The Nerve racking truth about how Sugar ruins your Sleep
We all have come across how sugar can affect our health. Sugar is bad; sugar is evil; sugar is the devil. Still we use heaps of sugar cubes in our morning tea and coffee.
Too much sugar messes up with your sleep in such a way that your sleeplessness will leave you with a craving for more sugar. A 2016 study found that people who include high amounts of sugar in their diet slept less deeply and displayed greater restless at night.
A US clinical psychologist who specialises in sleep disorders stated that ‘too much sugar leads to a tendency to eat later in the day because blood sugar levels are zigzagging out of control. That adversely affects sleep, and your disrupted sleep will, in turn, produce an even greater craving for sugar the next day. The vicious circle is complete.’
Having too much sugar at night can be detrimental to our health. “When you eat sugar, your blood sugar levels rise and your pancreas releases insulin, which helps the sugar to be taken back into the cells, giving them fuel to run on,” says the dietitian Alex Evans.
Eating sugar late at night overstimulates you. It gives you energy which in turn makes you more active. However, at this time we are designed to slow down and be ready to shut down.
According to Dr Paul Kelley, the average adult needs at least seven hours sleep a night; any less would give you short-term energy boosts, and a combination of bad diet and poor sleep will damage your health further. The rule of thumb is that you should not eat in the two hours before you go to sleep.
The encouraging news is that the craving can be stopped. “Blood sugar is like a roller coaster, but fibrous foods such as wholemeal and granary bread, and potatoes in their skins can help to control it,” says the dietitian Anna Hardman.
Coming on another effect of sugar in our body. It also increases inflammation within the body. While, on the surface, inflammation may not seem to have any direct connection to our quality of sleep, but growing evidence suggests that sleep and inflammation are actually regulated by the exact same biorhythms in our body. Furthermore, inflammation can create or worsen pain or stiffness throughout the body that makes it increasingly difficult to relax, fall asleep, or stay asleep. So, if that bowl of ice cream right before bed is contributing to inflammation, then that late-night snack may be the evil of your sleep.
Foods high in tryptophan are recommended for enhancing sleep. These include beans, lentils, nuts, whole grains and poultry. Or you could opt for a meal with sleep-inducing carbs and some protein.
The less you rely on sugar and caffeine to stay you up through the day, the more you are able to go into healthy sleep at night.