5 Eating Habits To Avoid Before You Sleep

5 Eating Habits To Avoid Before You Sleep

sleepHealth

Feeling tired but can’t sleep? You might not realize that your eating habits could be to blame, as the foods we do (or don’t) eat can mess with our sleep cycles. Some things might seem obvious, like not drinking caffeine or alcohol too close to bed, but other tips might surprise you. Read on to find out what eating habits to avoid before you sleep.

5 Eating Habits You Need To Avoid Before You Sleep

1. Eating dinner too early.

Just like you don’t want to feel too full when you go to sleep, you also don’t want to feel hungry, either. If you eat dinner at 5PM and don’t go to sleep until midnight or later, you might find your stomach growling for more food as you try to fall asleep.

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To correct this, just prepare a small snack for yourself before bed, such as a glass of plant-based milk or a small protein shake, as protein will help your body to relax and become sleepy because of the tryptophan present. Try not to make the snack above 250 calories, as you don’t want to feel too full for bedtime. Avoid eating too late, however, as this could cause indigestion and heartburn.

2. Drinking coffee too late in the day.

Did you know it takes six hours for your body to eliminate just half of the caffeine you consume? This means that drinking coffee even six hours before bed can keep you awake at night. Caffeine can also cause anxiety in some people, which can contribute to insomnia. Try to drink your coffee in the morning and early afternoon, and if you have trouble sleeping at night, avoid drinking your afternoon cups of coffee.

3. Having a big dinner.

Ideally, you want to digest your food BEFORE you sleep, as this process can keep you awake at night. If you eat too large a meal before bed, your body will have to work on two processes at once; sleeping and digesting, which takes away from the energy your body needs to sleep. Try to have a bigger breakfast and lunch, and prepare a lighter dinner so that you can fall asleep easier at night.

4. Not eating enough foods that make you sleepy.

Our bodies need both serotonin and melatonin in order to sleep, so consider eating foods with these chemicals in order to get a good night’s rest. Many fruits and vegetables contain these chemicals, and you could even make a smoothie containing tart cherry juice concentrate, bananas, kiwis, and ice. Bananas contain magnesium and potassium, which help induce sleep, tart cherry juice concentrate can help increase melatonin (which also aids in sleep), and kiwis raise serotonin levels in the body. Serotonin does not make you sleepy, but it can calm you down before bed.

Related article: Doing This ONE Thing Makes It Easy To Eat Healthy

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