Health

Don’t do these two things two hours before bedtime- Sleep expert reveals

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When it comes to natural sleep aids, most of us are familiar with the old, common-sense advice. Have a bath, avoid heavy meals and try not to look at screens. But experts say there are many more tweaks to your evening routine that you may be less familiar with.

For instance, forgoing that curry for dinner can be the difference between a fragmented and restful night sleep, Dr Ankit Parekh, an assistant professor of sleep medicine in the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai has said.

Below, the sleep expert reveals his most important dos and don’ts for getting a good night’s rest without any medical intervention.

DON’T eat chocolate and spicy food, or do cardio. Firstly, choose your evening meal wisely.

You might be aware that eating late — after 8pm — is associated with weight gain and a higher risk of obesity.

But what you eat later at night can also impact your sleep. Specifically, eating spicy or fatty foods in the hours before bed can lead to indigestion, commonly known as heartburn. The symptoms — which include a feeling of acid rising up from the stomach and into the throat — can wake you up, wrecking your sleep quality.

Next, consider keeping your coffee intake for morning hours only. Some research has shown that the stimulant effect of caffeine can remain for about six hours after you consume it. This means your body may feel hyper-alert as you’re preparing to go to bed, making it difficult to wind down.

Dr Parekh suggests quitting the java before 3pm. And while you might think that a couple of beers will send you to sleep, don’t be fooled — it is known to reduce the quality of shut-eye.

When people drink alcohol, it reduces the amount of time they spend in deeper stages of sleep- this is generally the period that your body takes to repair, according to the Sleep Foundation. So losing out on this stage could mean you’re missing out on the health benefits of quality sleep.

Regular booze intake also increases your likelihood of developing sleep apnea, a condition that causes people to stop breathing while asleep.

Alcohol can cause the throat and tongue muscles to relax, which can block the flow of oxygen. This wakes people up repeatedly, making for a poor nights sleep.

When people drink alcohol, it reduces the amount of time they spend in deeper stages of sleep- this is generally the period that your body takes to repair, according to the Sleep Foundation. So losing out on this stage could mean you’re missing out on the health benefits of quality sleep.

Regular booze intake also increases your likelihood of developing sleep apnea, a condition that causes people to stop breathing while asleep.

 

 

 

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