Is It Bad to Eat Before Going to Sleep?
Updated: May 27
Guilty of sneaking snacks at bedtime? Who isn’t!? Tasty late-night treats can really hit the spot... but have you considered the effects of snacking on your quality of sleep? It may come as a surprise that the foods you eat right before bed could be a contributing factor to the amount of sleep (or lack thereof) that you’re getting. Keep reading for a few dos and don’ts of nocturnal nibbling.
Just Say ‘No’ to Junk Food
Cookies calling your name from the cupboard at bedtime? Think twice before you give in! Not only does junk food do obvious damage to the waistline, but it also harms you in less obvious ways. Foods high in simple sugars can wreak havoc on your blood sugar regulation throughout the night. The result? A mid-slumber sugar crash leading to disrupted sleep. Yikes.
Keep in mind that a little bit of sugar before bed isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The key is to balance it out with lean proteins and healthy fats. How? By ditching the cake for a handful of nuts and cheese, or substituting salty chips with whole grain crackers and lean turkey deli meat. Yum.
A Little Bit of Spice Isn’t Always Nice
Isn’t dealing with heartburn and acid reflux already hard enough during the day? Don’t put yourself in a position to suffer through it at night by eating acidic and spicy foods before bed.
Remember that gravity no longer works in your favor when you lie down. This means gravity won't be pushing those acidic and spicy foods south of your stomach. Avoid adverse reflux reactions by consuming the foods several hours before bedtime.
Adjustable beds can be a huge benefit to those who suffer from acid reflux at night. By recreating the effects of gravity with a little head tilt, you can aid your digestive system. Explore our various adjustable bed base options to find one that fits your needs and preferences. The Essential Head Up is great for immediate budget-friendly relief. Alternatively, the Maximize 604 incorporates features like foot up motion and massage.
Put the Starbucks Down
Did you know... caffeine can disrupt your sleep for more than 6 hours after consumption?
If you’d rather give up your left hand than give up coffee—don’t worry. We’re not asking you to give up coffee, but rather to drink it responsibly. Having a cup of joe in the morning is the preferred way to start the day for many and perfectly fine to do. However, drinking coffee 6 to 8 hours before bed is a surefire way to ensure you’re going to need that double shot espresso to get going the next day.
Quick tip: view alcohol before bedtime the same as coffee. The initial feeling of drowsiness you get from a drink is short-lived. Ultimately, you will be tossing and turning not long after falling asleep.
There’s a lot of research out there regarding what to eat and what not to eat before bedtime. It is difficult to say what the best practice should be with so many variables to account for. If you feel like you need a snack before bed, by all means have the snack—just be thoughtful about the type of food you are putting into your body. Everyone's experience is different, so experiment and do what you feel is best for you.