Have you ever stopped to think how much sleep quality can be associated with food? Coffee is known as one of the main villains for those who seek to achieve a good night’s sleep, but there are also foods that can contribute to improving sleep and well-being. Nutritionist Gabriela Cilla explains what to eat and what to avoid before going to bed. See below
The banana is one of sleep’s friends, according to the expert, because the fruit contains tryptophan, a neurotransmitter that participates in the melatonin cascade – a hormone released naturally at the beginning of the night and which signals the body that it needs to prepare for sleep – . “Then the banana improves and promotes muscle relaxation and induces relaxation”, explains the nutritionist.
It is also worth betting on oatmeal, another source of tryptophan, which contains fibers that cause relaxation and improve sleep quality. Banana and oatmeal can be used together in different recipes, not only in traditional porridge, but also in cakes and pancakes, for example.
The apple also enters the list of fruits that relax and that are worth betting on in the evening meals. “As a source of quercetin, a very potent antioxidant, apples help improve sleep transmission, that is, this cascade from serotonin to melatonin, inducing relaxation,” says Gabriela.
Avocado stands out as a source of glutathione, a type of antioxidant considered one of the most potent for promoting relaxation. “Avocado not only contributes to the improvement of healing, but also to induce sleep”, says the nutritionist.
“Grapes are a source of resveratrol, a very potent antioxidant for cardiovascular protection, as well as inducing [o corpo] to relaxation”, emphasizes Gabriela
Dairy products, such as yogurts, milk and cheeses, are good allies for those who want to regulate sleep. “They have essential base amino acids that improve the promotion of muscle relaxation and induce sleep”, explains the nutritionist.
The specialist points out that dried fruits such as apricots, goji berries, dried cranberries and dates are sources of potassium, magnesium and B-complex vitamins. night”, says
In the list of foods that are considered sleep villains, sugar stands out as one of the main ones because it is excitatory for the nervous system, which prevents relaxation. “Any food that contains an exacerbated amount of sugar, refined sweets such as stuffed cookies, chocolates or even puddings and jams, can even cause a relationship of relaxation in post-consumption, however, they can get in the way because they are excitatory”, explains the nutritionist.
Coffees and guarana-based energy drinks should be avoided overnight, as well as green tea. “As much as green tea has an antioxidant that promotes relaxation, the source of caffeine is excitatory for the nervous system, and its consumption is not interesting”, emphasizes the specialist.
It might even seem like a good idea to eat a portion of fries overnight, or even a hamburger with crispy bacon… But for the body and sleep, it’s not. “Fried foods in general are slowly digestible, we need to have a very high gastric permeability and at this moment the metabolism is resting on account of hormonal releases, so they are not interesting to be consumed at night”, explains Gabriela.
Despite being considered relaxing, alcoholic beverages are also excitatory for the nervous system, which directly impacts the quality of sleep. “Alcohol doesn’t let relaxation happen and interrupts the melatonin cascade,” says the nutritionist.