Foods That Disrupt Sleep and Cause Bad Dreams

I don’t watch scary movies or crime thrilling television shows before bed anymore. Why? Because they give me nightmares. But what I didn’t realize is that my choice of bedtime snack could also be putting a damper on my quality slumber. Actually, quite a few scholars have penned missives concerning the link between what you eat and how you sleep. After all, dating back to antiquity, Hippocrates hypothesized the idea of food-dependent dreaming based on food intolerances and other adverse reactions to food that materialized in bizarre, disturbing dreams.

Today, numerous follow up studies are still investigating the “Dream of the Rarebit Fiend,” first created in comic strip form in the early 1900s to poke fun at how Welsh rarebit disturbed the dreams of those who consumed it…


Sorry pasta lovers, if you tend to eat carb-heavy meals (i.e., bread and pasta) prior to bedtime, you’re likely experiencing the disturbing after effects in your dreams.  A study published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology polled 396 college students on their eating habits prior to sleep.

Researchers found that participants who noshed on pasta or bread experienced upsetting dreams and disrupted sleep. Researchers explain that as the body converts sugar (or glucose) from pasta and bread into energy in the body, the process is bound to keep you awake. Bottom line: eat carb-heavy meals earlier to avoid sleep disruption.

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Emily Lockhart

Emily Lockhart is a certified yoga instructor and personal trainer. She believes that being healthy is a lifestyle choice, not a punishment or temporary fix to attain a desired fitness or body image goal. Anna helps her clients take responsibility for their own health and wellness through her classes and articles on ActiveBeat.