The CDC recommends that adults get at least seven hours of sleep a night for optimum health and well-being. And it’s not just about feeling tired and cranky, because chronic sleep leads to a host of chronic health problems, including high blood pressure, obesity, stroke, depression, and diabetes, according to deprivation can a study published May 2017 in the natural science of sleep.
Considering how much of an impact sleep (or lack thereof) has on your health and happiness, it’s worth exploring whether your diet could be interfering with your shut-eye.
Here are the 3 Most foods you need not take before bed:
If you feel physically uncomfortable after eating overly processed junk food, it certainly won’t do your sleep any favours. Pizza packs a double whammy because it is high in saturated fat and sodium.
“Foods that are higher in saturated fat should be avoided at night — for example, butter, ice cream, and fried foods like french fries,” says Gabriel. One small study involving 26 normal-weight adults who usually slept between seven and nine hours a night found that high amounts of saturated fat eaten throughout the day led to lighter and “less restorative” sleep, according to results published in the Journal o the Clinical Sleep Medicine in January 2016. A single slice of cheese pizza from a 14-inch pie has nearly 5 grams of saturated fat, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
We already know excessive consumption of sugar is linked to health issues such as diabetes, weight gain, high blood pressure, and fatty liver disease, to name but a few. It can also make sleep more difficult. You may know to avoid candy, doughnuts, pies, desserts, and soda before bed, but do smoothies seem like a nice healthy snack?
Research published in BMJ Open in March 2016 looked at beverages marketed to children in the UK and found that packaged smoothie products averaged even more sugar per serving (around two and a half teaspoons) than juice. About 40 per cent of the products tested contained close to 4 teaspoons of sugar.
A nip of alcohol, a depressant, before bedtime may help you fall asleep faster, but it interferes with the quality of your slumber by reducing REM sleep and causing disruptions, according to the National Sleep Foundation. Excessive alcohol consumption can also lead to sleep apnea and heavy snoring.
“Alcohol disrupts breathing during sleep by relaxing the throat muscles. Alcohol can also reduce the brain's ability to wake and detect a lack of oxygen in the body, and this can lead to longer and more frequent breathing pauses,” Gabriel says. “According to the findings, alcohol does allow healthy people to fall asleep quicker and sleep more deeply for a while, but it reduces rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. And the more you drink before bed, the more pronounced these effects.”
Pay attention to what you eat before bed, and see if any foods stop you from catching the z's you want.
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