Revealed: Five Diets That Can Disrupt Your Sleep

Did you know that 42% of adults have tried to lose weight at some point in their life? Unfortunately, many people attempt to lose weight by trying out a fad diet. Whilst these may make you lose some weight around your waistline, unfortunately, they promote some unhealthy eating habits and could be the cause of a troubled slumber…

So, to help raise awareness, MattressNextDay have investigated the most popular diets. Using MyFitnessPal, they analysed a typical one-day meal plan for 12 of the UK’s most popular diets, breaking down the daily nutrients in each diet. They then compared the daily nutrient intake to the NHS’ daily recommended amount, before enlisting the help of health specialists to reveal how these nutrient deficiencies can impact a person’s sleep.

Interested in the full findings? Read on to discover what they found…

The Five Worst Diet for Disrupted Sleep, Revealed

Of the 12 diets analysed, they found the following five to be worst for sleep deprivation…

1.Dukan Diet

What deficiency can this cause? A typical one-day meal plan on the Dukan Diet results in consuming 3g of sugar. This is a staggering 97% less than the NHS’s recommended intake at 90g.  

How can this deficiency disrupt sleep? A sudden and dramatic decrease in sugar can make you experience a range of mental and emotional symptoms including anxiety, insomnia and cravings – all of which can cause disrupted sleep. While these are likely temporary, it can make it harder to stick to a healthy diet.

2.South Beach Diet

What deficiency can this cause? A typical one-day meal plan on the South Beach Diet results in consuming 23g of carbohydrates. This is a staggering 91% less than the NHS’s recommended minimum intake at 260g.   

How can this deficiency disrupt sleep? This diet is known for disrupted sleep, with many people waking up several times throughout the night due to the lack of carbs and being hungry. 

Margaret Bell, a transformation health coach at Naturally Empowered Health states: “Eating a lot of protein can affect sleeping patterns as high protein can take longer to digest. Depending on how late you’re eating, you could be setting yourself up for a fall as your digestive system slows down overnight. The later you eat, the less chance you have for it to be digested and that leads to a disrupted sleeping pattern.”

3.Macrobiotic Diet

What deficiency can this cause? A typical one-day meal plan on the Macrobiotic Diet results in consuming 9g of carbohydrates. This is 87% less than the NHS’s recommended maximum intake at 70g.   

How can this deficiency disrupt sleep? Not having enough fat in your diet can reduce your core body temperature at night, and give you less insulation from the cold and keep you awake. In turn, this will make you more mentally fatigued and increase your chances of insomnia. 

4.Alkaline Diet
What deficiency can this cause? A typical one-day meal plan on the Alkaline Diet results in the consumption of just 576 calories. This is 71% less than the NHS’s recommended calorie intake of 2,000.   

How can this deficiency disrupt sleep? This diet works on the theory that making your body more alkaline can help you lose weight, however, this diet is known to have lasting negative effects, and cause fatigue and nutrient deficiencies.

5.Atkins Diet

What deficiency can this cause? A typical one-day meal plan on the Atkins Diet results in consuming 3g of sodium. This is 50% less than the NHS’s recommended intake at 6g.  
How can this deficiency disrupt sleep? A low sodium diet can cause insomnia, because of the increase of a stress hormone which is released on this low carb, high protein diet. What’s more, it can cause fatigue and lethargy, which could encourage people to reach for high energy or sugar-rich food before bed – increasing their chances of a disrupted sleep. 

Top Five Tips for Weight Loss That Won’t Cause Disrupted Sleep

However, it’s not all doom and gloom. MattressNextDay also asked various experts for their advice on weight loss which wouldn’t impact a person’s sleep. They have curated their top five tips below:

1.Eat a balanced diet – You certainly don’t need to deprive yourself of any food you’re craving. However, try to balance your food intake as this will support healthy blood sugar levels and give you the energy you need, whilst keeping yourself fuller for longer.  

2.Smart snacking – Choose snacks with high fibre and protein to help keep you full for longer. For example, wholegrain crackers with cottage cheese, or strawberries dipped in natural yogurt.

3.Increase your vegetable intake – Try to add one or two portions of vegetables to each lunch and dinner to ensure you’re eating a wide range of vitamins, minerals and fibre. 

4.Reduce convenience food – Reduce your intake of these foods and you’ll naturally reduce your sugar intake, too. Instead, opt for slow-releasing foods such as beans, pulses, nuts, whole grains and vegetables.

5.Don’t diet! – If diets worked, there wouldn’t be a diet industry. Diets always involve some form of deprivation and if the body is deprived, it craves whatever you’re depriving off. Instead, follow the 80/20 rule – 80% of the time eat nutritionally dense food, and 20% of the time, allow yourself to have things that you’re craving.

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