Eat right

If your sleep pattern is all over the place, regular mealtimes are one of the cues, known as zeitgebers, that can help settle it down.  Eating is a minor zeitgeber, the main one is light, but it can still be influential.

Don’t eat supper so late that you’re kept awake by digestion, and on the other hand, don’t go to bed hungry.  The Myhill article* discusses hypoglycaemia, which Myhill reckons is the cause of various symptoms such as waking up in the middle of the night sweating, overheated, struggling to breathe and/or with racing heartbeat.  If you’re getting this, try to improve your blood sugar levels in general (stay off sugar, switch to wholegrains) and have a small snack last thing at night, such as a handful of almonds.  Some people find that complex carbohydrates are the best things to stabilise blood sugar, some people do better with protein.

If for some reason you’re not eating enough, do remember that this will impact upon your sleep and vice versa.  Poor sleep tends to make nausea and anxiety worse, which is particularly bad news for folks with eating disorders.  I realise that “just eat more” isn’t helpful advice, but if needed do consider talking to a professional about the best way to manage your diet so that it is not causing sleep problems.

* Please note that Dr Myhill is now being viewed with caution.  See the Links page for more information.

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