I know what you’re thinking. How can something so divine be bad for bedtime? Just the thought of smooth, luscious chocolate gliding in your mouth makes you want to snuggle with a pillow and call it a night.
Chocolate has caffeine though, especially dark chocolate. Caffeine is normally found in the cacao pods used to make chocolate. It is the same thing present in coffee which gives you that morning jolt and extra doses of energy throughout the day. It is a stimulant that improves mental alertness, reduces tiredness, and speeds up your metabolic rate – not exactly the things you want before heading to bed.
Digestion slows down during sleep. And because it takes extra effort for the body to digest spicy food, it will have a harder time doing so during sleep. The body is supposed to rest and recover during this time of the day. Eating spicy food hours before bedtime will disturb the continuity of your sleep and cause you to wake up several times during the night. As a result, you will have poor quality sleep that leaves you tired even if you did manage to get some.
You might want to rethink that late-night order for pizza… for a lot of reasons. That cheesy topping might give you nightmares, according to a recent study, and the acidic tomato sauce can lead to tummy aches and 2 a.m. trips to the bathroom. Plus, pizza is really more than a bedtime snack; eating a second dinner adds a lot of extra calories that you probably don’t need.
Who hasn’t dug into a bowl of comforting breakfast cereal when the late-night munchies strike? Make this a snack habit, though, and your midsection will definitely remain a few cans shy of a six-pack.
The problem with most boxed cereals—and not just the ones adorned with cartoon characters—is that they’re chock-full of sugar, which can spike your blood sugar.
Late in the day, when your metabolism starts to become more sloth-like than Usain Bolt-like, this sudden rise in blood sugar can trigger fat storage and ruin your buff-to-blubber ratio.