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Don’t Want Another Sleepless Night? Avoid These 8 Foods

Don’t Want Another Sleepless Night? Avoid These 8 Foods

Everyone knows that our health is largely determined by our diets. But you may not realize that what we eat can affect whether we can sleep tight at night. Actually, there are some foods that disrupt our sleep, making us one of the many insomniacs in the world (30%) lying sleepless and restless! [1]

Nightcaps may sound so cool in books and movies, but in real life, all they do is keeping you awake. As long as you stick to one small drink of alcohol for women and two small for men, it’s fine. More than that usually tends to cause random awakenings [2] at night – leaving you sleepless and tired.

Coffee is another drink you need to stay awake, not fall asleep. Caffeine and its derivatives are stimulants [3] – so unless you want to stay awake to finish that report or assignment, keep that cuppa away.

Want to know what other foods we are talking about? Read on…

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1. Roughage Is Good, Just Not At Bed Time

High-fiber foods are great for health (in moderation) for they aid in good digestion and help in weight loss as they also make you eat less. [4]

However, eating a late dinner with high-fiber foods such as lentils, beans, peas or oatmeal may not make for restful sleep. A late dinner followed by immediate bedtime means you haven’t let the food be digested and your tummy is likely to rumble and grumble its disapproval through the night, leaving you sleepless.

2. More Veggies? Thanks, I’ll Pass

Leafy or green veggies like spinach, kale, broccoli, cabbage, beans and even garlic are good for health but they are also diuretic in nature, [5] meaning they help the body expel toxins via urination.

So eating a hefty helping of these at dinner means you might need a bathroom break at night, and end up having a disturbed sleep as a result

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3. Red Meat At Night, No One’s Delight!

While many experts believe that red meat should be shown the door for good, still others believe that lean meat is, in fact, a great source of protein and good to eat in moderation (but it still has a high fat content too). However, high-protein foods like meat need time to be digested well.

Wading through a steak before snooze time may leave you lying sleepless in bed till the wee hours of the morning with general discomfort, bloating and even cramping. [6]

4. Sugar & Spice, Not So Very Nice

Sodas, sugary drinks or cocktails, and even that bowl of ice-cream may sound like comfort food on days that you are tired but in fact is anything but.

Sugar gives your body a rush of energy [7] – so eating anything that’s giving you a second wind just before bedtime is unlikely to let you, or your body, be at rest. And you’ll be extra tired in the morning because of being sleepless.

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5. Add Some Spice! But Not Too Much Please

While hot food is said to be an aphrodisiac, you better believe that it’s no sleep inducer. Spicy and peppery food irritate the stomach lining which in turns wakes up your brain – meaning you get poor sleep.

6. Frying Up Some Goodies, No Can Do

Fritters, fries and all things deep-fried and nice? Avoid high-fat foods for dinner for the same reason you would avoid a high-protein plate.

The stomach needs to work extra hard to break down and digest the grease – and it can do this best while you’re up and active. If you fall asleep after this heart attack disguised as a meal; expect heartburn, cramping, bathroom trips and morning fatigue.[8]

7. A Chocolate Lover? Have It For Lunch Instead

Eating chocolate can give you a runner’s high [9] with its cocktail of caffeine, theobromine, phenylethylamine and anandamide.

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It can get your heart rate up too. Not something you want when you are trying to snooze!

8. More Burger? No thanks, I’m Chickening Out

In this ever growing list of things to avoid for dinner; add in your favorite burger too and wish it a fond goodbye.

The high-protein chicken, high-carb bread and high-fat spread and fries all together make for a meal that just won’t sit well in your stomach [10] while you snooze. The solution is to eat your dinner early, and keep it as light and balanced as you can.

Now that you have a list of what not to over indulge in at night, have a glass of milk instead [11] to soothe those frazzled nerves. A soothing room and a happy stomach are all you need to avoid being sleepless.

Reference

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Rima Pundir

Health, Wellness & Productivity Writer

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

Boundaries are limits

—they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

1. Self-Awareness Comes First

Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

  • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
  • When do you feel disrespected?
  • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
  • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
  • When do you want to be alone?
  • How much space do you need?

You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

Sample language:

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  • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
  • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
  • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
  • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
  • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
  • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
  • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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Final Thoughts

Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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