What we eat and when we eat it affects our sleep

Tip written by AdSalutem, BBHI collaborating entity in the field of sleep.

Good sleep is necessary for our physical and mental well-being and it provides us with better rest, which benefits our cognitive ability.

From our food we get the essential nutrients for the development of all the functions of our organism, among them sleeping.

What we eat and drink affects our sleep. The time we eat and how often we eat is key to maintaining healthy sleep.

For this reason, it is interesting to know what foods make it easier or more difficult for us to sleep, as well as the ideal moment of the day to ingest them.

Foods we need to avoid

Stimulating beverages such as coffee, tea, cocoa and many soft drinks are substances that you should avoid consuming in the hours close to bedtime since their stimulating effect can persist for several hours.

Foods that cause acidity (hot spices), reflux (fatty foods) or are more diuretic (endive, celery, aubergine or onion) can interrupt and disturb sleep.

Alcoholic beverages ingested in moderation can induce sleep, although most of the time they alter it, causing early awakening, apnea and insomnia.

In the last hours of the day, you should avoid eating fruits rich in vitamin C (orange or kiwi), red meats and sausages, since they are rich in tyrosine, an amino acid that can keep you awake.

In genetically predisposed people, allergies or intolerances to certain foods or additives can alter sleep by causing itching, rashes or migraines, for example.

Good foods

On the other hand, bananas, pineapple, milk, blue fish, chicken, soybeans, cheese (uncured) and nuts are all foods rich in tryptophan, which is an essential amino acid for the hormones that regulate sleep. It is advisable to take them in the evening because they can help you to sleep.

In order for our food to help us achieve healthy sleep, it is very important to establish a routine of healthy dietary habits and meal times and go to sleep about two hours after dinner.


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