Sleep is a very important part of health. Unfortunately, it is increasingly difficult to get proper sleep in this hectic and fast-paced world. Sleep is important in preventing some diseases from developing, such as some forms of cancer and some types of cardiovascular diseases. Despite this, it is still an underrated aspect of taking care of health and is often taken for granted and often it is easily sacrificed for other activities.
Many activities you do may be contributing to a reduced quality and quantity of sleep in your life, including the types of drinks you include in your diet. The following are five such drinks which you should avoid in order to improve the quality and quantity of your sleep.
Although alcoholic drinks make you feel drowsy, they will end up shortening your sleep cycle by reducing the SWS and REM sleep phases. These are periods of sleep where sleeping repairs your body and refreshes your mind, making you wake up much earlier in the middle of the night.
Alcohol can also cause heartburn when the esophageal sphincter, (the muscle that divides the esophagus from the stomach) is relaxed, causing stomach acid to rise up into the throat, leading to intense pains in the chest, thus making it harder to fall asleep.
Ginger contains gingerol, a chemical similar to capsaicin in spices, which are known to reduce sleep by raising the temperature of the body. This is the opposite of what needs to happen for you to sleep well. Your body temperature must decrease for you to sleep properly. The chilly sensation also caused by gingerol in ginger on the tongue, makes it harder for one to go to sleep as well.
Drinking soda close to your bedtime can cause gastrointestinal problems like excessive acid production, and hence lead to heartburn. The resulting pain that ensues will make falling asleep very difficult.
4. Energy drinks
Energy drinks like red bull, are chock full of caffeine and the taurine amino acid. These compounds make you more alert, boosting adrenaline production to make you hyper and alert. These will not help you sleep, as your mind has to be calm and your body low on energy or doing little activity for you to successfully fall asleep.
Coffee of course is well known for the caffeine it contains, and as we have seen, this neuro stimulant is not helpful in getting you to sleep. So avoid drinking coffee at least six hours before you intend to go to bed.
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