Attention, insomniacs. What you do before you hit the sack could be keeping you up at night. Here are 5 things to avoid doing, eating or drinking when it’s time to get some zzz’s.

  • High-fat, heavy foods. Eating greasy, fatty foods before bed can not only make you feel sluggish when you wake up, it makes your body have to work hard just to digest it. This can interrupt your sleep. If you must eat late, keep it light, then try to eat no later than 2 hours before going to bed.
  • Screen gazing. Blue light from phone, computer or tablet screens can stimulate the brain, making it more difficult to relax and calm the body.
  • Intense workouts. Exercise is good, but not so good when you need to relax. Working out boosts your heart rate and energy levels so consider getting your exercise in earlier in the day.
  • Burning the midnight oil. Working late or trying to beat those deadlines can cause mental and physical stress. If you must work at night, allow yourself an hour to decompress before going to bed.
  • Sipping caffeine. Keep in mind that caffeine is a stimulant. Avoid coffee, tea and other caffeinated beverages before resting. Drink coffee earlier in the day, even giving yourself a “caffeine cutoff” time to ensure a restful sleep.
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