We must keep our diet clean to lead a healthy life. Do you know what counts the most in this case? Even more than your calorie intake in a day? “What you eat in a day & when” should be your topmost concern if you want to eat healthy food & keep fit. You must curate your meal according to your clock to keep it beneficial. Finding a balanced meal for your breakfast, lunch dinner and snacks can get really difficult without a dietician or a nutritionist. There are certain foods to avoid eating at night or in the daytime.
Don’t worry, here we are to help you out with your night schedule. It is really important to keep your dinner healthy because in most cases that becomes your last meal for the day.
Foods to Avoid Eating at Night
Having anything and everything for dinner isn’t really a cool option and therefore we have curated here a list of absolute 25 no-nos for dinner. You must try & avoid these few items at dinner time by all means.
1. Ice cream:
Most of us love a scoop or more of our favorite ice cream before crawling into our bed. We call it our comfort food as we stay absolutely oblivious of the fact that having ice creams during the night time can ruin our sleep schedule. This adds ice creams to the list of foods to avoid eating at night.
Famous nutritionists have pointed out that ice creams are high in sugar which increases our insulin levels. This can make it difficult for us to fall asleep at night.
Some of us also pick ice cream as our midnight snack but it can boost our cortisol levels which are also known as the stress hormone that technically increases our stress levels. Therefore, ice cream can never be the right snack or dessert for you at night.
2. Processed food:
Processed food like salami, sausages & ham must be avoided at all costs before going to bed or for dinner. It can cause health hazards like high blood pressure, heart diseases & obesity. Processed meat is heavy on a lot of sugar, salt, calories, and trans fat. Therefore, you must avoid these in your dinnertime to do away with unnecessary weight gain.
Any food that is high in acid content is not good to consume during the night time. Acid-reflux can be caused by these food items that disrupt sleep. You must eat an orange or a grapefruit before going to bed. These fruits should never make it to your nighttime meal.
Almost all of us love to devour a pizza all by ourselves in the night time to kill the stress from the day’s work. True it does work like magic in such a case but this wholesome tasty meal comes at a big cost.
Pizzas are highly loaded with cheese which is all about unhealthy fat, the sauces contain sugar and the dough is rich in carbs. This whole recipe makes it the best way to gain weight. Also, non-vegetarian pizzas have processed meat in most cases for toppings which also adds a bit of trans fat to this whole dish of happiness.
So if you wanna stay fit or lose some weight for that matter, do stick to your traditional home-made healthy food for dinners. Something as harmful as pizza is one of the foods to avoid eating at night.
Tomato is also a fruit that is high in acidic content. It also causes heartburn that reduces your chances to fall asleep comfortably during the night time. You must get your sleep adequately at night and consuming tomato or any tomato-based food right before you go to sleep can hamper that.
If you are dairy intolerant, then you must not consume cheese along with your dinner. Most intolerances cause pain, inflammation, or gas which in turn disrupt your sleep.
Whereas on the other hand, if you aren’t intolerant, then you are only allowed to have a few special types of cheeses at night. Aged cheeses increase alertness and decrease sleep quality, making them a bad choice for dinner.
It is always good to opt for goat cheese, crumbly feta, and halloumi at night.
Nuts are widely known as the seat of good nutrients but having them at night is not really a very good idea according to the nutritionists. Cashews, walnuts, almonds, pistachios are good for our health but they also have a fair bit of calories imbibed within themselves. That is exactly why scientists ask us to avoid nuts before we go to sleep. The best time to enjoy your nuts is always post-workout.
8. Canned fruit juice:
Commercial fruit juices are loaded with soda and sugar. These lack the fiber that we naturally get from our organic fruit juices. If you are fond of fruit juices then get yourself a juicer and churn out a glass of freshly made fruit juice and drink that.
Avoid drinking canned fruit juices laden with sugar during the night. These products are also known to promote obesity in children.
The relaxing glass of booze right before going to bed might be doing a lot more to you than you think it does. You might think that it helps you to fall asleep but wine actually prevents you from indulging in the REM(Rapid Eye Movement). REM cycle is the one that provides us with real restful sleep.
Alcohol is also a form of muscle relaxer which can also make you snore throughout the night.
Unfortunately, beer is also not a good option for you to unwind with during the night time. It dehydrates your body and causes muscle cramping in the middle of the night. It can also disrupt your sleep schedule every two-three hours.
Caffeine is meant to stimulate our central nervous system until the next 8 hours of its intake. If you’re very sensitive to it then you might even stay up the whole night. Therefore, it’s always better to stay from coffee near your bedtime.
Sodas aren’t a good drink for the night because they are extremely sugary and they have absolutely no nutrients in them whatsoever. Gulping down a big bottle or glass of soda right before going to bed, will only contribute to your calorie intake in a day.
It breaks my heart to tell you that even a chocolate bar isn’t a good dessert or midnight option for you at night. Like caffeine, dark chocolate also creates and keeps you alert as well to a certain extent. They do not help with your REMs. So, if you really cannot drop your chocolate then do have it much before you go to sleep.
14. Commercial peanut butter:
Peanut butter is widely known for its health benefits. But most of us are unaware of the fact that the commercial peanut butter is made with a lot of sugar & salt along with hydrogenated vegetable oils. These ingredients make these kinds of butter an absolute unhealthy intake for night time.
Also, peanuts themselves have very high-calorie content, making it a strict no-no at nights.
15. Fatty foods:
It breaks my heart to tell you guys that you have to give up on your favorite loaded burritos & burgers in dinners. These high-fat foods are very difficult food items. This leads to fragmented sleep making it the most unfit item for dinner.
16. High-sugar cereals:
Do give up on your favorite fruity loops during the night time if you want to stay healthy. These spike the sugar levels in your body and that interrupts your sleep. Choose a cereal with less than five grams of sugar per serving.
17. French fries:
French fries are everyone’s favorite and we can have them at any time of the day. Although no one has a lot of french fries, even a few of them can cause harm to your health. They are deep-fried and have a lot of calories in them. Also, we tend to eat these fries with some sauce or ketchup which is again a very good source of sugar and calories. Therefore, this is one of the foods to avoid eating at night.
18. Hot pepper & spicy food:
Spicy foods boost up your metabolism rate and they cause heartburns. Hot pepper or any spicy food changes your body temperature. This keeps the person awake for a longer time and disturbs their sleep at night.
19. Dry fruits:
Dry fruits have high fiber content which might upset your stomach or give you cramps during the night. Gas might also be formed in your stomach if you consume a lot of dry fruits. Nutritionists are also suggesting widely these days that we stop consuming dry fruits with our morning oats.
Most people prefer popping a peppermint into their mouth right before they go to bed to freshen up their breath. Peppermint does have a lot of other benefits but it triggers heat burns which cause sleep disturbances. Do avoid drinking mint teas before bed for the same reason.
21. Cakes, muffins, doughnuts:
Do not eat anything that is made out of refined flour for your dinner because these contain a lot of sugar & added fats. They do not add any nutrients to your meals and along with that, these contribute to your weight gain.
To maintain your fitness, you must cut down on your favorite Christmas snacks as much as possible at night.
22. Green tea:
To everyone who wants to get rid of their love handles, green tea is a favorite. But drinking a cup of this amazing concoction right before bedtime isn’t safe. With regular caffeine, it also consists of theobromine and theophylline which increases heart rate, nervousness, and also anxiety level.
So, you must avoid this favorite drink of yours right before you go to bed.
23. Raw onions:
Having raw onions for dinner might cause that gas pressure that you do not want to face in your night time. It might also make your stomach feel weird so this should surely stay out of your salad in dinners. It can also promote heat burns in a few cases.
24. Water :
We are advised to drink a lot of water throughout the day but we must cut down on our water intake post 8 pm in the night. Too much water intake can disturb your sleep to a greater extent because you might end up in the washroom several times in the middle of the night for obvious reasons.
No one wants to get out of their beds when they are wonderfully tucked in.
So, do keep in check your water intake levels.
Just like you cannot drink before bedtime, it is always advised that you don’t smoke as well to unwind. Nicotine is a stimulant just like caffeine and that might keep you awake throughout the night. So do skip smoking in and around your bedtime so that you do not end up messing up your sleep.