Sleep and Food: Foods to Avoid Before Sleeping

How to Get to Sleep, Sleep Tips

9 Worst Foods to Eat Before Sleeping

Most people tend to lose sleep because of stressful situations. Your last meal of the day should not be one of the reasons for you to lose sleep.

It is okay to have a bedtime snack before you go to bed as long as the food you consume helps you sleep. When you are looking for a bedtime snack, don’t just grab the first thing that you can think about. What you eat before you go to bed can drastically affect your sleep.

To avoid staying awake for long hours at night, here are nine worst foods to eat before you hit the sack.

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate has become a favorite snack for people but believe it or not, it is one of the worst foods to eat before you go to bed. Dark chocolate has caffeine and theobromine that will keep you tossing and turning for several hours.

Once consumed, dark chocolates release anabolic hormones such as growth hormones and testosterone that can disrupt your sleep. Because of caffeine and theobromine, it can increase arousal and prevents your body from shutting down. It also decreases your ability to develop and to sustain deeper stages of sleep.

Even though dark chocolate does not contain much caffeine like coffee, a little caffeine can still disrupt and halt your sleep.

Sugary Cereal

A bowl of cereal before bedtime is good but not sugary ones.

Your body can digest sugary cereals fast in your system. Since this food contains a lot of sugar, it can spike your blood sugar levels. Sugary cereals can also trigger fat storage and add more weight. It can lead to obesity that can result in more sleep problems such as sleep breathing disorders.

Eating sugary cereal is ideal for breakfast, but it is one of the worst pick me ups during the night since it will make you feel energized and active all night long.

Ice Cream

Ice cream is another food you should avoid before going to sleep. Ice cream is packed with too much sugar that can contribute to fat gain and obesity. Sugar also converts into more energy which will prevent you from sleeping.

The amount of fat in ice cream can also force your digestive system to kick into overdrive. This can lead to sleep disturbances.

Red Meat

Red meat like steak is another food that you should not eat before bedtime. Red meat is high in protein and is harder to break down in the digestive system. Instead of focusing on sleeping, your body will focus on digesting the meat you consume.

Eating red meat before you hit the sack can make you stay wide awake during the night while waiting for your body to completely digest the food you consumed.

Celery

Celery is a favorite snack of people who are on a diet but munching down on celery before going to bed is not ideal. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, celery is a natural diuretic. Diuretic elevates the rate of your urination because it pushes water through your body.

Eating celery will cause you to go back and forth from your bedroom to the bathroom all night long for a pee break.

Fried food

Fried foods are one of the worst foods to eat before going to bed. Fried foods such as potato chips and fries are high in fat and take a long time for your body to digest.

If you go to bed after consuming fried foods, you may struggle to fall asleep due to acid reflux, cramping, and stomach pains.

Pretzel Sticks

It’s hard to resist the temptation of pretzel sticks after a long day, but it is a bad thing to eat before you sleep.

Pretzel sticks are made of white processed flour that has high levels of high glycemic index. It slows your metabolism and encourages fat storage. Pretzel sticks can also spike your blood sugar levels which can disrupt your healthy sleep pattern.

Munching on pretzel sticks before sleep can give you calorie and energy overload, making you stay awake for longer hours during the night.

Pizza

A slice of pizza may satisfy your cravings but eating it as a pre-bed treat is not ideal. The combination of the fat from the cheese plus the acid from the tomato sauce can negatively impact your sleep.

High acid foods can trigger acid reflux, especially if you consume them close to sleep time. This reflux can leave you awake until 2 in the morning.

Eating a slice of pizza can leave you wide awake in the night, leaving you feeling tired the next day.

Spicy Foods

Spicy foods are great to pick me up when it comes to revving up your metabolism, but they are not good to eat before bedtime. Spicy foods can ruin your chances of falling asleep.

Spices such as Tabasco and cayenne pepper have metabolism-boosting properties from capsaicin that makes your blood flowing. Because of its thermogenic properties, it can increase your body’s core temperature.

Since your body’s core temperature naturally decreases before you go to sleep, raising it by eating spicy foods can make you feel more energized and awake that can result in struggles with staying asleep.

Foods high in sugar and fats, as well as heavily processed foods, may cause trouble to your and your sleep. Eating sugary foods can cause spikes in your blood sugar levels and can keep you wide awake at night when consumed before bedtime. It is best to avoid these types of food several hours before you hit the sack.

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