We all know getting a good night sleep is extremely important. There are many factors that go into getting the sleep we need to feel refreshed every day, like having a routine sleep schedule, exercise, a comfortable mattress, and eating right (among many other factors). Sleep is essential for our body’s restoration to be able to carry out our daily tasks, but also to be able to enjoy the things we love!
You might know not to drink coffee or other caffeinated beverages before bedtime, and perhaps a light snack could actually help you fall asleep faster, but here are some foods you should avoid before you go to sleep at night:
- Ice Cream- Well, I had a big bowl of ice cream last night… guess that’s why I tossed and turned all night long! Ice cream contains lots and lots of sugar. Recent studies show that sugar later in the evening can cause nightmares! So that ice cream may be relaxing and soothing when you’re devouring it, but it sure will create chaos in your dreams!
- Celery- While you think you are making a healthy bedtime snack decision (and you are!) it’s not the best snack to have before bed. Celery has a very high water content and acts as a natural diuretic making you have more frequent trips to the bathroom interrupting your sleep.
- Wine- While wine often makes people groggy and sleepy, it actually causes you to wake up numerous times a night. Wine can also cause dehydration therefore decreasing the restorative function of what sleep is supposed to be for. Did I mention that you snore more when you have a little too much wine causing interrupted sleep for your partner as well?!
- Nuts & Nut Butters- Thinking about a PB&J before bed? Think again! Not only is the bread heavy and full of carbohydrates that turn into sugar, but nuts are naturally high in fat. Fattier foods cause your tummy to work harder to digest them which could keep you awake at night. Fatty foods can also cause you to feel a bit sluggish in the morning. While the convenience of whipping up a PB&J before bed sounds enticing, maybe it would be better to spend a few extra minutes to whip up something that won’t leave you as tired in the morning.
- Pizza & Pasta- Both being convenient and easy to make, both also contain a high fat and carbohydrate content which elevates your blood sugar levels and takes longer to digest. Not to mention tomato sauce is high in acidity which increases stomach acid production and can in turn cause heartburn making sleeping uncomfortable.
There are many other foods that are similar to these that you should try to avoid before bedtime for similar reasons: high in sugar, fats, carbs, or water content. Try sticking to other veggies and fruits or maybe plain, home-popped popcorn. Regrettably not the sugary dessert you crave while you watch your favorite nightly television show or movie, but you will probably sleep much better.