Miriam Nelson, Ph.D., EatingWell advisor and director of the John Hancock Center for Physical Activity and Nutrition at Tufts, limits herself to one alcoholic drink per day (the recommended guideline for women). David Katz, M.D., EatingWell advisor and director of the Yale University Prevention Research Center, also notes that alcohol can impair sleep. Says Katz, “I love good wine, but I certainly notice adverse effects on my sleep if I overindulge. So I am careful about alcohol intake, both by drinking a moderate amount and by drinking with a meal several hours before bedtime.”
Why it works: Even though alcohol can make you drowsy and help you fall asleep, too much of it can make you wake up at night. In a past issue of EatingWell Magazine, Rachel Johnson, Ph.D., M.P.H, R.D., EatingWell advisor and professor of nutrition and food sciences at the University of Vermont, reported that alcohol may suppress the REM (rapid eye movement) sleep state that’s critical to a good night’s sleep. Follow Katz’s advice and have your drink a few hours before bedtime, if at all.