Living with one or more chronic illnesses often coincides with poor sleep. Lack of quality sleep may be due to the illness itself or to side effects from medication needed to manage the illness. This frustrating cycle calls for us to juggle treatment methods while we aim for a satisfying quality of life rather than one that is just tolerable. A crucial key to restful sleep is to eat a balanced diet and avoid using food to self medicate. Food may be the last horizon of indulgence since those of us with chronic illness are typically told to avoid alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine…so food becomes the drug of choice to feel better. Food is enjoyable, yes…though using food to calm emotions, fight boredom, relieve stress, and to numb pain is problematic. Certain foods contain some of the most specific healing nutrients on the planet. Junk foods, on the other hand, contain poisons such as carcinogens, nitrates, saturated fats, and overly processed ingredients that wreak havoc on our organs and lack any nutritional benefit. Eating too close to bedtime is also taxing on our system. Digestion requires a great deal of energy. This is why it is suggested that you avoid eating 2-3 hours before going to bed. A very small snack, such as a plain baked potato is light and may even help you to sleep due to the affect a skin on potato has on serotonin levels. Speak to your doctor about your sleep and healthy steps you can take to improve.
Be Well! ~Tiffany