We have all heard the phrase, “you are what you eat” and it does seem to ring true on many levels. Almost every single day I hear someone express how tired they feel. I know several people who do not sleep well on a regular basis. What we don’t realize, is that the food we eat can have a big impact on our sleep quality at night. This can have an enormous impact on your life, let alone your work. Let’s face it, sometimes it actually isn’t the meeting that is so boring that you are falling on your face, it is the fact that many are not well rested.
The food and liquids we consume can often make or break our ability to sleep on time and with quality rest. Here are a few tips to keep in mind to see a change in your own sleep pattern so that you can be at your best during the day, for whomever it is you need to work with or for:
-Tryptophan-rich foods. We’ve all heard about thanksgiving turkey dinners putting everyone to sleep. Well, it truly is a sleep-inducing item! Other foods that contain tryptophan would include poultry, dairy, banans, honey and oats.
– Bedtime snack. It helps to have a small snack before bed, but don’t mistakenly have a large meal or overdo it right before bed. This could have the opposite effect and mess up your digestion, making it difficult to have a restful sleep.
– Not that eating foods that are high in fat are recommended anyway, but here is just one more reason to avoid them. Sleep cycles have been proven to be disrupted by diets consisting of high fat foods such as fast food items.
– It may seem like a no-brainer to avoid a full cup of coffee before bed, but keep in mind that caffeine in its various forms also do play a role in your sleep ability. Caffeine is often found in tea, chocolate and sodas. You might also be aware that it can be found in cold medicines, pain relievers, weight loss pills and the like, so check labels and make sure there isn’t any hiding in there.
– Alcohol. Drinking alcoholic beverages makes you think you are falling asleep easier, but it is not a better sleep and can disrupt a restful sleep.
-Watch the protein. Believe it or not, protein-rich foods are more difficult for your system to digest and this makes it not the best choice for a bed time snack.
– When our kids are young, we try to keep them from drinking fluids after a certain hour at night, well the same rule should apply for adults. You can’t sleep well if you are in need of hitting the restroom throughout the night.
Lack of sleep can have major impacts on the quality of your life in many areas, not just the fact that you will be less alert and capable at work. So pay attention to your evening habits, and you may just find the reason why it has been difficult to get a good night’s sleep. Happy Z’s!