Eating has long been associated with many positive and negative implications on our health. Some food are considered “good” others are considered “bad”.
It’s of course much more complex than that…
As there are so many of us in this forum suffering from sleep issues, I wonder:
. have you had personal experiences that certain foods are helping you to get better rest at night? We have covered various teas in other parts of the Treehouse, so I would be curious to hear about food items.
. and what about the opposite? Are there foods that give you even worse nights than usual?
Thank you for sharing your personal experiences which might help to uncover some commonalities amongst the members.
Cheers @laurent.rossier - great topic! Whenever I can’t sleep (I’m actually working now, had meetings all day), I tend to snack around midnight. I don’t eat things with excessive sugar or caffeine in them, but my go-tos are stuff l can snack on so I don’t eat too much (which may also keep me awake). Crisps, Peperamis, blocks of cheese or a Pot Noodle. I don’t have any negative associations with cheese either, so I’m sure that’s a myth.
A very warm welcome to the treehouse @dcm.leeds, but sorry to hear that about your night’s sleep! I completely find the same to be true and have realised I sleep better skipping the late(ish) evening meals in favour of a early dinner around 6 or 7. Plus that way I wake up hungry and as someone whose favourite meal is breakfast, it feels like a win-win, haha
I love that you asked this question @laurent.rossier! I’m a huge believer that food plays a major role in everything we feel and do - after all it is a “medicine” we take three time per day, EVERY day!
I dug into this a little bit on the sofi blog with an article on the 5 foods (really, types of foods) that can prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep.
Aside from the more obvious disruptors such as alcohol of caffeine, what I found the most interesting was that aged or cured foods (think fermented products, molded cheeses and processed meats) can stimulate our brain and nervous system to keep us awake and “switched on.” I tend to cook a lot of asian dishes and foods like miso, fish sauce, soy and teriyaki are all fermented foods!
Since switching up my dinner options and having them for lunch instead, I do think I’ve noticed a small difference in how long it takes for me to fall asleep!
For those interested: The judges are still out there if breakfast is truly the most important meal of the day. Whatever though your personal preference may be, there is increasing evidence that intermittent fasting has at least some benefits.
Intermittent fasting is exactly that - INTERMITTENT fasting. Many choose to limit their food intake to an 8hour-window per day (which for obvious reasons can be easier achieved when skipping breakfast or dinner); others opt to go without food for 1-2 days per week.
One of the benefits of IF is to regulate blood sugar levels and to “teach” the body to get energy from fat (as opposed to glucose) - something that our bodies do not need to regularly do these days, because many of us are constantly eating and snacking.
Why mention this here in the Treehouse?
Intermittent fasting could well be a way to improve sleep!
With reduced digestive activities (implying that your eating window stops well before sleeping time), there are studies showing that sleep can improve; that bodies can be more aligned to our circadian clocks. Does it always work? No.
But for those out there suffering from sleepless nights, it might be worth a try.
As a word of caution: If you are having serious health issues, it is best to consult your doctor on the best way to get started with Intermittent Fasting.
Here a few articles for your reading pleasure. Whilst not scientific the articles have been written on the basis of research papers.
I must be really odd as food and drink doesn’t seem to affect my sleep. I gave up tea and coffee for 3 months that didn’t make any difference. As a coeliac sufferer I thought msybe dairy might be an issue ss well, so gave that up for 3 months no difference. What I have tried is vit b6, zinc and selenium, and I have been having a few more hours of sleep, just taken them for a couple of weeks so whether it’s going to carry on who knows.