Here are a few of the best and worst foods for quality sleep
Eating yourself to better quality sleep sounds like a dream, but it’s entirely possible. Plenty of foods contain chemicals conducive to stimulating the hormones and mental states vital to falling asleep at the right time.Conversely, other foods stimulate other hormones and moods that make you toss and turn rather than drifting off. Most of them are delicious, so don’t cut them out of your diet altogether -- just don’t have them within a few hours of your bedtime. Here’s a few foods you should probably avoid before bedtime:
1. Anything really, really spicy.
Don’t take that chicken vindaloo out for a few bites right before bed! Anything that lights your mouth on fire is also going to raise your body temperature and make your body work harder to digest it. That means your body could be keeping you awake while it fights to move the spices along. If you’re used to the heat, you’re probably fine, but if Taco Bell makes you uncomfortable, then mind the timing of your spicy meals. If you’ve got acid reflux, some spices can trigger that.
2. Ice cream and donuts.
That heavenly bowl of fudge-laced chocolate chip cookie dough with raspberry bits sounds like a treat after dinner...but don’t wait too long after dinner! Ice cream has loads of sugar that spike your insulin levels, which can make it harder to sleep. Some people can get digestive discomfort and sugar rushes, which can make you too uncomfortable to sleep.
Sadly, here’s another decadent option to avoid before bedtime. While chocolate can help you destress, it does contain hints of caffeine. It’s miniscule compared to a cup of coffee, but those of us who are more caffeine sensitive shouldn’t take the risk especially the night before a big day.
4. Anything that’ll get you drunk.
The right amount of alcohol is conducive to passing out, but also to waking up in the middle of the night. Alcohol may make your lids heavy faster, but disrupt your sleep patterns.
5. Cheeseburgers, steaks, and high-fat foods in general.
While these can be pretty filling to the point of sinking into a food coma, the fat can activate digestion which means bathroom urges that interfere with falling asleep. If you haven’t noticed a common pattern between the above foods yet, we’ll point it out: they’re generally not so healthy for you anyway for a load of other purposes. This isn’t a call to completely cut them out of your life like a toxic friend, but rather relegate them to fun times several hours before bed or nights where you know you’ll be worn out enough to sleep well.On a brighter note, here are some delicious foods to eat throughout the day to make sure you can get to bed on time:
We’re talking about fresh cherries, not the ones baked into a sumptuous, gooey cherry pie! Cherries contain melatonin and taste sweet and tangy.
Milk isn’t just a popular cooking ingredient, but it’s a significant chunk of the various concoctions. It contains tryptophans, which is said to be a chemical to compel you to be attracted to them.
Maybe you should’ve grabbed those chocolate-covered almonds by the department store cash register then! These crunchy nuts are high in calcium and magnesium to help you relax your brain and muscles. But as said before, chocolate and sugar aren’t great for sleep, so make sure any chocolate coatings aren’t too thick.
4. Warm milk.
Warm milk just has a soothing vibe to it and takes some of us back to childhood evenings of being given warm milk (and maybe a few cookies) before bed. Milk is chock full of compounds that help you sleep, such as tryptophan, calcium, vitamin D, and melatonin. If you haven’t heard of that last one, it’s so powerful in helping you sleep that it’s sold in pills or gummies you can buy in any drugstore. And if you need a lower-calorie option, try low-fat milk.
Like milk, kiwis are also loaded with chemicals that help you sleep such as melatonin, magnesium, and folate. So instead of sugary ice cream, opt for kiwis as a juicy dessert instead.
There’s a reason why chamomile is a popular ingredient in skincare products that promote calming properties. It can activate GABA A receptors, a process that can help calm you down. Chamomile tea can be found at most grocery stores and serves as a fantastic calorie-free pre-bedtime drink. Now that you’ve got a few pointers of how to adapt your diet, now’s a good time to explore other non-culinary options that’ll help you sleep better. We strongly suggest checking out Lull’s premium memory foam mattresses, sheets, and pillows that’ll have you sleeping soundly even if you’ve had a few chunky hamburgers. All our durable, hypoallergenic products will help you align your spine to complement your new diet of cherries and almonds. And if you’re reading this in July 2021, hop on over and check out our $250 off any mattress for our Summer Savings sale!