the foods you can indulge in and what to avoid

Sometimes a midnight snack can be more than you bargained for when it comes to your health.

Luckily, a certified sleep coach revealed the food items that are safe to eat right before you hit the hay and others to completely avoid.

First of all, sleep science coach Sanchita Sen wants people to know that snacking before bed isn’t entirely bad.

In fact, if you deprive yourself of food when you’re hungry before bedtime, your body won’t have the necessary energy to rest and repair and will consequently retain fat cells.

Sen told Amerisleep that eating before you fall asleep can promote weight loss, maintain satisfactory blood sugar levels, and help you get a more restful night of sleep.

So, rather than avoiding food altogether, she wants people to simply pay attention to what they’re consuming before they slumber. 

To promote weight loss, Sen recommended eating foods high in melatonin and tryptophan.

Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone in the body that regulates one’s sleep, while tryptophan helps to increase melatonin levels in the body.

Tryptophan isn’t naturally found in the body, but foods that are rich in it include beans, cheese, eggs, fish, milk and nuts.

Meanwhile, fruits such as bananas, cherries and tomatoes, plus walnuts and oats, contain melatonin. 

In order to get a better night’s sleep, Sen suggested eating peanut butter, apples and even avocado toast.

According to Sanchita Sen, foods that are high in fat or spicy tend to prevent sleep.
According to Sanchita Sen, foods that are high in fat or spicy tend to prevent sleep.
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Fruits, nuts and oatmeal double as nutrient-rich foods that can help promote healthy blood sugar levels.

Whole wheat bread also regulates blood sugar, according to Sanchita.

Foods to stay away from before bed

Of course, there are also foods that Sen recommends avoiding before bedtime.

Fruits and vegetables contain melatonin which helps the person fall asleep.
Fruits and vegetables contain melatonin, which helps people fall asleep.
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Unsurprisingly, she suggests people stay away from fried, fatty, high-carb and sugary foods before bed.

She also warns against spicy foods and overeating in general.

Consuming these types of foods can cause indigestion, heartburn, acid reflux, and can slow down one’s metabolism.

Whole wheat bread also regulates blood sugar.
Whole wheat bread also regulates blood sugar.
Getty Images

She also said eating foods high in caffeine will disrupt a peaceful night of sleep, as caffeine can make it harder to fall asleep or to stay asleep.

And if you do enjoy some caffeinated foods before bed and have trouble falling asleep, there are a few methods that may help. 

There’s a military-approved technique that guarantees you’ll fall asleep in two minutes flat, for instance.

Plus, a productivity expert shared five simple steps you can take to help yourself snooze.

This story originally appeared on the Sun and was reproduced here with permission

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