You are not the only one who sometimes right before going to bed stands in front of a fridge feeling guilty. You know from mainstream media that eating before bedtime is bad because it makes your digestive system slow and can cause obesity. You probably have had hard times because you have eaten too much before bedtime what caused difficulties to enjoy peaceful sleep and even brought nightmares. Going to bed feeling starving isn’t good as well. Do you know that there are foods you can eat before bedtime? We should clear it out: it’s a myth that all foods are bad for eating before sleep.
If you choose your food wisely, it won’t disturb your sleep or make you obese. These are the characteristics of foods and drinks that affect your body and mind negatively if you consume them before bedtime: fat, salty, sugary, caffeinated, alcoholic, energy boosting, diuretic, heavy and difficult to process by stomach. It means that you should fully exclude from your before-bedtime menu fried foods, meat, chocolate and coffee, spicy foods, onions and garlic, citrus fruits, beans, barley, ice-cream, all fast foods, potatoes and potato chips. When you go to sleep the main goal is quality resting time, so you don’t want to keep your stomach busy.
These are characteristics of foods and drinks that affect your sleep positively: natural, easy to digest, sedative. On the top of the list stand berries and fruits if they are not diuretic and not citrus fruits.
Cherries have been used for centuries as folk remedy for many different health conditions, for example, arthritis pain and stress. If they help to relieve stress, they must have positive effect on sleep as well, right? International group of researchers from several institutes and universities in UK, US and South Africa studied together the way cherries affect human sleep, and they confidentially are giving the green light to consuming cherries and cherry juice before bedtime. Cherries and grapes contain melatonin – a hormone that is naturally produced in the human body before sleep. Melatonin already is inside of your body and it helps to regulate your sleep cycles and internal clock of your body. You might also lack melatonin due to eating wrong foods and doing wrong activities before bedtime, so eating cherries or grapes will actually increase the levels of melatonin in your body improving your sleep quality. This makes cherries and grapes perfect before-bedtime snacks!
There aren’t many foods that contain melatonin, but there is also another substance to look for into sleep supporting foods – tryptophan. Tryptophan is essential amino acid that helps your body to produce and balance levels of hormones and neurotransmitters, and it is related to serotonin and melatonin which both regulate your sleep. Tryptophan containing foods that don’t do any harm to your body even if you eat them before bedtime are milk, dairy products and walnuts. There is also a warning about dairy products before bedtime: fat, salty cheeses and sugary dairy desserts won’t be the right choice.
Almonds and bananas are rich of magnesium that helps to relax muscles when you are going to sleep. Wild lettuce is a sedative food that reduces your stress levels affecting sleeping time positively, but kale and milk are rich of calcium that plays a big role into melatonin production into human body. These foods won’t do any harm to your sleep, but improve it.
The popular supposition that food before bedtime turns into fat stored in human body is truthful if you snack on junk foods that have low nutritional value and are hard to digest. Natural fruits and vegetables are full of vitamins and minerals that help to keep healthy weight. Food doesn’t make you overweight and it doesn’t disturb sleep if you make the right choices. Just remember that even good foods can become bad if you are overeating, so know the limit! Whatever you are eating before going to bed, keep it light. Don’t starve your body, but do not eat big portions before sleep as well. Nature and human body loves balance into everything including your relationship with food.
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