Foods That Affect Your Sleep

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Most people know that drinking caffeine close to bedtime can hinder their ability to fall asleep, but you may be surprised to know that there are a variety of other foods that can affect the quality of sleep you’re getting. If you find that you have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep, making some simple dietary adjustments may help.

  • Tryptophan is an amino acid that aids in healthy sleep. Known for its role as a sleep inducer in turkey, it can also be found in foods like cheese, eggs, and milk.
  • Carbohydrates tend to increase the level of tryptophan in the blood, so eating carbs in conjunction with dairy may help induce sleep.
  • Avoid heavy meals or fatty foods before bed, which can jumpstart the digestive process and cause sleep disruptions.
  • Caffeine comes in many forms, not just soda and coffee. Try not to have chocolate, tea, coffee, or ice cream at least four hours before bed.
  • Pain relievers like over-the-counter headache medication often contain caffeine. Talk to your doctor if you are experiencing sleep problems and are routinely taking pain relievers.

Cutting down on fatty foods and increasing your activity level may help you to lose weight, which could improve some sleep disorders like obstructive sleep apnea.

Sleep Disorder Treatment in the Tampa Bay Area

If you think you may be suffering from a sleep disorder, talk to your physician about getting a referral for a sleep evaluation at a BayCare Sleep Disorders Center in the Tampa Bay area. You can also learn more about our sleep disorder services by calling (866) 328-9932, registering for an informational class or event. Feel free to browse our online resources about Sleep Habits to Avoid and good Sleep Hygiene.