10 Surprising Foods That Could Be Secretly Sabotaging Your Sleep
Sleep is your body’s way of naturally rejuvenating and energizing, so you can stay productive, alert, and healthy during your waking hours. If you don’t get enough sleep, then you’ll be more likely to move through the day tired and drowsy, and also be more prone to illness and disease.
If you’ve been having trouble getting to sleep easily at night, or wake throughout the night, then you might be surprised to learn that the foods you’re eating before bed could be the culprit responsible for sabotaging your sleep.
According to AARP, these are ten of the most common foods that could be disturbing your peaceful slumber at night:
Celery is a very healthy vegetable that is great for low-calorie snacking, but munching on crunchy celery stalks too close to bedtime can cause you to wake up for more frequent visits to the bathroom. Celery is a food that contains a lot of water, which will act as a diuretic in your body and flush out fluids and toxins. While this is great for your body, it can be very disruptive to your sleep if you eat celery too close to bedtime.
Tomatoes are loaded with nutrients, including an amino acid called tyramine. This amino acid occurs naturally in tomatoes, and controls blood pressure in the body. It also stimulates brain activity, delays sleep, and is a known migraine trigger, according to WedMD.
3. Cheese or Fried Food
Eating cheese or fried foods that are higher in fat content can take longer for your body to break down and digest. If you eat foods like cheese, pizza, or fried chicken before bed, you can experience abdominal discomforts that might awake you as your body works to break down the fats while you sleep. If you want to eat something with a higher fat content, make sure to do so at least three hours before bed so you have time to digest and sleep peacefully.
While a glass of wine, or a drink close to bedtime helps you relax and feel sleepy, it will actually impact the quality of sleep you get after imbibing. Even though you may fall asleep easily, alcohol delays and diminishes the amount REM sleep you get. This results in sleep that isn’t as restful, and you may wake up in the night, or not feel as rested as usual in the morning.
Beans are filled with fiber, and can be a good building block of a healthy diet. However, beans take longer to digest, and can cause excess gas as your digestion breaks them down. Eating beans before bed can cause you to lose sleep due to a stomach rumbles and gas releases.
6. Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate may seem like a great, heart-healthy dessert to indulge in on occasion, and you would not be wrong. However, chocolate contains caffeine, which can keep you awake if you treat yourself to some chocolate too close to bedtime.
Candy before bed can cause your blood sugar to rise and fall very quickly. These sugar surges might make you too jittery and wired to get to sleep easily, or could disrupt your sleep as your body adjusts your blood sugar levels. These spikes and plummets during the night can make for restless sleep, so skip the sugary bedtime snack, or give yourself a treat at least three hours before bed instead.
8. Spicy food
If you like your dinner to have a spicy kick, make sure you don’t eat your zesty meal too close to your bedtime. Spicy food can be hard on your digestion, and cause late night heartburn or indigestion that can wake you up, and disrupt a good night’s sleep.
9. Steak or Roast Beef
Marbled meats that are high in protein and fat, such as steak or roast beef take more time to break down and digest. Eating such meats before bed can lead to a night of restless sleep if your body is working hard to digest when it should be resting.
Broccoli is very nutritious and loaded with healthy fibers. If you eat broccoli too close to bedtime, your sleep can be interrupted with bouts of gas as your body works to break down this fibrous food. Eat your veggies, but make sure you have a couple hours to digest them fully before you go to sleep for the night.