Last Updated on November 3, 2022 by theworldofsleepstaff
Sometimes you fancy something to snack on before bed, and popcorn can often feel like the perfect option. But is it a good idea to eat popcorn before bed?
This article will examine whether eating popcorn before bed is a good idea and whether it could help you sleep better. But simply put, eating popcorn late at night could both help and disrupt sleep depending on the individual situation. It could also have implications for your weight too.
We discuss all, right here. Let’s dive in!
Note: This article is informational and does not constitute medical advice. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Always consult your doctor or qualified healthcare professional before beginning any new treatment program.
Is Popcorn Healthy?
Popcorn is a whole-grain food; as such, it contains a range of nutrients that can benefit health. These include vitamins, minerals, fibre, and antioxidants.
Whole grain foods like popcorn have been linked with a lower risk of several chronic diseases, including heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.
A recent review of a Harvard study found that eating three servings of whole grains per day was associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes.
So, popcorn could be a good option if you’re looking for a healthy snack before bed. But just be sure to choose plain popcorn without any added butter or salt.
Is Eating Popcorn Before Bed a Good Idea?
Popcorn is a whole-grain food which is packed with fibre. This means that it can help fill you up and keep you satisfied until breakfast the following day.
It’s also relatively low in calories, so it’s a good option if you’re watching your weight.
However, popcorn is also high in sugar and carbohydrates. This means that it could give you a sugar rush which could keep you awake at night.
While popcorn can be a healthy and satisfying snack, there are better things to eat before bed. If you’re looking for a snack to help you sleep better, try a small piece of fruit or warm milk.
There are some benefits to snacking on popcorn at night, as we show below…
Some Benefits Of Eating Popcorn Before Bed
Even though eating popcorn before bed might not be the best idea, there are some benefits.
1. Boosts Serotonin Levels
Popcorn is high in tryptophan, an amino acid the body uses to produce serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that plays a role in regulating mood and sleep.
When you eat something that contains tryptophan, your body produces more serotonin. This can help to improve your mood and make you feel more relaxed, which can be helpful if you’re struggling to sleep.
2. Reduces Stress Levels
Eating popcorn can also help to reduce stress levels. Popcorn is a whole-grain food, and eating whole grains has been linked to lower stress levels.
This is because whole grains contain vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can help to reduce inflammation in the body. Inflammation is a significant cause of stress, so eating foods that reduce inflammation can help to reduce stress levels.
3. Promotes Digestion
Another benefit of eating popcorn before bed is that it can help to promote digestion. Popcorn is high in fiber, essential for a healthy digestive system.
Eating popcorn before bed can help keep your digestive system moving, reducing the chances of waking up feeling uncomfortable at night.
But make sure you are not eating the caramel or cheese flavourings, as these could cause indigestion.
Disadvantages Of Eating Popcorn Before Bed
However, there are some disadvantages to eating popcorn before bed. These include:
1. Causes Insomnia
The most significant disadvantage of eating popcorn before bed is that it can cause insomnia. This is because popcorn is high in sugar and carbohydrates, giving you a sugar rush and keeping you awake at night.
If you’re struggling to sleep, it’s best to avoid eating popcorn at night.
2. Increases Weight Gain
Another disadvantage of eating popcorn before bed is that it can increase weight gain. This is because popcorn is high in calories, and if you eat too many calories before bed, you may gain weight.
Even if you’re not trying to lose weight, it’s still important to be aware of the number of calories you’re eating. By eating many calories before bed, you may gain weight over time.
3. Causes Digestive Issues
Eating popcorn before bed can cause digestive issues. The hulls of popcorn can irritate the stomach and cause indigestion.
The kernels can also get stuck in the teeth, leading to cavities. Additionally, the high fiber content of popcorn can cause gas and bloat.
4. Increases Anxiety Levels
Eating popcorn before bed can increase your anxiety levels and make it more difficult to fall asleep. This is because some popcorn contains caffeine, a stimulant that can keep you awake at night.
Is It Bad To Eat Popcorn Every Night?
Eating popcorn every night is okay. Popcorn is a healthy snack that can help promote digestion and reduce stress.
However, there might be better ideas than eating popcorn at night if you’re trying to lose weight. This is because popcorn is high in calories, and eating too many calories can lead to weight gain.
Limiting your popcorn consumption to a few times per week is best if you’re trying to lose weight. Or, if you enjoy eating popcorn, try to make it a healthier snack by popping it in the air fryer instead of using oil.
How To Eat Popcorn At Night?
If you decide to eat popcorn before bed, you should keep a few things in mind.
First, choose plain popcorn without any added butter or salt. These ingredients can make it harder to sleep.
Second, don’t overeat popcorn. A small handful should be enough to give you the benefits without keeping you awake at night.
And finally, make sure you brush your teeth after eating popcorn. This will help remove any lingering popcorn kernels from your teeth, which could cause discomfort while trying to sleep.
How Much Popcorn Should I Eat Before Bed?
If you’re going to eat popcorn before bed, make sure you only eat a small handful. Overeating popcorn can lead to weight gain and keep you awake at night.
A handful of popcorn is about 100 calories, so it’s not a huge snack. However, it’s still important to be mindful of how much you eat.
If you’re still hungry after eating a small handful of popcorn, try adding a bit of protein to your snack. A hard-boiled egg or a few slices of turkey are both excellent options.
If you’re going to eat popcorn before bed, there are a few things you should keep in mind:
– Choose plain popcorn without any added butter or salt.
– Don’t overeat popcorn. A small handful should be enough.
– Make sure you brush your teeth after eating popcorn. This will help to remove any kernels that might be stuck in your teeth.
– If you’re still hungry after eating a small handful of popcorn, try adding protein to your snack.
Can eating popcorn every night make me gain weight?
If you’re trying to maintain a healthy weight, you might wonder if eating popcorn every night can help or hurt your efforts. After all, popcorn is a whole grain relatively low in calories.
However, it’s important to remember that it’s possible to overeat even the healthiest foods. And when it comes to popcorn, it’s easy to do just that.
A single serving of popcorn is about 3 cups (popped). That may not seem like a lot, but it contains around 140 calories. So if you eat an entire bag of popcorn, you’re consuming nearly 600 calories.
Can I eat popcorn after dinner?
Yes, you can eat popcorn after dinner. Popcorn is a whole grain and contains fiber, which can help you feel full. Additionally, popcorn is a good source of antioxidants and has been linked to weight loss and lower blood sugar levels.
However, if you are eating popcorn for dinner, make it healthy by avoiding excessive amounts of butter and salt. You can also top your popcorn with healthy toppings like Parmesan cheese or dried herbs.
Can I eat popcorn after 9 pm?
There’s no hard and fast rule about when you can and cannot eat popcorn. However, eating late at night can sometimes make it harder to sleep. This is because eating can raise your body temperature, making it harder to fall asleep.
Can I eat popcorn after 8 pm?
Avoiding eating popcorn (or any other food) close to bedtime is generally a good idea. Eating late at night can lead to indigestion and disrupt your sleep. If you are craving popcorn before bed, try having a small portion size and avoiding any toppings that could be acidic or spicy.
The Bottom Line
Eating popcorn before bed is fine if you choose plain popcorn without added butter or salt. Additionally, don’t overeat popcorn. A small handful should satisfy your hunger without keeping you up at night.
Finally, ensure you brush your teeth after eating popcorn to remove any kernels that might be stuck in your teeth.