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What NOT To Eat Before Bed

Getting a good night’s sleep is important. Aside from giving your body time to relax and repair itself, it can help to improve your mood and alertness throughout the day. When we don’t sleep as much, or have poor quality sleep, we may spend the day feeling sluggish, unhappy and unproductive. When we think of the things that may keep us up at night, have you ever considered your diet? What we eat can play a significant role on our sleep patterns and the quality of our sleep. As the day is ending, you may want to pay closer attention to what you’re eating for dinner or a late night snack.

Spicy Foods
Spicy foods can keep us up at night because they create an acidic, heated environment in our bodies. Furthermore, digesting these foods may cause your body discomfort. Try avoiding or limiting your intake of spicy foods before bedtime to help your body ease into sleep.

Fried Foods
As delicious as fried foods are, they can cause digestion problems which are not too helpful when it comes to relaxing in bed. Opt for roasted, grilled, steamed, baked, or sautéed foods in lieu of fried foods and you could also cut down on your added fats, sugars, sodium, and calories.

Of course, drinking coffee near bedtime is not the best idea, but there are other foods that contain caffeine that could be disrupting your sleep. Avoid coffee, dark chocolate, teas and sodas. Instead, stay hydrated by drinking water. If you’ve got a sweet tooth after dinner, try eating fruit as a caffeine-free dessert.

Heavy Meals
Heavy meals that are high in fiber, fats and protein, may leave you feeling lethargic. And while you may think this will help you sleep, your body ends up working harder to digest the foods, and can sometimes lead to pain or uncomfortable feelings which can interrupt your sleep. Be mindful when you eat and remember to stop when you are almost full.

Despite the relaxing effect alcohol may have, studies show that it causes you to wake in the night and reduces REM sleep. Cut back on the nightcaps to slowly but surely improve your sleep.

Tyramine is an amino acid known to stimulate brain activity, which can obviously keep you up at night. It’s found in fermented foods such as sour cream, aged cheeses, and yogurt. If you must have cheese, try mozzarella or another non-aged variety.

Skip the sugar high by avoiding processed sweet foods (ex. cupcake) or using generous amounts of condiments and sauces (ex. marinara, ketchup, mayonnaise – all high in sugar and additives) near bedtime. Try choosing more vegetables and lean protein to fill you up.

Lacks Nutritional Value
Eating empty calories at night does nothing for your health and fares worse for your sleep. Your body needs nutrients to fuel and repair itself, and there is a strong link between healthy digestion and sleep. Seek out meals and snacks that include leafy greens, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and seeds.

Acid Reflux
Foods such as tomatoes, caffeine, and alcohol tend to cause indigestion and discomfort (heartburn, acid reflux), which can disrupt your sleep quality. If you are prone to acid reflux or indigestion, you might want to try chewing gum to encourage saliva production and help the digestion process overall.

“Happy” Foods
Foods high in serotonin and dopamine can help us feel happier, which can better prepare us for a good night’s rest. These foods include complex carbohydrates (ex. quinoa, brown rice) and healthy fats (ex. oily fish, avocados, nuts, olive oils, chia seeds, hemp seeds). Try incorporating these foods into your dinner or late night snack to better prepare you for a good night’s rest.

Herbs & Spices
Different herbs and spices have different affects on our body. Choose sage and basil to help with sleep, and avoid black and red peppers, which can stimulate us.

What foods or drinks help you get a good night’s sleep? Share your tips with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Find and follow us on Instagram, Vine, and Pinterest, too!

Get a good night’s rest then celebrate with a delicious meal at the Brick Your Neighborhood Deli in Pomona! We are open weekdays from 10:30am-7:30pm and Saturdays 10:30am-4:30pm. To check out our menu or learn more about our catering services, visit or call 909-596-5225 today!