We all know that getting a good night’s sleep is important for your mood, your energy levels, and your overall health. It’s also dependent on what you do during the day—how much physical activity you get, what you eat and drink, and how mentally stimulated you are—especially in the hours before you crawl into bed.
7 THINGS YOU SHOULDN’T DO BEFORE GOING TO SLEEP:
1. Drink Alcohol
You shouldn’t drink alcoholic drinks before going to bed. How this works – well, alcohol tricks you into thinking you will sleep better, because it often makes you drowsy and makes it easier to fall asleep. But as your body begins to metabolize the alcohol, REM sleep, the period where our sleep is most restorative, is reduced. Impaired REM sleep often leads to waking up tired and unable to concentrate.
2. Eat Spicy or Fatty Foods
Having a large meal too close to bedtime can make falling asleep uncomfortable if you’re bloated or painfully full, Spicy or fatty foods may be particularly risky because they’re associated with acid reflux, which often rears its head when a person lies down at night. Ideally, you should have dinner at least two hours before going to sleep, to give your body enough time to begin digesting it. If you’re used to eating something right before bed, stick with sleep-promoting foods like simple carbs or a glass of milk.
3. Drink Coffee
Ladies and gentlemen, did you know that a cup of coffee contains anywhere from 80 to 120 milligrams of caffeine per cup, and you probably already know you should avoid it right before bed. But some still like the idea of a hot drink after dinner, and may not realize that although they’re still several hours away from turning in, their habit could disturb sleep. Truth is, caffeine can stay in the body for up to 12 hours.
4. Take Certain Medications
Here’s what you need to know – well, if you take medicines or supplements on a daily basis and you’re also experiencing sleep problems, ask your doctor whether the time of day you take your dosage may be keeping you awake. For example, antidepressants can have strong effects on sleep in either direction, and some pain medications may upset your stomach and make sleep more difficult. On the other hand, some other medicines—such as some types of blood pressure pills—have been shown to work best when taken at night; talk to your do about when to take yours.
5. Use an e-reader or Smartphone
A recent study has revealed that using electronic devices like e-readers and smartphones, or even watching television in or before bed can disrupt sleep. Many experts around the world highly recommend avoiding any light-emitting technology for at least one hour before bedtime. The blue light given off by computers, smartphones, tablets, and TV prevents the production of melatonin which helps the body become sleepy.
6. Work out too Intensely
Ladies and gentlemen, you’ve probably heard that exercise before bed might keep you awake at night. Well, according to the experts, the amount of physical activity that’s required to have an affect on your sleep is pretty intense, and the vast majority of people don’t get enough exercise as it is—we don’t want people to not work out just because they think it’s too late. In fact, getting regular exercise has been shown to actually help treat insomnia and promote good sleeping habits.
We could go on and on about all the ways smoking is terrible for you, including disturbing your sleep. Many people smoke to relax, but they’re definitely wrong. How this works – well, nicotine is a stimulant and can make insomnia worse, especially if you light up close to your bedtime. Nicotine withdrawal can also cause smokers to wake up earlier than they normally would in the morning.
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