Top 6 foods to avoid before bedtime

A restful sleep is essential to help the body repair and rejuvenate. Further, frequent disruptions in the sleep cycle can invariably damage overall health. Sleep problems can develop due to factors like stress, chronic pain, or something as simple as what one chooses to eat right before bed. Eating habits can play a role in determining sleep quality. So, here are some of the foods to avoid before bedtime to get complete rest at night.

1. Tomatoes
Tomatoes are one of the richest sources of a carotenoid called lycopene. So, they exhibit anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that help in strengthening the immune system. Moreover, tomatoes are so versatile that they can be easily added to any recipe for flavor or texture. However, excessive intake of tomatoes can have an impact on sleep. The amino acids in tomatoes may keep the brain active and cause acid reflux, disrupting sleep.

2. Oranges
As vitamin C-rich fruits, oranges can add nutrients and flavor to dinnertime salads. But, the high level of acids in this citrus fruit may do more bad than good when it comes to sleep. The fruit can cause acid reflux and trigger the bladder, making one wake up often at night.

3. Chocolate
A little chocolate treat right before bed may seem comforting. However, the high caffeine content in chocolates may prevent one from falling asleep. Caffeine stimulates the brain and prevents the organ from sustaining prolonged REM sleep. Dark chocolate with 70% or more cocoa should especially be avoided right before bedtime if one wants to have a restful sleep.

4. Cheese
Dairy-based products such as cheese can cause bloating, gas, and inflammation in the stomach. Additionally, for those with dairy intolerance or allergies, eating cheese could definitely cause pain and discomfort, which can make it difficult to fall asleep. Even if one is not sensitive to dairy products, the tyramine content in certain types of cheese can increase brain activity. So, cheese and cheese-based recipes are key foods to avoid before bedtime.

5. Hot peppers
All types of hot peppers contain a compound called capsaicin, which can help fight infections and boost the immune system. However, if one opts for foods containing peppers right before bedtime, they may experience sleep disruptions. This is because capsaicin can cause heartburn and acidity. In addition, it can raise the overall body temperature, causing a lot of discomfort as one tries to fall asleep.

6. Potato chips
Fried snacks like potato chips contain high levels of sodium and unhealthy fats, which can cause indigestion and increase blood sugar and blood pressure. These issues can negatively impact the sleep quality. So, if one likes to have potato chips as midnight snacks, it is time to break this habit for better sleep.

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