8 unexpected foods that can rob you of sleep
Are you having difficulty falling or staying asleep? Your diet could be to blame.
Dana Artinyan, a registered dietitian at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center in Chicago, shares some foods you should avoid eating before bed.
1. Dark chocolate – While antioxidant rich, dark chocolate contains caffeine, which can keep you up at night.
2. Tea and hot cocoa – “For many people, a cup of tea before bed can help them relax and rewind,” says Artinyan. “Just be sure to choose a caffeine-free herbal tea such as chamomile or peppermint tea.”
3. High-fat foods – Foods high in fat can take longer to digest, putting your body to work and interfering with sleep.
4. Candy – A handful of sugary snacks can lead to blood sugar spikes, making it difficult to stay asleep.
5. Citrus – The acidity in citrus can cause heartburn, resulting in discomfort that can make sleeping difficult.
6. Soda – Soda is another sneaky container of caffeine. Even soft drinks such as root beer or lemon lime soda can keep you up at night.
7. Alcohol – Alcohol diminishes the quality of REM sleep, which can impair memory and motor skills.
8. Large meals – Your digestive system slows down while you sleep. If you eat too much before bed, your body will be too busy digesting and not sleeping.
“If you are feeling hungry before bed, choose a snack with a blend of protein, fat and carbohydrates such as a piece of string cheese with an apple or a banana and peanut butter. The protein/fat/carbohydrate nutrient blend helps stabilize blood sugar during the night.”
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