10 things to avoid eating or drinking before going to bed
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Many of us experience trouble falling asleep or some kind of other sleeping problems (waking up in the middle of the night, waking up too early and not being able to fall asleep again, etc). Sometimes this needs medical advice, but very often we can help ourselves thanks to a special “before bed-time” diet.
The food that we eat before going to bed can influence our sleep, and prevent us from having a good night’s rest. Here are 10 elements which you should avoid eating or drinking before going to bed:
1. Hot spices: cumin, ginger, paprika, pepper, curry, hot pepper or chili pepper…. These spices make our dishes delicious, but only at lunch, not at dinner. They are extremely difficult to digest and may cause excessive heat and heartburn during the night.
2. Red meat: its proteins take a lot of time to digest. If you ate a big juicy steak for dinner, you will very likely have trouble falling asleep, or in the worst scenario – a sleepless night.
3. Pulses: lentils and split peas ferment in your stomach and take time to digest, so it’s better to eat them for lunch.
4. Aubergine: this vegetable contains a lot of … nicotine! And as nicotine is a stimulant, it’s better to avoid it before going to bed.
5. Chocolate: especially dark. Four squares of dark chocolate contain 20mg of caffeine. Milk chocolate has a little less caffeine in it, but is still not the best snack to eat at night, unless you want to have a burst of energy.
6. Fats: sour cream, butter, burgers, chips, sausages… Our body will spend a lot of energy and time digesting these foods, and this will result in trouble falling asleep, sweating and restless sleep.
7. Sodium glutamate: this flavour enhancer is often used in Asian cuisine, and we can also find it in industrial foods, concentrates, sauces, chips, pastries, etc. Apart from enhancing the taste of food, it also has an energizing effect.
8. Coffee: a cup of filter coffee contains about 140 mg of caffeine, which is also found in sodas. Too much caffeine can cause trouble falling asleep and make us wake up several times during the night. So if you can’t live without coffee, opt for a decaf.
9. Tea: yes, it also contains caffeine, though its quantity depends on the tea: from 190mg in Matcha to 18mg in Kukicha, with 70mg in Gunpowder (which is used to make mint tea) and 50mg in a black tea teabag. Only red tea, or Rooibos, which is basically not real tea, doesn’t contain caffeine at all.
10. Alcohol: it should be avoided at night, as it may cause inflammation of digestive system and night sweating.
I personally adore drinking tea after dinner, but I guess I will have to review my preferences What about you? Has any of these elements surprise you? Have you got a healthy “before bed-time” diet?
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This is really helpful...Thanks for posting Margarita..
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Anxiety and depression
Can anyone suggest what is good to eat before bed other than a lerruce leaf!! as it seems all the yummy things are a no!! Cheers
Great tips,I have problem to have a good night sleep so I drink Sleepy Time Tea.Which I used to buy From Sainbury but no they don't sell.I wish other Super markets will sell.It helps me a lot.Please if any one knows,let me know.Thanks Julie.
I am 63 this year have osteo arthritis of 2 hips spine now in my 2hands, my right knee has swollen up cant bear to put pressure on it yet xrays say no arthritis. Iam on Tramadol and naproxen the pain doesn't go away. I also have angina and HBP, I went in for a total hysterectomy about 8 years ago was on HRT then took off it when I turned 6o since then my bladder has went haywire my urine comes out the back of me and front off me also have prolapses any tips anyone
Since I can't eat most of those anyway and don't usually drink tea at night can someone tell me why I still don't sleep well .
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This advice is probably well founded, but for some one who as always had their main meal in the evening it's not that helpful, what keeps me awake is the pain from the RA
I know what you mean , we like to eat as a family which means that if our son is working overtime it is often 7 or more before we eat .As regards the pain I have a good physiotherapist ,who is actually a specialist in asthma ,who taught me some breathing exercises to relax and help with the pain It might pay you to ask your doctor if there is anyone like that in your area
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Thanks for the advice JC I will give it a try, as for asking my doctor about it in truth I wouldn't ask him the time of day , I decided to stop taking the drugs due to side effects which as now resulted in me managing my condition on my own.
I would highly recommend Pukkas nighty time tea. It certainly worls for me
I'm sorry you don't have a good doctor , my sister and I had that problem with my mum , she was 91 when she died and for at least 2 years before that there attitude was well she's old what do you expect stop bothering us type of thing . My doctor is very good and actually listens to me .
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