We’ve always heard that you shouldn’t eat after a certain time of the day because it can cause weight gain. Although this was ever proven to be true, the food you eat before you go to bed can have positive or negatives affects on how you sleep that night.
Best Foods before Bed
Cherries – Cherries are one of the few natural foods to contain melatonin, the chemical that helps control our body’s internal clock. One study has found that drinking tart cherry juice resulted in small improvements in sleep duration and quality in adults who suffered from chronic insomnia.
Milk – Dairy foods contain tryptophan, which is a sleep-promoting substance. Other foods that are high in tryptophan include nuts, bananas, honey and eggs.
Jasmine Rice – This rice ranks high on the glycemic index, which means the body digests it slowly, releasing glucose gradually into the bloodstream. A 2007 study showed that eating jasmine rice four hours before bedtime cut the amount of time it took to fall asleep in half.
Sweet Potato – Sweet potatoes are a sleepers dream. Not only do they provide sleep-promoting complex carbohydrates, but they also contain potassium, a muscle-relaxant. Other good sources of potassium include regular potatoes (bake with the skin on), lima beans and papaya.
Worst Foods before Bed
Bacon Cheeseburger – The fat content of this particular fast food is a sleep killer. Fat stimulates the production of acid in the stomach, which can spill up to your esophagus, causing heartburn.
Wine – Alcohol of any kind is bad for sleep. It metabolizes quickly and causes you to wake up multiple times during the night.
Coffee – Coffee contains caffeine which is a stimulant. Drinking coffee too close to bedtime will keep you up at night.
Dark chocolate – Chocolate contains not only calories, but caffeine as well. A Hershey’s special-dark bar has 20 milligrams of caffeine, about the same as half an ounce of espresso. Chocolate also contains theobromine, another stimulant that can increase heart rate and sleeplessness.