Eat These Foods Before Bed to Fall Asleep Faster and Wake Up Feeling Better

Prevailing wisdom says we should never eat right before bed, and mostly, experts agree. Nutritionists generally recommend not eating less than two hours before bed. "When we sleep, everything in our body slows down, including digestion. You want to make sure that your food is processed prior to bedtime so that you can utilize these nutrients for recovery overnight and rest comfortably," explains Chelsea Amengual, Manager of Fitness Programming & Nutrition at Virtual Health Partners. This is particularly key for those with gastrointestinal issues, as going to bed too full can make heartburn and reflux worse.

Eating immediately before bed can affect your sleep quality and weight, too. "People who eat meals close to bedtime may also be more prone to weight gain compared with individuals who eat most of their calories earlier in the day," adds registered dietitian Shauna McQueen, graduate of the Institute from Integrative Nutrition. That said, going to bed is not going to help your sleep quality either, and balance is important. In fact, sometimes having a small snack before bed can actually induce sleep, says Jessica Sepel, clinical nutritionist, best-selling author, and health blogger. "I am passionate about women having a healthy relationship with food, which means I do not want them depriving themselves of something to eat if they are craving something after dinner/before bed," Sepel adds. "It is a good idea to have a few healthy options on hand to enjoy a couple of times a week before bed."

What are some of those before-bed meal and snack ideas? Keep scrolling to find what our nutritionists recommend.