While it’s a well known fact that you shouldn’t be slamming coffee and sweets right before hitting the hay, it turns out a lot of healthy foods may also be preventing you from getting those ZZZs.
1. Orange Juice
Orange juice is not a good pre-bedtime drink for all the reasons you’d think—it’s extremely acidic, which is never a good idea before bed, regardless of if you suffer from reflux or not. It’s also very sugary, which, as you know, isn’t helpful for those trying to fall asleep more easily.
We’ve all heard it before: soda is really just not good for you. Despite it’s scary side effects, it’s also awful for falling asleep. It’s full on sugar, which leaves you wide awake, and has even been connected to restless sleep.
3. Dark Chocolate
The sneaky devil—which can carry up to a quarter of the caffeine you’d find in an average cup of joe—also contains amino acid that makes you alert, similar to the one found in cured meats and cheeses. Basically, dark chocolate is double the energy, making it a much better snack for the afternoon than the middle of the night.
4. Cured Meats And Cheeses
Cured meats and cheeses are great for a daytime picnic, but not for dinner. If you planned on ending your day with a fabulous charcuterie platter, reconsider moving it to brunch: Cured meats and cheeses contains tyramine, an amino acid that makes you more alert.
5. Red Meat
Red meat, like steak or ground beef, is high in protein and has a similar effect on the body as the cruciferous vegetables mentioned above.
6. Tomato Sauce
Tomato sauce is another veggie-based favorite to avoid. Because of its high acidity, it’s often the cause of morning-after heartburn and indigestion. You can still eat a bowl of spaghetti for dinner, but dietitian Alissa Rumsey says it’s best to eat it at least 3 hours before going to bed. Spicy foods, which are also notorious for causing heartburn, make for an extra restless night of sleep because they raise your core body temperature. So if you’re wondering why you had a nightmare after munching on some spicy penne arrabiata, now you have an answer.
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