Did you know that there is a relationship between what you eat and how you sleep? That in general, being healthy involves eating a proper diet? Also that a healthy child has a better chance of being successful academically and socially than a child who is relatively unhealthy?
If you want to become successful and enjoy life to its fullest, you must learn to value sleep and proper nutrition.
Here are some tips to help you along:
· Avoid eating heavy meals at night. Supper should be kept light. For example, you could eat cassava, rice or sweet potatoes with groundnut sauce or fish plus green vegetables. Or macaroni with cheese sauce plus vegetable salad (tomatoes + green pepper + avocado).
Actually starch foods such as cassava, rice, macaroni and posho are known to enhance the transfer of sleep inducing chemicals in the brain. In contrast, proteins inhibit the transfer of the same chemicals, and help to maintain alertness.
While a heavy meal may initially induce sleepiness it could cause you to toss and turn later on in the night.
Hence, to sleep relatively better, eat protection foods (eggs,) meat, beans and posho, fish, chicken at breakfast and lunchtime, and a light meal at supper time.
· Avoid all caffeine containing beverages (tea, coffee, cola drinks, chocolate cocoa) within five hours of bedtime.
· Supper should be eaten two to three hours before bedtime. If you are hungry by bedtime, take a glass of warm milk, maize, or millet porridge without sugar.
When planning meals, include some of the following foods daily:
Animal protein: Eggs, fish, yogurt or milk, chicken without skin, and meat without fat.
Plant protein: Groundnut, beans peas, soya bean products, maize, millet and wheat. No single plant food contains complete protein. Two plant protein foods (grains plus nuts or legumes) have to be combined in a meal to form a complete protein. For example, peas, beans, lentils, or groundnut and posho. animal protein is complete and can be eaten on its own.
Starch foods: beans, peas, lentils (legumes and grains contain both starch and protein. Hence they can be used as a starch food too), yams, potatoes, cassava, maize and wheat products.
Fruits: Ripe bananas, watermelon, mango, pawpaw, pineapple, avocado, guava, orange, fene (jackfruit), apples and tangarines.
Vegetables: Green pepper, cabbage, cauliflower, spinach (bugga, dodo), nakati, cassava leaves, collard greens (sukuma wiki), green peas, lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, eggplant, pumpkin, pumpkin leaves and any other green leafy vegetables.
Snacks: Roasted soya bean, groundnuts, simsim and sunflower seeds and sugarcane are highly recommended.
Remember, proper nutrition and adequate sleep are some of the major components of a strong immune system, good health and an alert mind and are necessary for your wellbeing and social success.