How to sleep: Two of the worst foods to have before bed – the surprising ‘culprits’

SLEEPING through the night is not something everyone is always able to do, and there is a lot of advice to be found around improving your quality of sleep, and adopting healthy sleep routines.

By HARRIET WHITEHEAD21:19, Mon, Jan 31, 2022 | UPDATED: 21:19, Mon, Jan 31, 20220Copy link

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Everyone needs different amounts of sleep. On average adults need seven to nine hours, while children need nine to 13 hours. Toddlers and babies need 12 to 17 hours of sleep, every day. The NHS says how we sleep and how much sleep we need is different for all of us and changes as we get older.

The NHS says: “Most people experience problems with sleep in their life. In fact, it’s thought that a third of Brits will have episodes of insomnia at some point.”SponsoredAll Things AutoNew Mazda’s Are Almost Being Given Awayby Taboola

“Some people are naturally lighter sleepers or take longer to drop off, while some life circumstances might make it more likely for your sleep to be interrupted, like stressful events or having a new baby.”The Sleep Association says tomatoes are “not good pre-bedtime”. The health body adds: “Tomatoes aren’t the only food that can cause acid reflux. Onions create gas as they move through your digestive system.”

Indeed, it explains: “That gas affects the pressure within your stomach, which can send acid back up your esophagus, especially when you’re lying down flat. Sadly, both raw and grilled onions have this effect.”

It adds: “You already know to stay away from coffee late at night, but that’s not the only culprit when it comes to sleep issues and food.”

READ MORE: Diabetes: How to ‘flush out’ excess sugar – signs of high blood sugar

woman lying down

Everyone needs different amounts of sleep. (Image: GETTY)


Caffeine and alcohol can stop you falling asleep and prevent good quality sleep. Therefore, it is recommended that people cut down on alcohol and avoid caffeine close to bedtime.

Caffeine interferes with the process of falling asleep, and also prevents deep sleep.

Cutting out caffeine is not as simple as just ditching coffee. Caffeine can be found in other sources too. These include:

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