Whether you had too much ice cream late at night again or had a banana before laying down to get some shut eye, what you eat before bed can have an effect on your ability to fall and stay asleep! If you are someone who struggles with sleep or you are interested in why you are able to fall asleep faster on some nights, then learning about how food can affect your ability to sleep can be helpful.
Effects of Eating Before Bed on Your Sleep
Food can cause both negative and positive effects that either aid or prevent the sleep you desire!
Magnesium Rich Foods Can Promote Sleep
Magnesium plays an important role in sleep. As a critical mineral that our bodies desire, magnesium helps the body function properly and aids during the process of sleep. Magnesium can be found in foods, such as almonds, cashews, spinach, bananas, broccoli, dark chocolate, and more. It can also be ingested as a supplement. Either way, it can be beneficial to have a magnesium rich snack before bed to help you have a better rest. The mineral will be able to help your body calm down and relax. It also works with melatonin, a hormone known for regulating sleep.
Drinks and Foods with Caffeine Can Keep You Awake
Even though it may be obvious that caffeinated foods and beverages can keep you up, you still may not be aware of hidden amounts of caffeine in foods or realize how close to bedtime it is when you have just introduced caffeine to your body. While coffee, energy drinks, and sodas may be more well-known for containing high traces of caffeine, there are other surprising foods and drinks with it, such as chocolate and ice cream. Even decaffeinated coffee has small amounts of caffeine! Be cautious of the foods and drinks you are consuming before bed because if there’s caffeine involved, you may have a tougher time falling asleep.
Spicy Foods and Citrus Fruit Can Cause Heartburn or Upset Stomach
These are just two types of food categories that can cause heartburn and an upset stomach. Spicy foods have potential to bother the esophagus and citrus fruit is very acidic in the stomach. Considering these types of foods can cause heartburn and an upset stomach, they don’t make the best kinds of food to eat before trying to get to bed!
Nighttime Snacks Can Stabilize Blood Sugars
There’s nothing wrong with a late night snack, especially if your body is hungry! The reality of this is that the body even works while sleeping, so having the right amount of energy is important. Eating the proper amounts of food when your body signals for you to eat can be critical in maintaining healthy blood sugar levels.
Before questioning whether you should eat food before bed or not, the better questions to ask yourself are if the food will keep you up or help you fall asleep and if you are truly even hungry to begin with! It’s important to always listen to your body and its needs. Food can both positively and negatively affect your ability to fall and stay asleep, so be cautious of what you choose to snack on before bed!