The type of bed you sleep in affects the way you sleep.
Sleep is very important. We need to have at least 6-8 hours of sleep in a day so that our body can recuperate and gain back that energy that had been used up throughout the day. We want to avoid sleepless hours, that’s why we make it a point to buy the most comfortable bed that allows us to sleep well. Read review of adjustable beds by bedroom solutions for you to have more reasons to get a comfortable bed for better sleep.
But beds are not just the factors that disrupts sleep. Do you know that what you eat or drink has an impact on your sleeping habits too? In this post, let’s investigate the impact of eating and drinking before going to bed.
Influence of eating and drinking before going to sleep
It is well known that you should not drink caffeine right before going to bed. But there are even more nutrients that affect sleep patterns. Some disrupt sleep, while others promote sleep. The time of eating and drinking also influences sleep.
Time of day
Your body digests fastest in the morning and later in the day, the slower the digestion. This is one of the reasons why a late or too heavy evening meal can disrupt sleep. At night, the meal remains half-digested in the stomach.
A good breakfast, a moderate lunch and a lighter evening meal are recommended. Sleep specialists and dietitians recommend that you do not eat after 7 p.m. or at least allow at least 3 hours between your last meal and bedtime. Spicy foods are also not recommended, as they cause bloating and belching. Sleeping on an empty stomach, on the other hand, is also not conducive to a good night’s sleep and keeps you awake because the stomach contracts.
Which nutrients stimulate sleep?
Tryptophan, a natural amino acid, promotes sleep. We find this substance in the most protein-rich food. Some common dietary sources of tryptophan include yogurt, milk, dates, bananas, nuts, tuna, poultry, and chocolate. A small portion half an hour before going to sleep can already provide a relaxing body feeling and thus induces sleep.
Also, serotonin promotes sleep. Serotonin is a happiness hormone that can also be found in many antidepressants. This hormone is made up of carbohydrates and the amino acid tryptophan. Foods that increase serotonin production in the brain also improve mood. Melatonin is made from serotonin. Melatonin is responsible for falling asleep. People with a melatonin deficiency have restless sleep and have difficulty falling asleep. The sleep phase is also shorter than normal.
Which foods stimulate the production of serotonin ? Because serotonin is made up of carbohydrates, carbohydrate-rich foods play a role. Whole wheat bread, brown rice and whole wheat pasta are a good choice, as they contain carbohydrates that are slowly absorbed into the body. Also, tryptophan plays a role here. As mentioned earlier, this is reflected in dairy products and bananas, among other things.
Which nutrients disrupt sleep?
Many people drink a nightcap before going to bed. It is a fallacy because alcohol is anything but sleep-promoting. On the contrary. Alcohol makes you fall asleep faster, but the depth and therefore the quality of sleep decreases enormously. Alcohol also dehydrates the body and makes you have to get up more often at night to urinate. Alcohol – even to a limited extent – makes you sleep unsteadily, sweat more and dream more turbulently.
The same effect is also obtained by sleeping medication : you fall asleep faster, but the quality of sleep decreases seriously and habituation occurs.
Caffeine can be found in coffee and cola, but sometimes also in tea (theine). Caffeine keeps you alert and awake. If you drink too much coffee during the day or have another cup after 5 pm, you tend to stay awake longer, fall asleep less quickly and sleep less soundly. Caffeine not only keeps our brains awake, but also stimulates the kidneys, stomach and intestines.
Fast-acting sugars, such as in white bread, cookies, candy, spaghetti and rice, give us a short energy boost. They stimulate the brain and have a negative influence on falling asleep. Meals with a lot of sugars or sweets are therefore not recommended in the evening.
Finally, smoking also has a negative influence on sleep. The substance nicotine is stimulating and addictive. That is why smokers often have severe sleep deprivation. It takes them longer to fall asleep, and they also wake up more during the night. Their sleep is also less deep.
For a good night’s sleep, it is therefore best not to eat too late and prefer a light meal with whole grains and dairy products. If you take the above tips into account, you will not only fall asleep faster, but also the depth and quality of your sleep will increase. So bottom line – it’s not just on the type of bed you sleep in, it also boils down to the right intake of food and drinks.