Pineapple is available around the world, but did you know drinking pineapple juice before bed could actually help you sleep? That’s directly due to the nutrients contained within this sweet tropical fruit. Here we’ll explain exactly why, as well as show you the other incredible health benefits you’ll get when drinking this delicious juice.
Drinking Pineapple juice before bed: A delicious sleep aid
Pineapples have been cultivated and eaten for generations, and in the 21st century they can be found in a wide variety of dishes from fruit salads to pizza!
However drinking pineapple juice before bed can directly help you sleep due to the presence of melatonin in pineapple. This hormone regulates the sleep-wake cycle and is so important to our sleep health that often individuals who are struggling to sleep – or have been diagnosed with insomnia – are prescribed melatonin.
In fact, in a study looking at fruits that have melatonin, consumption of pineapple was seen to increase melatonin markers in the body by an extraordinary 266%. Compare that with banana (180%) or orange (47%) and you can see exactly how drinking pineapple before bed can top up your natural melatonin levels at the right time.
The reason for that dramatic rise is not just down to the melatonin content of pineapple, but also due to the fact pineapple contains the amino acid tryptophan and mood-enhancing hormone serotonin. Both have a role to play in inducing sleep, and are needed in order for the body to produce that all-important sleep hormone – melatonin!
It doesn’t end there either. Pineapple also contains magnesium. Why’s that notable? Well supplementing with magnesium has been shown to help relieve symptoms of insomnia and improve sleep efficiency, sleep time and sleep onset. It’s also been shown to reduce anxiety – one of the leading causes of insomnia.
However there is one caveat. Pineapple juice is high in sugar content – especially when store bought – so drinking too much before bed over a prolonged period may result in weight gain.
Drinking pineapple juice before bed could help sleep quality and onset due to the presence of tryptophan, serotonin melatonin and magnesium in pineapple. All of which have been shown to have a positive effect on sleep quality.
Drinking Pineapple juice before bed: Any other HEALTH benefits?
Pineapple is also an anti-inflammatory, and is loaded with antioxidants. Both are crucial to keeping your health in check, and can even reverse damage done to your body.
In particular pineapple is high in an enzyme called bromelain which is known to be anti-inflammatory. This remarkable enzyme only exists in pineapples and has such powerful anti-inflammatory properties that one research study concluded that it ‘can be used as an effective health supplement to prevent cancer, diabetes, and various cardiovascular diseases in the long run’.
Another study came to the conclusion that bromelain inhibited the growth of colorectal cancer cells, another said there’s potential for it in the treatment of arthritis, and it’s even been touted in research as a treatment for acne. The enzyme is available throughout the fruit, but can be found in higher concentrations in the stem, core, and in pineapple juice.
Drinking pineapple juice could therefore help fend off many major diseases like heart disease, arthritis, and Alzheimer’s which are often linked to chronic inflammation. So incorporating anti-inflammatory foods into your diet – like pineapple or kiwi – is a no-brainer.
Pineapple juice is also a great source of antioxidants – such as Vitamin C. That’s important as antioxidants appear to have a direct effect on sleep quality, as they support the immune system and help promote restfulness at night.
Antioxidant foods also help protect your body and can even reverse damage that has been done by oxidative stress. Oxidative stress comes about when there’s an imbalance between free radical molecules (which can cause harm) and antioxidants – that imbalance then causes illness and tissue damage. The result can be the development of diseases such as cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, heart disease and many others. Therefore eating antioxidant foods – like pineapple or garlic – should be a priority.
Pineapple juice has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant qualities. Because of that, several studies have shown pineapple to have a positive effect on health, protect against disease, and boost the immune system.
Pineapple: Incorporating it into your diet
This sweet tropical fruit is a favourite around the world, and is incorporated in both sweet and savoury dishes. However ee recommend making your own juice at home and adding no extra sugar. Eating it in its natural form (and eating the core as well) is good as well.
You can include pineapple in a sweet and savoury dish too – like sweet and sour chicken – or add some cut up pieces to yoghurt, muesli, bake it in a cake, or include it as part of a fruit salad.
For its full sleep benefits, we recommend eating two or three slices of pineapple an hour before bed, or having a small glass of pineapple juice with your evening meal.
Pineapple juice before bed: What about side effects?
If you don’t have a pineapple allergy then moderate consumption of pineapple juice shouldn’t cause any side effects. However, eating pineapple in excess could result in heartburn, an upset stomach, diarrhoea, and even nausea.
As always, we recommend consulting with your doctor if undertaking a diet change, or if you have concerns about how a specific food may interact with any preexisting conditions or medicines.