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Ditch These Dishes: 8 Foods To Avoid Before Sleep

Aug 7 Food not to eat Before Bed

You’ve just finished watching the latest episode of your favorite late-night show, and your stomach is growling like crazy.

But, before you raid your fridge for a midnight snack, pause for a moment.

You’ve been tricked by those yummy snacks you eat at night. Your pantry is hiding a dangerous secret. It whispers in your ear late at night, luring you in with promises of chocolate-covered delights and spicy snacks.

But watch out…the ice cream you’re craving might just be the villain behind your sleepless nights.

Your midnight munchies may be the very monsters under your bed – disguised as your favorite treats.

The food you binge on just before bedtime doesn’t just satiate your hunger, it directly sabotages your sleep quality and health.

So, are you ready to discover which midnight treats foods to avoid before sleep for a good night’s rest? Let’s dive right into it.

What Foods To Avoid Before Sleep?

Here are 8 foods, (and a drink) to avoid before bed:

1. Coffee or Caffeinated Beverages: What’s the first thing which comes to your mind when you think about coffee? Instantaneous energy.
A cup of coffee or tea might be a real comfort for many of you before bed, but it can actually sabotage your sleep quality. Caffeine is a known sleep disruptor, but tolerance varies widely.

It is a stimulant which stimulates your nervous system and can prevent your body from naturally relaxing during night.

Regular caffeine intake has been found to decrease sleep quality (specifically, a delay in getting into the REM stage because it induces Slow Wave Sleep)1

Caffeine reduces the “depth” of sleep, called NREM3 or Slow Wave Sleep and dulls your body’s sleep cues. It’s actually better used for quick power naps when you’re feeling tired during the day so you wake-up refreshed.

Bad carbs for bed

2. Processed carbs: Foods like white bread, pasta, and pastries are high in refinedcarbohydrates which can disrupt your sleep. They cause a spike in blood sugar which can lead to restless sleep as your body tries to balance your blood sugar levels.

Carbs cause your insulin to spike, which disrupts the hormones that affect the quality of your sleep. Studies show that disrupted sleep leads to weight gain over time.

Think about it like this, Carbs are the primary fuel our body uses for exertion. Eating right before bed increases the amount of carbs that are converted to body fat because of the lack of physical activity.

Most people aren’t eating rice or berries after dinner. They’re eating junk, processed food because it’s mentally easier to overeat foods which stimulate your taste buds when you’re tired and about to hit the hay.

Some say eating carbs at night affects insulin differently than in the morning. Insulin sensitivity appears to decrease throughout the day. A sudden increase in blood sugar is more harmful to blood vessel tissues than a constantly high blood sugar level. Night shift workers typically put on more pounds than those who work during the day. You can see it.

3. Sugary snacks: Candies, cookies, and other sweets may satisfy your late-night sugar cravings but can lead to a sugar crash that can disrupt and delay your sleep. Not to mention, they can cause weight gain because of excessive calorie consumption and the blood sugar spike can take a while to come down, delaying your sleep.

If you have a soft spot for sweets, dessert might be something you look forward to everyday, it is best used in moderation, especially if you’re experiencing sleep deprivation.

4. Cheese: You might have heard that certain types of cheese, especially aged cheese can lead to vivid dreams and poor sleep. The high fat content in cheese also makes it very difficult to digest, which can leave you feeling bloated and hinder your sleep.

Aged cheese contains Tryptophan, which is a precursor to serotonin. When Tryptophan converts to serotonin it makes you sleepy. Cheese is a good source of Tryptophan, as is turkey, which is why you feel super sleepy after Thanksgiving dinner.

5. Pizza: High in fat and contains highly acidic tomatoes, pizza can lead to bloating and heartburn, neither of which are conducive to a good night’s sleep.

6. Ice Cream: Having this sleep-snatcher before bed can cause havoc with your sleep cycle. The high sugar content leads to a spike in your energy levels and can delay the process of falling asleep.

Dark Chocolate

7. Dark Chocolate: Surprisingly, dark chocolate, often hailed as the healthiest choice of chocolates can hinder your sleep. This is because it has a high cocoa amount, which means higher caffeine content and theobromine which are known to increase heart rate and cause sleeplessness. Dark chocolate can have amazing health benefits, but eating it close to bedtime might keep you tossing and turning at night.

8. Spicy Foods: These foods can cause heartburn or indigestion, which is sure to keep you up. Another reason why you should avoid spicy foods is because it can increase your body’s temperature, and your body needs to cool down and normalize before you can drift off to sleep.

So, if you’re aiming for a peaceful night’s sleep, it’s best to avoid these foods before bed.

9. Alcohol: Many people believe that alcohol can help them fall asleep, but it actually disrupts the REM cycle, leading to poor quality of sleep and it also has a tendency to induce acid reflux.

Some other sleep tips for you:

  • Have dinner at least 2-3 hours before going to bed. When you eat too close to bedtime, your mind falls asleep, but your body doesn’t. Your digestive system keeps working for 2-3 hours and that’s why you wake up feeling fatigued and/or groggy.
  • Make sure you’re hydrated, but not overhydrated. Drinking too much water can lead to frequent trips to the bathroom, while drinking too little can wake you up in the middle of the night just to drink some water.
  • Try a natural, plant-based sleep supplement like CBD + CBN Oil for sleep. Cannovia offers a 30 day money-back guarantee with FREE SHIPPING!

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Sources

  1. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/07487304211013995
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