Healthier Eating Could Lead to Healthier Sleep – Guest Post

Could the quality of your sleep really be influenced by the quality of what you eat? It sure can be. The next time you’re having trouble sleeping evaluate your diet and determine if you’re setting yourself up for a terrible night’s sleep.

Indigestion Can Reduce Sleep Quality  - For many people spicy foods, overeating or consuming foods that don’t provide a solid nutritional value leads to indigestion at night. This middle of the night heartburn can deprive you and your child of much needed rest. Depending on the severity of problem, this could lead to a great deal of physical pain as well. To increase sleep quality, avoid foods that trigger indigestion.

Food Inspired Dreams Can Reduce Sleep Quality - Many people are effected by what they eat in the form of dreams. This is also true for children. Eating certain foods just before bedtime can allow your mind to produce vivid imagery than can cause you to awake in the middle of the night. For some, these dreams come in the form of unexplainable nightmares. Others will experience intense emotions or stress in a dream causing the body to awaken. It doesn’t always take a bad dream to wake someone up in the middle of the night. An exciting dream can rouse you from your nightly sleep too. To increase sleep quality, avoid foods that tend to cause you to have vivid dreams.

Frequent Bathroom Trips Reduce Sleep Quality - Drinking more water throughout the day can help the body maintain hydration and proper fitness. However, it can also be cause for frequent trips to the bathroom in the middle of the night. Try to reduce your liquid intake as the night winds down in order to stave off these visits. To increase sleep quality, avoid drinking liquids a few hours before you hit the hay.

 

Rapid Eye Movement is the state of sleep attributed to dreaming. For most people, achieving REM will denote a good night’s rest. REM sleep isn’t achieved for several hours into the sleep cycle in most cases. If you’re awakened throughout the night due to various food-related complications it could take you that much longer to reach REM sleep.

Fortunately, there are foods you can eat that should help ensure you get a good night’s sleep – or at least help prevent you from having a bad one. Instead of reaching for a midnight snack of various sugary goods, why not eat light and healthy by finding:

  • Foods heavy in tryptophan such as milk, bananas, eggs or turkey. These foods may naturally make you feel drowsy.
  • Non-caffeinated products – which means no chocolate, pop, some teas and other goods. These foods will ensure you aren’t ramped up with caffeine right before bed.
  • Non-alcoholic drinks. Avoiding these can help to ensure you don’t experience alcohol related restlessness throughout the night.

Being mindful that what you put into your body can help you maintain proper sleeping cycles. Providing a healthier sleep for yourself and your child can impact the next day as you both could feel more energized as well as mentally alert.

With over 20 years of experience in the nanny world as an award-winning nanny, agency director, and parenting author, Michelle LaRowe is considered a leading industry expert. A mom herself, she loves to educate parents and nannies on the importance of quality in-home childcare. Find out more by visiting @eNannySource on Twitter. 

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