brushing out teeth. In essence, there is nothing wrong with eating a small something before going to bed, but in so doing, it pays to know what we should and what we shouldn’t eat to get a good night’s sleep.
Foods that help you sleep:
Cherries are some of the only foods naturally containing the chemical melatonin, which is responsible for configuring our ‘internal clock’. A study has found that adults suffering from insomnia and drank cherry juice before bed reported a marked improvement in the quality and length of their sleep time.
As a rule, carbs are a pretty good food option before going to sleep.If you make a habit of eating cereal with milk, you’re twice the winner, because milk is also considered a food that promotes good sleep. Quinoa, buckwheat and barley are also recommended carbs to eat before going to bed.
Bananas are rich in magnesium and potassium, minerals known to be muscle relaxants. They are also a good source of carbs, which, as we’ve mentioned, promote a better quality of sleep..
Like the banana, the sweet potato also contains carbs combined with potassium that relaxes your muscles. As a food belonging to the orange family, sweet potatoes also contains carotenoids and powerful antioxidants that will promote your general health.
Foods you should avoid before sleep:
The large amount of fat found in hamburgers is a known ‘sleep killer’. The fat encourages the stomach to pump more acid out, which can cause heartburn. Of course, these heartburns may really get in the way of falling asleep, not to mention the stomach needs to work extra hours to digest this heavy meal, which will also harm the quality of your sleep.
Although it may put us to sleep faster, all types of alcohol go through a fast metabolic process in our digestive system, causing us to wake up several times during the night, even if we don’t remember it the next day.
Coffee is meant to wake us up in the morning. It doesn’t actually make us more alert, it works as an antagonist to sleep hormones, and so is, of course, one of the worst things you can put in your body in the hours before you go to bed. Of course, people have a radically different reaction to caffeine, and so the length of time you should keep between drinking coffee and going to sleep may change from person to person.
Other than the vast amounts of sugar, causing your blood sugar levels to spike, chocolate also contains caffeine and is considered a food that keeps you awake
Any spicy food will detract from the quality of our sleep. A recent Australian study found that men who consumed tabasco sauce or mustard before sleep had trouble falling asleep as well as experiencing a low quality of sleep. Hot food can also cause heartburn, which, as we’ve explained, is terrible for a good night’s sleep.
Recent Australian study found that men who consumed tabasco sauce or mustard before sleep had trouble falling asleep as well as experiencing a low quality of sleep. Hot food can also cause heartburn, which, as we’ve explained, is terrible for a good night’s sleep.
While the above article guides you to eating healthier, there is no substitute for customized professional advice given by a qualified nutritionist. We urge you to speak to your personal dietician or if you need help, contact a nutritionist at Qua Nutrition.
You can contact us at 080 3232 9292 or log on to www.quanutrition.com to Book An Appointment.