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SLEEPING WELL IN ORANGE COUNTY Part 2

Not Sleeping Well? Here Are 3 Possible Causes - The Trent

Welcome to Part 2 in our 10-part series on what foods to, and not to eat in order to fall and stay asleep.  Last week we learned that lack of exercise or consumption of liquor or caffeine too close to bedtime can impair our sleep. We also learned that the foods we eat daily, and more importantly close to bedtime can either help or hinder the sleep process.

Following is a “do” eat food, and a “don’t” eat food intended to provide you with ways to achieve better sleep.  It is my sincere desire that one or all of these useful tips will help you in your pursuit of better rest and sounder sleep. Please feel free to post your antidotes and comments.

For Better Sleep
DO
EAT KALE

Sleeping Well in Orange County on My Local OC 

Kale, somewhat new to the U.S. and emerging in grocery stores around 2014, has been popular in northern Europe for many years.  During the middle ages, it was planted and consumed by humans and fed to livestock as well. In the 1800’s it’s said that Thomas Jefferson experimented with several varieties of Kale on the plantations of his Monticello estate in Charlottesville, VA. Curly Kale is the most common selection available to us today and can be identified by its bright green ruffle-like leaves. It has a somewhat sweet and peppery flavor.  It is a nutrition-hero because of its amounts of vitamins A, K, B6 and C, potassium, copper, and manganese. One cup of raw Kale has only 33 calories and 7 carbohydrates.  I personally love a Kale salad.  But because of its cruciferous nature, I make sure to chop the leaves into small pieces, making it easier to chew, swallow, and digest. It’s loaded with lots of fiber, prebiotics and probiotics keeping your gut healthy and your colon cleansed.

KALE’S SLEEP QUALITIES
Kale and another leafy-green superhero, Spinach, are jam-packed with Calcium which helps our bodies produce sleep-inducing melatonin. If possible, eat Kale raw, as the heat while cooking may reduce the amount of vitamin C. Because of its fibrous nature, try and eat it 3-4 hours before bedtime, to avoid it waking you up for a nature-call.

For Better Sleep
DON’T
EAT GRAPEFRUIT

Navel Oranges and Ruby Red Grapefruit - Hale Groves, shipping fresh Florida citr

Grapefruit, you say with puzzlement.  Isn’t grapefruit good for me? The answer to that is yes…

  • It’s Low in Calories, Yet High in Nutrients. …
  • It May Benefit Your Immune System. …
  • May Promote Appetite Control. …
  • It Has Been Shown to Aid Weight Loss. …
  • Grapefruit May Help Prevent Insulin Resistance and Diabetes. …
  • Eating Grapefruit May Improve Heart Health. …
  • It’s High in Powerful Antioxidants. …
  • May Reduce the Risk of Kidney Stones.

But if you are looking for foods to help you sleep, then the answer is no. It is highly acidic, and acidic foods can worsen symptoms of heartburn, which can cause sleep-disrupting acid reflux. And you won’t find a much-more acidic food than grapefruit or oranges.

Grapefruit also contains small amounts of tyramine which triggers the brain to release norepinephrine, a stimulant known to increase brain activity and inhibit sleep.  If you are going to consume grapefruit, best to eat it in the morning, and no more than a ½ cup a day.

What’s the take-away?
Do eat Kale to your heart’s delight but be sure to stop consumption 3-4 hours before bedtime because of its fibrous content. Don’t eat grapefruit 3-4 hours before bedtime due to its acidic content which will keep you awake. And if you do eat it, try to eat it for breakfast and limit it to ½ cup. That’s it for this week.  Please feel free to comment on our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/mylocaloc or this blog page, and See You Around The OC!

 

Patricia Braun is the Owner and Publisher of My Local OC. She has been in Marketing for over 20-years and considers it a privilege to work in an industry that is not only her area of expertise but her passion as well.

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