Nutritions Influence on Sleep29 Aug 2019
We know that food affects the amount of energy we have to spend on a day-to-day basis, but did you know that it also affects the way that you sleep? Keeping good food habits can help you to be a happier, healthier you in no time by helping you to get a good night’s sleep. Here are a few ways that your diet affects your sleep.
Time You Eat
If you think when you eat doesn’t matter, you would be wrong. If you eat right before bed, you will struggle to stay asleep for as long as you need to because you will need to wake up and use the bathroom throughout the night. Disrupted sleep is almost worse than getting no sleep at all if it happens on a regular basis. Try to keep your meals to three or four hours before you plan to go to bed to avoid this.
Foods You Eat
If there are foods that upset your stomach or give you gas, you’ll want to avoid them in the evenings. Eating these foods late at night can lead to indigestion and heartburn that will keep you up later in the night or wake you up to use the bathroom. This makes it a lot harder for you to get enough REM sleep, which is when your body does the bulk of its healing.
Amount You Eat
If you overeat, you might find yourself falling into a “food coma” after your meal. This is not a good thing. You’ll fall asleep easier but you won’t get high-quality sleep. Instead, your body will be expending tons of energy to digest the food that you ate and less on actually keeping you asleep and healthy. This means that you will wake up feeling just as tired and groggy as you did when you went to sleep.
How You Can Improve Your Sleep
In addition to the options mentioned above, there are a lot of simple ways that you can work on improving your sleep without changing your entire life around.
A simple, but expensive, change that you should make is to ensure that your mattress is as supportive as it needs to be. If you are waking up in aches and pains that are unrelated to an injury on a regular basis, chances are that your mattress and pillows are not supporting your body the way you need them to. Think back to when the last time you replaced it was. If it was more than 6 to 10 years ago, it’s time for a new mattress. If you can’t remember when you last bought pillows, think about replacing those too.
Caffeine and alcohol may seem like good ideas at the time, but avoiding them can do wonders for your sleep. Caffeine stays in your system for up to 8 hours after you ingest it, making it difficult for you to fall asleep. On the other hand, alcohol can make it easier for you to fall asleep at first but make it harder for you to actually stay asleep. Give yourself a four-hour buffer at minimum between your alcohol intake and bedtime.
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