How long to wait after eating to sleep? The fast pace of life unfortunately does not allow us a specific schedule when it comes to food consumption.
A person who gets up early and eats breakfast early can have dinner at 5 pm, as opposed to a person who sleeps until 1 pm. Such a person can have dinner around 22:00.
But of course, there is a certain time interval when we need to stop eating and go to bed to sleep. To avoid various problems such as heartburn or sleepless nights, you need to spend time before bed.
Time to wait for all the contents of the stomach to reach the small intestine before you take a nap or go to bed.
How long to wait after eating to sleep
Nutritionists say it takes about 3 hours
“The ideal time for dinner is three hours before you go to bed. That’s enough time for your body to digest the food. “And with that, you will not feel bloated when you go to sleep,” claims nutritionist Fara Fahad.
What do you do to your body when you do not eat after 7 pm? Many diets are based on not eating at all after 7pm. If you feel hungry, drink water or tea.
Experts have confirmed that if you have dinner after 7 pm there is a better chance of having a heart attack.
Also, you should not eat just before bedtime, because the body prepares for sleep and there may be a loss of appetite the next day.
It is important what you eat
Food is the fuel that our body needs to function normally. As the body calms down when we sleep, there is no need to consume food just before bedtime.
Eat less and easier
Fatty and spicy foods should certainly be avoided, especially when it comes to dinner. Fatty foods are difficult to digest.
What happens when you eat something greasy and heavy late at night?
Blood goes to the stomach to aid digestion, instead of circulating freely in other parts of the body and helping the body to rest overnight.
What happens to your body if you go to bed right after eating?
People feel drowsy right after eating and in such a situation they do not want to do anything but take a nap. But this is exactly what you should not do.
Sleeping or lying down right after eating can have really unpleasant consequences.
You will have heartburn
Acid is produced during the digestion of food, and gravity is of great help, as it forces the flow of fluid down.
When you lie down, the acid moves through the stomach and can come in contact with sensitive parts of the digestive system.
This can lead to heartburn, a burning sensation in the chest or throat. If you go to bed right after dinner you will not have a good night’s sleep
If you ate a large meal just before napping, the digestion process continues while you sleep.
The cause of a bad dream can be different for everyone. Maybe your brain is more active during the digestive phase causing you not to sleep very soundly.
It also depends on how much and what kind of food you ate.
You will have vivid dreams or nightmares
As we said before, your metabolism helps your brain become more active. When you enter the REM phase, then you are actually dreaming the most.
If you notice that you are dreaming really vivid and even eerie dreams, then try not to eat right before going to bed.
You will need to go to the toilet more often
Some people experience an increased need to urinate at night, known as nocturia.
This may be related to the amount of caffeine in the food you eat.
This means that your food may be a diuretic or in other words, make you urinate more. Caffeine is mostly found in coffee.
But many do not know that it is also found in tea, baked desserts containing chocolate, and some medicines.
You may gain weight
If you go to bed right after eating, your body will not have enough time to burn the calories from your meal.
Although you may feel very sleepy after a big meal and all you want to do is take a nap, it is better to try to stay awake if you do not want to gain a few pounds more.
What to eat and what to avoid at bedtime ?!
Can’t remember the last time you slept well?
Unfortunately, you are not the only person, and lack of sleep has numerous consequences. One of them is obesity.
Harvard researchers have found that people who sleep 6 or less hours a night are 32% more likely to gain up to 15 kg during the year than those who sleep an average of 7 to 8 hours.
In addition, sleep affects concentration and productivity in the workplace. And sleep is significantly affected by the food we eat before going to bed.
And while some products help us sleep better, others disturb our sleep.
However, the most important rule is to avoid heavy and fatty foods in the afternoon and evening, and the last meal to be no later than 19:00.
This practically brings us to the point where eating food should be 3 hours before bedtime.
Foods that are good to eat at bedtime
Drink cherry juice
Cherry juice is an excellent natural source of melatonin.
Scientists from the University of Louisiana have found that natural cherry juice has a very beneficial effect on sleep.
Their research showed that respondents slept an average of 85 minutes longer after drinking two glasses of this juice a day for two consecutive weeks.
Chamomile tea is the best friend of a good night’s sleep. If you want to have a peaceful sleep and sleep like a baby, then make a cup of this tea before going to bed.
Studies have shown that chamomile helps with insomnia, has a calming effect, and stimulates the secretion of glycine, an amino acid that helps us relax.
Eat honey 3 hours before bedtime
If you can not sleep without biting something mild, then it is best to sweeten with a teaspoon of honey.
It is a natural source of carbohydrates that are responsible for a good night’s sleep. Also, consuming honey at bedtime helps you burn fat better during sleep.
Eat popcorn at bedtime
Complex carbohydrates stimulate the secretion of serotonin. It is a hormone that will make you feel more relaxed.
That’s why popcorn is an ideal snack at bedtime, and in addition, it is low in protein and fat.
Foods to avoid at bedtime
Avoid coffee with and without caffeine
We all love coffee, even though we know that caffeine is the number one enemy of dreams. Do not replace ordinary coffee with decaffeinated coffee?
You did not help yourself much. Even that type of coffee is not completely free of caffeine.
If you want to make sure that caffeine does not interfere with your sleep, drink coffee no later than 2 p.m.
Avoid: wine 3 hours before bedtime
Is a glass of good wine a ritual before going to bed? Maybe it’s time to create some new habits that will help you fall asleep faster.
And wine definitely does not fall into that category of food and drink.
Studies have shown that alcohol, although it helps us fall asleep faster, has an extremely bad effect on the quality of sleep.
Avoid dark chocolate and here’s why
Although it is full of necessary antioxidants, it does not mean that it is good to eat in the evening. It contains natural caffeine.
The darker the chocolate, the more caffeine there is because it has a higher percentage of cocoa.
Avoid ice cream
Ice cream is full of fats and sugars that will not break down before going to sleep, will fill you with energy, but all at the wrong time.
In addition, some studies have shown that eating sugary foods at bedtime is associated with nightmares.
How to arrange the food so you do not eat late at night before bed
Scientific evidence suggests that our body knows when to wake up and eat and when to sleep – ie. to rest and not eat.
Therefore, when you eat at an unexpected time, for example at 11 pm when you need to sleep, metabolic organs such as the liver are confused.
This is because they are not ready for the influx of food at that time and therefore the food is not thoroughly processed enough.
This causes problems with insulin and blood sugar levels, and as a result, the body stores a lot more fat than usual.
Studies show that people who regularly eat late, such as people who work late at night and those with night eating syndrome (ie people who eat 25% of their food after dinner) have a higher waist circumference and a higher body mass index than people who eat at conventional times.
Even healthy women who eat late in the day process carbohydrates more slowly. They are also less glucose tolerant and burn fewer calories at rest than women who eat earlier in the day.
What to do:
Many of us eat the least for breakfast and lunch, and the most for dinner. Balance.
This means that the meal should contain 10 to 12dkg of protein, and half a plate should be with vegetables.
Eat a serving of starch or fruit every day. Try to burn 90% of your total calories throughout the day.
That way, you will have only 150-200 calories left in the evening.
A few more reasons to eat 3 hours before bedtime
Taking a horizontal position or lying down immediately after a meal late at night, especially if they are large, may initially create a feeling of comfort and satisfaction.
However, the facts show that digestion is best done in a vertical position.
When the stomach is full of food and we have no “help” from the gravity that pulls food through the intestinal tract, stomach acids (necessary for digestion) can move to the esophagus, causing reflux or heartburn (a feeling of discomfort and burning in the chest. ).
This feeling, in addition to being quite uncomfortable and painful, also disrupts proper sleep. However, it should be noted that not every food works the same way.
In addition to the difficulties that can arise from acids or difficulty digesting food, large meals (especially those combined with carbonated juices) late at night can also leave you without sleep.
Increased risk of weight gain
Perhaps the most dangerous consequence of the habit of eating at bedtime is the increased risk of obesity.
It is difficult to say that there is a direct relationship between obesity and late heavy meals because obesity is a chronic condition for the occurrence of which a combination of many factors are important outside of the diet.
However, it is clear that eating before bed, especially late at night, especially such a habit, increases the risk of obesity and this is the case for several reasons.
First, fast food with a high intensity of taste is often chosen late at night – almost as a rule, unhealthy caloric food, ie “empty calories”.
Second, what we consider to be stressful eating usually takes place in the evening and also means consuming unhealthy foods.
“Eating breakfast regularly and avoiding eating just before bedtime is best for burning fat and losing weight.” This is stated in a new study at Vanderbilt University in Nashville.
The study from Vanderbilt University says that not only the number of calories consumed is important for weight gain, but also the time when they are consumed.
In addition, disturbed sleep in the long run (which can be caused by overeating at night, as mentioned), can also lead to obesity. The problem with eating at bedtime is when it becomes a habit.
In order not to get into the habit, we need to understand that it is very important for the weight loss process to never be hungry.
Therefore, we should not skip meals, which can then lead to a feeling of hunger at night. Have a solid and nutritious dinner, at least 3 hours before bedtime.
The ideal time to eat before bed is 3 hours. The less time there is between eating and sleeping is worse for our body and health.
Eating just before bed can lead to obesity, sleep problems, nightmares, and more.
Of course, care should be taken with the food that we will consume before going to bed, it should be decaffeinated, it should be easier to digest, and so on.
Of course, if we feel hungry or thirsty, then water is the best thing we can consume before bed.
The more we adhere to the rule that our last meal is 3 hours before bedtime, the better and healthier it is for all of us.
- Hi, I am the author of the articles for healthfoodbeauty.com. I have been a professional author for several years and I am very happy to write about health, nutrition, weight loss, and all other topics represented on this site. Nutrition and health are the most important for each of us and that is why we should read and find out new information. New information that we will share with our loved ones, and of course use it for better health of all of us.