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Healthy Diet for Better Sleep

A poor night’s sleep contributes to a host of health conditions, such as obesity, high blood pressure, depression, poor blood sugar regulation or diabetes and more. Making small dietary changes can significantly impact your quality of sleep. Here are a few suggestions:

Eat a Balanced meal

First, it is important to eat well-balanced nutritious meals and snacks throughout the day.  Following this step will keep your blood sugar stable, so you won’t overeat during the day which can cause indigestion and restless sleep. Also, you won’t eat too little for dinner since you might find yourself waking up at night due to hunger.

Remove Food Intolerances

It is important to understand which foods your body is intolerant to.  Food intolerances can lead to various symptoms such as bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhea, headaches, joint pains, and various skin conditions.  Additionally consuming foods that one’s body is intolerant to can also lead to difficulty falling asleep and frequent night waking.  You can get tested to determine which foods your body is intolerant to.

Cut the Caffeine

Poor sleepers are also poor metabolizers of caffeine. Therefore, it is recommended to eliminate caffeine from your diet, which is a natural stimulant.  The usual half-life of caffeine is about 3-4 hours, hence people that consume caffeine around lunch time will still have some of the active chemicals present in their bodies 3-4 hours later.  Beware of hidden caffeine in chocolate, cola, tea, ice cream, decaffeinated coffee and even certain medications, such as pain relievers, weight loss pills, diuretics, and cold medicine. It is important to check the labels of all foods and nonprescription drugs to ensure it does not contain products that will interfere with your sleep.

Banish the Booze

Most people turn to alcohol to fall asleep.  It will help initially in falling asleep, however after a couple of hours when the effect wares off it will make your restless and sleepless. Alcohol initially enhances the effect of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) which is a relaxing neurotransmitter.  However, since the effects are enhanced, after a few hours the brain cells can no longer secrete GABA leading to a deficient GABA state resulting in poor sleep maintenance.

Consume Tryptophan-Rich Foods

Did your mother or grandmother ever offer you a warm glass of milk before bedtime so you can sleep better? 

That is because it is rich in tryptophan, a precursor to serotonin.  Serotonin is a neurotransmitter or chemical that promotes relaxation and sleep.  Other foods high in tryptophan include nuts and seeds, bananas, honey, and eggs.

Turn to Carbs before Bedtime

Foods that are high in protein are great during the daytime.   However, when it comes to sleeping, enjoy a small carbohydrate-rich snack before bedtime. The carbohydrates have ample amount of tryptophan making you feel calm and sleepy.  Try snacking on any one of the following: a whole wheat toast, oats; banana, grapes, papaya, sweet potatoes, yams, green peas, pumpkin, etc.

Avoid Heavy and Spicy Foods

Eating a big heavy meal late at night is not recommended as it can cause indigestion and heartburn which will conflict with a goodnight’s sleep.  Ensure that you finish a heavy meal at least 3-4 hours before bedtime.

Fluid Restriction

Staying hydrated during the day is essential. However, if you want to reduce frequent washroom trips in the middle of the night, then avoid drinking any fluids within 2 hours before bedtime.  Small sips are acceptable if you need to take medications or take your medications earlier if a full glass of fluid is required.

Note:  Besides these dietary tips, there are many other ways that I as a Naturopath in Oakville can use to help you get better sleep.

Resources:

National Sleep Foundation. “Healthy Sleeping Tips.”
Thakkar MM, Sharma R, Sahota P. “Alcohol disrupts sleep homeostasis.” Alcohol. 2014 Nov 11. pii: S0741-8329(14)20115-7. 

Naturopathic Clinic Services

Naturopathic doctors are primary healthcare providers that manages variety of conditions. Some of which include the following:

Women's Health and Wellness

Women's Health and Wellness

Naturopathic doctors often specialize in women's health and wellness, providing preventive care and support for women during all stages of life.

Women's Health and Wellness

Men’s Health and Wellness

Men’s Health and Wellness

Naturopathic doctors may also recommend specific dietary changes or supplements to support overall health and well-being. Naturopathic Health can help improve symptoms such as hormone imbalances, sexual health issues, prostate problems, and low testosterone levels.

Men’s Health and Wellness

Mental Health

Mental Health

Naturopathic Health is safe and effective for treating a variety of mental health conditions, including depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. Holistic approach may be particularly beneficial for people with mental health concerns, as it can help to address the underlying causes of their symptoms.

  • Attention problems – ADD and ADHD
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Emotional issues – anger, frustration, irritability
  • Insomnia/sleep disturbance
  • Panic attacks
  • Stress management
Mental Health Treatment

Integumentary System, Skin Conditions

Integumentary System, Skin Conditions

Naturopathic doctor specializes in the integumentary system, which includes the skin, hair, and nails. Naturopathic doctors can treat a variety of skin conditions, such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis. Naturopathic doctors typically use complex academic jargon when discussing treatment options with their patients.

Integumentary System, Skin Diseases

Endocrinology Conditions

Endocrinology Conditions

This is because naturopaths have extensive training in anatomy, physiology, and pathology, as well as in the use of natural therapies. Some of the most common endocrine conditions that naturopaths help to treat include diabetes, thyroid dysfunction, and adrenal fatigue.

  • Adrenal Fatigue
  • Diabetes
  • High Cortisol
  • Thyroid Issues – Hyperthyroidism
  • Thyroid Issues – Hypothyroidism
  • Insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome
  • Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
Endocrinology Conditions

Cardiovascular Conditions

Cardiovascular Conditions

Naturopathic doctors provides holistic care and are able to help people with a wide range of cardiovascular conditions. They use natural therapies to help improve circulation, lower blood pressure, and reduce the risk of heart disease.

  • Anemia
  • Angina
  • Arteriosclerosis
  • High cholesterol, Hypercholesterolemia
  • High blood pressure/hypertension
  • Palpitations
  • Peripheral vascular disease
  • Varicose veins
Cardiovascular Conditions

Immune System Condition, Autoimmune disorders

Immune System Condition, Autoimmune disorders

An immune system condition is any condition that affects the immune system. This can include things like infections, autoimmune diseases, and allergies.

  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Immune deficiency
  • Hypersensitivity disorders – allergies, food/chemical sensitivity, anaphylaxis, urticaria
  • Infections – colds and flu, ear infections (otitis media, otitis externa), tonsillitis, bronchitis, sinusitis
  • Upper respiratory infections (symptoms include: a sore throat, runny nose, nasal congestion, facial pain, shortness of breath/wheezing, productive and non-productive cough)
Immune System Condition, Autoimmune disorders

Rheumatologic and Musculoskeletal Conditions

Rheumatologic and Musculoskeletal Conditions

A Naturopathic Doctor (ND) is a licensed health care provider who uses natural therapies to treat a variety of medical conditions, including rheumatologic and musculoskeletal conditions. Rheumatologic and musculoskeletal conditions are a type of medical problem that can cause pain, inflammation, and limited movement in the joints.

  • Arthritis / Arthralgia (joint pain)
  • Chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia
  • Muscle tension
  • Nerve/Neurological pain
  • Neck, back, shoulder, hip, knee pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sports injuries
  • Tendonitis
Rheumatologic and Musculoskeletal Conditions

Respiratory System Conditions

Respiratory System Conditions

A naturopathic doctor (ND) holistic approach that focuses on the whole person, rather than just the symptoms of the illness. Naturopaths believe that the body has an innate ability to heal itself.

  • Allergies
  • Asthma, Bronchitis
  • Colds and Flus
  • Coughs - productive and non-productive
  • Pneumonia
Respiratory System Conditions

Gastrointestinal Conditions

Gastrointestinal Conditions

A naturopathic doctor for gastrointestinal conditions typically uses a variety of natural therapies to help restore the health of the gastrointestinal tract.

  • Food intolerance
  • Gastritis
  • Gastroenteritis
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), H.Pylori, Heartburn
  • General abdominal pain, bloating, flatulence
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Hepatitis
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) – constipation, diarrhea
  • Infant Colic
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) – Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative colitis
  • Nausea/Vomiting
  • Peptic ulcers
Gastrointestinal Conditions

Neurology and Pain Management

Neurology and Pain Management

Naturopathic doctors are trained in a variety of natural therapies which can be used to help treat neurological conditions. Some of these therapies include botanical medicine, homeopathy, and acupuncture.

  • Bell’s Palsy
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Diabetic Neuropathy
  • Genitourinary/Renal System Conditions
  • Glomerulonephritis
  • Kidney Stones
  • Pyelonephritis
  • Sciatica
  • Thoracic Outlet Syndrome
  • Tinnitus
  • Trigeminal Neuralgia
  • Urinary Tract Infections (UTI) – urinary frequency, urgency, burning on urination
  • Vertigo and dizziness
Neurology and Pain Management

Lab Tests

We provide different types of lab tests
which can help you to understand what is
happening to your body.

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