The Best & Worst Drinks before Bed

senior sitting in bed drinking a glass of water.

Today, I want to chat with you about something we all hold dear – a good night's sleep.

Now, as we both know, getting a good night's sleep becomes more important as the years roll on. And what we drink before bedtime can make a big difference in how we feel when we wake up. So, let's have a little heart-to-heart about the best and worst bedtime beverages.


The Worst Offenders

1. Alcohol: I know that glass of wine or that nightcap might be tempting, but here's the deal – alcohol might make you doze off initially, but it's like a sneaky thief when it comes to your sleep quality. It messes with your sleep cycle and can leave you feeling like you've been hit by a truck in the morning. Plus, it can crank up inflammation, and we definitely don't want that for our joints.

It's recommended to stop consuming alcohol at least 3-4 hours before bedtime. Alcohol may initially make you drowsy, but it can disrupt the later stages of your sleep cycle, leading to a less restful slumber. So, if you plan to hit the hay at 10 PM, try to finish your last alcoholic drink by 6-7 PM.


2. Caffeine: Let's be real, we love our daily dose of caffeine, but having it before bedtime is like inviting a rowdy party into your bedroom. Caffeine is a stimulant, and it can have you tossing and turning when you should be catching some Z's. It's also not the best pal for your joints and overall well-being.

Ideally, you should avoid caffeine at least 6 hours before bedtime. Caffeine is a stimulant, and its effects can last for several hours. So, if you're aiming for a bedtime around 10 PM, try not to have caffeine after 4 PM.


The Better Choices

1. Herbal Tea: Now, this one's a winner. A warm cup of herbal tea, like chamomile or valerian root, can work wonders. It's calming, soothing, and great for digestion, which is good news for your uric acid levels and those creaky joints.


2. Warm Milk: It might sound like something your grandma would suggest, but warm milk is no joke. It's got tryptophan, which helps your body produce serotonin, the "feel-good" hormone that can help you sleep better. Plus, it's gentle on your system and your joints.


3. Water: And let's not forget the simplest choice of all - water. Staying hydrated is essential for your overall health, including joint and muscle well-being. A glass of water before bedtime can help prevent dehydration, which might otherwise lead to muscle cramps or discomfort during the night. Just remember to moderate your intake to avoid waking up for bathroom trips throughout the night.


So, my friend, as we navigate the wild journey of our 50s and beyond, remember that little things like what you drink before bedtime can have a big impact on how you feel not just in the morning, but in the long run. It's not just about sleep; it's about looking out for our health, our joints, and making every day a little better than the last.

Take care, sleep well, and here's to waking up feeling like a million bucks.


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