Do you have problems sleeping? If so, you’re not alone. Almost 9 million Americans take prescription sleeping pills. What’s eating everyone… literally?
Believe it or not, sometimes the foods you are eating during the day are keeping you awake at night.
It’s well-recognized that caffeine can keep us awake and that some people are more sensitive to caffeine than others. I used to be a caffeine-aholic, not able to start my day without a cup or two of coffee and often drinking coffee late into the night. Funnily enough, I had terrible insomnia many nights, not falling asleep until the wee hours of the morning.
Then I gave up both coffee and caffeine because I was trying to stop the hives (that’s another story). The funny thing was that I started sleeping better and I realized that I didn’t need the caffeine to feel awake in the morning anymore. After a couple of years, I reintroduced decaf coffee and seemed to be fine, but the moment I had a sip of a caffeinated drink, my teeth would clench, my jaw would ache, my legs would tremble, I wouldn’t sleep well and I would feel hungover the next day. All that from a sip or two of regular coffee.
I’m happier without the caffeine, and I feel lucky to have figured out a secret to sleeping better. More than ten years later, I’m still falling asleep easily and waking up without any craving for caffeine.
Food sensitivities may be delayed by as long as four days after ingestion, making it very difficult to identify the culprits that may be keeping you awake at night. In my nutritional therapy practice I hear over and over how much better people sleep once they identify their inflammatory triggers and change their diet accordingly.
Whether it’s caffeine or another food or chemical that is triggering reactions in your body, what you are eating can make a huge difference in how well you are sleeping. Food sensitivity testing can point you in the right direction.