We all know that eating right before bedtime isn’t good for us. In fact, it could keep us tossing and turning into the night while our body digests. However, going to bed hungry has its own drawbacks, such as:
- preventing you from falling asleep
- confusing your metabolism and promote weight gain
- losing muscle mass
- binge eating in the morning
- less energy throughout the day
We all need a late-night snack sometimes, but you’ll want to avoid these pre-snooze snacks for their after-effects.
Yogurt, avocados, ice cream, butter, french fries – anything with high amounts of fat take a long time to digest in your system, causing bloating and indigestion. While fatty foods provide sustained slow-burning energy throughout the day, it’s a good idea to stay away from fatty foods before bed since you don’t allow your your body to properly burn off the fat.
Anything containing hot peppers can negatively affect your snooze. Spicy foods elevate your body temperatures during your first sleep cycle, and studies have found that they can cause sleep disruption and nightmares.
With low water and high-fiber contents, many dried fruits can upset your stomach before bed with gas production, and can keep you awake into the late hours of the night from the high sugar levels. This is great news for Keto diets who tend to stray from consuming fruits in the first place!
Your night caps are doing more harm than good. Besides impairing cognition (via memory loss, decreased brain size), alcohol disturbs your sleep rhythms and prevents you from entering REM sleep. Try to stop drinking at least 3 hours before bedtime and drink plenty of water in between.
While green tea is great at providing sustained energy throughout the day, it’s unfortunately not ideal before bed. Besides the caffeine contents of green tea, it also contains theophylline and theobromine. These stimulants increase heart rate and feelings of anxiety – two elements you want to stay away from before bedtime!
Salsa, soup, and any acidic foods should be kept at bay. Tomatoes contain tyramine, which can induce the production of norepinephrine and stimulate brain activity. Keep these foods solely to mid-day snacks.
Vegetables like broccoli and celery are incredibly tough for your stomach to digest, especially in raw form. Your stomach will be at work for hours digesting, and so will you.
Raw chocolate is a natural caffeine source, which gives you a great energy boost during the day. However, even small amounts of caffeine before bedtime can disturb your sleep cycle or stop the sleep-inducing chemical processes in your brain.
Rule of thumb: don’t go to bed hungry, but don’t stuff yourself either. If your body is still digesting long into the night, you’ll be awake too. Limit yourself to a small snack a few hours before bed – just not the foods we listed!