Do you eat late at night? Are you the type that raids the fridge at night? If you fall into this category, then this article is a must read for you because I’m going to highlight foods to avoid before bed.
It’s quite tempting late at night to reach for a quick post dinner snack while you’re mid binge on NetFlix. You think destroying some popcorn or a bowl of ice cream is a good idea, but you aren’t aware of the fact that these snacks take several hours to digest and in turn will affect your sleep (as well as set you back from your health and fitness goals if this is a regular occurrence)
The worst result you could get after eating these foods at night is feeling groggy the next day even if you didn’t wake in the middle of the night.
Research and studies have shown that consuming bedtime snacks CAN have positive effects on the body but this is dependent on the snack or food eaten. With that said, let’s get on with it.
Heres a list of foods to avoid before bed;

1. CAKE

Cake is a food with high sugar content, eating this late at night can cause acid reflux, additionally if you’re sensitive to sugar you will be awake for hours till the sugar rush subsides. It’s advisable you replace cake with low fat cheese if you want to avoid the late-night reflux problems, Cottage cheese is also an excellent source of casein protein as well! Find out How much protein you should be eating while we’re on the subject…

Don’t worry about the nightmares that come with eating cheese before bed, it’s a myth! More information about the studies done on eating cheese late at night

2. ICE CREAM

Ice cream contains lots of sugar and fat, much like the cake above, you will be buzzing from a sugar high as well as having the fat sitting in your stomach all night as this takes longer for your body to digest, this is all a recipe for being awake till the early hours. For this reason, ice cream remains one of the foods to avoid before bed.
I’d suggest that you replace ice cream with greek yogurt. Greek yogurts have a low carb content and are lighter compared to ice cream. Eating greek yogurt lessens the risk of having stomach ache at night. If you want an extra hit of protein in your Greek yoghurt then check out this very simple recipe on my YouTube Channel

3. CITRUS FRUIT

Citrus is a natural diuretic and makes you urinate more frequently. Having citrus fruits before means you will be visiting the bathroom several times a night. Remember what you eat or drink before going to sleep plays a significant role in the quality of your nights sleep.
Eat the right food so you won’t stay awake all night or find yourself doing sprints from the bathroom to the bed.

4. PIZZA

Tomato is one of the ingredients used in making pizza and tomato sauce has a high acid content. The acid present in tomatoes can result in an unhappy stomach, especially when spicy red pepper is sprinkled on it. It’s not just acidic foods that can affect your sleep, spicy foods also cause unhappy stomachs and research has shown that these foods commonly cause indigestion.
So if you don’t want your stomach doing backflips opt for protein rich foods like turkey and chicken, they contain tryptophan which is a sleep inducing amino acid found in protein rich foods

5. CHOCOLATE

Chocolate has traces of caffeine which can keep you awake all night, couple that with the fact that chocolate is loaded with sugar you can rest assured (or not!) that chocolate before bed is one of the worst things you can consume before your head hits the pillow. Chocolate is one of the top foods to avoid before going to sleep if you want to have a good nights rest.
A granola bar will be the perfect replacement for chocolate. A granola or trail mix doesn’t contain caffeine and is packed with crunch, sweetness and proteins.

The bottom line; remember what you eat before going to bed can have a significant impact on your sleep, it determines whether you will get a full 8 hours, or spend the night sprinting up and down the hallway to the bathroom between counting the ceiling tiles.
Remember sleep is important for optimal health and having enough rest is dependent on your choice of food before going to bed, so if you want your muscles to repair themselves ready for the next gym session, make sure you’re making smart choices when it comes night time snacks!