Hot sauce is good, but painful

Your alarm just seems to keep going off earlier and earlier. But, sadly, it’s not. It’s just that your sleep is not nearly as sound as it once was, and you’re not sure why. Sleepless nights are not just annoying, but having too many of them consistently can leave you worn out, grumpy and can potentially put your health at risk.

Now, sometimes the reason you’re not sleeping well can be easily pinpointed (work is super stressful, you’re going through a rough patch in your relationship), but sometimes, the cause is a bit more mysterious. For example, did you know that your sleep patterns can be influenced by what you eat? Read on to discover some of the foods (and a few drinks) that may be contributing to your sleepless nights.

Fatty foods can keep you up

Try to refrain from eating fatty foods before going to bed. Foods, such as greasy pizza, French fries and potato chips, can cause indigestion. According to Health.com, fat stimulates the production of acid in the stomach. The acid can then spill up into the esophagus and cause heartburn. Yuck.

Lots of raw veggies are hard to digest

This pains me to type, but consuming lots of raw veggies before bed may not be a good idea. Raw veggies are incredibly good for you, yes, but they will move incredibly slowly through your digestive system all night long.

Spicy foods

You know what else can cause indigestion? Spicy foods. Spicy foods (think hot sauce, curry, hot peppers) can cause heartburn when you lay down.

Cheese and cured meats

Cheese contains tyramine, which can cause you to feel alert. This amino acid can boost the secretion of the brain stimulant norepinephrine. Also: Meats, such as bacon, pepperoni and sausage, contain high levels of tyramine, too.

Dark chocolate

Some dark chocolate bars contain up to 80 milligrams of caffeine. Consume all your dark chocolate in the morning. 

Other things that keep you awake

Protein: Makes digestion slow.

Booze: Alcoholic drinks can give you that oh-so-placid feeling before you doze off, but come 3 a.m. – zing! You’re up and wide-awake. Alcohol can leave you dehydrated (awake and thirsty with a headache) and can generally disrupt your sleep.

Caffeine: If you consume large amounts of caffeine through the day, you may be setting yourself up for a sleepless night. Make sure you consume your daily dose of caffeine in the morning.

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