If you’re craving for a bedtime snack, don’t just grab the first thing that comes to your mind because they will most likely be the unhealthy choices. While light, carby snacks like crackers or an apple might actually help you achieve the deepest slumber, there are certain foods that belong to the naughty list that you should avoid.
- Coffee and Soda
You probably know that coffee and soda are potent stimulants that can keep your central nervous system alert for hours. Depending on how much you consume, caffeine’s effects can last anywhere from 8 to 14 hours.
Like coffee and dark sodas, chocolate also contains caffeine which boosts alertness, and decreases the body’s ability to sustain deeper stages of sleep. An average 2-ounce, 70 percent chocolate treat has caffeine amounts that is equivalent to a regular cup of joe.
As surprising as it seems, the nightcap is actually on the naughty list. Wine, although it helps you relax, prevents the body from fully achieving the REM (Rapid Eye Movement), the state of sleep where truly restful sleep and dreaming occurs.
- Fatty Foods
High fat foods take longer to fully digest. Ice cream, burgers, and loaded burritos can cause bloating and indigestion. Don’t expect a good night’s rest if you went to bed full of fatty foods.
- High sugar cereals
Most cereals you’ll find at the supermarket are loaded with sugar which causes the blood sugar to spike and crash. However, you can make an exception with cereal brands that have less than five grams of sugar per serving.
- Hot peppers and spicy foods
Spicy foods are excellent for getting your metabolism up and running, that’s why it’s great for weight loss. But, if your goal is to achieve restful sleep, you might want to stay away from spices like cayenne and tabasco because these ingredients contain capsaicin, which helps raise the body temperature that will make you feel more awake.
- A high protein or high fat dinner
Health experts believe that protein-rich meal produces less tryptophan. This amino acid is a precursor to serotonin – the calming hormone. A decrease in tryptophan actually reduces serotonin, which hinders the body to indulge in a deep sleep.
- Dried fruit
Because dried fruits are mostly high in fiber and have low water content, eating them before bedtime can result to gas and cramps.
Chugging too much water before bedtime, you will find yourself waking up multiple times at night. Disturbance in yourself can make you feel tired in the morning rather than feeling refreshed. It’s best to consume your most of your water during the day and less at night.
Having pizza for dinner may leave you feeling bad in the morning, especially if you are acidic. Tomato-rich foods can trigger acid reflux that will result into an irritable stomach.
Did you know that peppermint is a heartburn trigger? You might want to switch out your nightly peppermint tea with a more soothing tea like chamomile.
- Fries and Ketchup
Fries are greasy and ketchup is acidic. Consuming this fast food combo at night is not the best dinner option if you want uninterrupted sleep.
Are you guilty of eating any of these sleep interrupting foods?