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Most of us take supplements to stay on top of our health. More than half of all adults have taken a dietary supplement in the past 30 days.
While supplements can’t substitute the nutrition obtained from healthy food, there are some instances where vitamins and supplements are required.
For example, calcium promotes healthy bones and reduces bone loss while folic acid lowers the risk of birth defects in pregnant women.
That said, recent research has found that taking multiple vitamins and supplements may lead to poor sleep.
Although researchers aren’t entirely sure how poor sleep and vitamin intake are connected, many theorize that their effects on sleep hormones serotonin and melatonin may play a role.
If you want better rest while staying on top of your nutrition and health, you may want to consider avoiding these five supplements (especially before bed).
Guarana has become an increasingly popular weight loss supplement that helps to increase thermogenesis within the body thanks to its stimulating effects.
Guarana is harvested as a berry in its place of origin, South America. Like most weight loss supplements, it typically contains high amounts of caffeine.
Caffeine is often used in weight loss supplements due to its theorized ability to suppress appetite and raise our metabolism.
In fact, caffeine is thought to increase our resting metabolic rate by anywhere from 3 to 11 percent. Moreover, research shows that it may boost fat burning by as much as 10 to 29 percent.
That said, too much caffeine may also increase cortisol, leading to increased stress and anxiety.
Caffeine not only increases anxiety – it’s also known to hinder sleep quality. That’s why it’s so important to read the labels on vitamins and supplements, as a caffeine overdose is possible if you stack on other caffeine sources like morning coffee.
If you still want to take a supplement that supports your metabolism without disrupting your sleep patterns, switch to a stimulant-free supplement like turmeric.
Curcumin, a compound found in turmeric, is thought to aid in quality sleep while also acting as an anti-inflammatory, metabolism-boosting antioxidant.
The main takeaway? Just because a supplement is popular doesn’t mean it’s healthy – and the same can be said for ashwagandha.
Ashwagandha is a popular herb typically used in traditional Indian medicine as an adaptogen.
It’s thought to:
This shrub originated from Asia and Africa and has recently gained popularity on Tik Tok for its potential benefits.
However, many who have tried out ashwagandha for stress relief report feeling emotionally blunted or depressed after long-term use.
Moreover, it’s known to elevate heart rate and cause insomnia, headaches, and gastrointestinal issues.
Ashwagandha can even cause a rapid drop in blood sugar levels, worsening irritability and sleep quality.
Opt for an herbal stress reliever that also helps to promote the onset of sleep instead, like chamomile.
Aside from specific herbs with special uses, certain common vitamins and minerals that many people take daily can also hinder our sleep.
For example, it may surprise you that too much vitamin C might be keeping you up at night.
Vitamin C is touted as the optimal supplement for an improved immune system.
Beyond that, it’s thought to keep us more energized throughout the day and was even proven to reduce cortisol levels ina 2015 study.
Vitamin C helps the body convert fat into energy, fighting fatigue while boosting focus and alertness levels.
The body uses vitamin C to create carnitine, a molecule that helps to transport fat into the mitochondria of our cells.
Once inside the cell, fat is then converted into energy.
For this reason, the timing and dosage of vitamin C are vital. Taking large doses before bedtime may cause you to feel overly energized and stimulated, making it difficult to fall asleep.
What’s more, vitamin C is acidic and may cause gastrointestinal discomfort, especially in people with gastroesophageal reflux disease.
If we ingest too much vitamin C, the body flushes out any extra, only furthering digestive discomfort that may lead to poor sleep.
Be sure to supplement vitamin C in the morning and stick to daily intake guidelines, which site 75 mg per day for women and 90 mg per day for men.
Watching your levels of B vitamins (like B12 and B6) is important for sleep health, too.
Vitamin B12 helps to keep your blood and nerve cells in working order while assisting the body with the creation of DNA.
Moreover, it helps to prevent anemia, which is known to make people feel weak and fatigued.
It’s even thought to help improve depression, as low levels of B12 have been linked to a higher risk of depression over time.
Vitamin B12 contributes to energy production in the body by helping to convert carbohydrates into usable glucose, which your body can then absorb for energy.
That said, some studies show that elevated B12 levels lead to sleeplessness. While it increases energy levels, it may increase them in a way that leads to trouble getting adequate rest.
The same can be said for vitamin B6, which is important for maintaining the nervous system and immune system.
While a lack of vitamin B6 is linked to sleep disturbance, so is too much of it.
In fact, a 2002 study found that vitamin B6 led to vivid, bizarre, and emotional dreams (that may, in turn, disrupt our sleep).
Surprisingly, vitamin D and insomnia are also closely connected.
Vitamin D is important for maintaining a quality immune system and keeping bones and teeth healthy – and most of us are extremely deficient in it!
It’s even been called an epidemic by the International Journal of Health Sciences.
That said, our bodies synthesize vitamin D from sunlight in a different manner than we convert vitamin D from supplementation.
When we take vitamin D in pill form, it may suppress melatonin generation and cause sleep disturbances.
Recent studies show that taking upwards of 2,000 IU of vitamin D per day may worsen sleep quality for postmenopausal women undergoing weight loss.
There’s not much more research on the general public when it comes to high levels of vitamin D and insomnia – especially when compared to vitamin D deficiencies – but we do know that it can lead to strange dreams.
If taken too closely to bedtime, too much vitamin D is believed to cause vivid dreams and lucid dreaming, which, in turn, create insomnia.
What’s more, vitamin D obtained from sunlight may remain active in the body for longer durations (and convert more efficiently) than when taken orally.
The bottom line? Try to seek out vitamin D from the sun rather than supplements when you can. If you do choose to supplement vitamin D in combination with sunlight exposure, opt not to take over 600 IU per day unless otherwise instructed by your doctor.
As an added benefit, sunlight exposure in the morning is proven to boost our sleep patterns and keep our circadian rhythm in check for better sleep, making it a solid swap for preventing vitamin D-induced insomnia.
Another addition to your routine that boosts sleep rather than hindering it? Mouth tape.
Sometimes, vitamins and supplements are necessary to fill in the gaps within your diet. The same is true for your sleep routine.
While some supplements like vitamin D cause insomnia, others may help boost your sleep. The same can be said for external supplements like eye masks, your favorite pillow, or mouth tape.
Yes, you read that right! Mouth taping at night prevents snoring and improves sleep quality by changing how we breathe while at rest.
Mouth breathing causes airway tissues to collapse, producing the disruptive sound of snoring. If left untreated, snoring fragments sleep over time and may even cause sleep disorders and health complications.
Mouth taping, however, encourages nasal breathing as the only breathing option. Nasal breathing leads to better oxygenation, enhanced sleep, and the prevention of disordered breathing as you rest.
@somnifix Nasal breathing boosts oxygenation & prevents overbreathing! 🫁 #andrewhuberman #hubermanlab #biohack #nueroscience #nasalbreathing #learntok ♬ Aesthetic - Tollan Kim
Our noses warm and filter the air we breathe while keeping harmful irritants out of our lungs. Mouth tape ensures that we nasal breathe into the night by preventing the mouth from falling open.
Before you pick any old tape around the house, be forewarned that most tapes contain harmful irritants that may lead to skin rashes.
SomniFix was designed with this issue in mind, Our strips are hypoallergenic and void from both latex and gluten, making them the perfect solution for even the most sensitive skin.
Our strips even contain a central breathing vent that will help you acclimate to the sensation of mouth taping overnight.
As you adjust your supplement intake for better sleep, add SomniFix as the perfect supplement for your best overnight breathing (and sleep) yet.
If you don't LOVE your sleep in 7 nights, we'll give your money back guaranteed! 🌟