Plain popcorn is a great movie night snack, not just for its fluffy and crunchy texture. It is also a really healthy food for your body. Eating popcorn at night will actually help you to fall asleep a little more quickly.
Eating popcorn at night is great because it contains magnesium; this will help you to relax and fall asleep more quickly. Popcorn also contains fiber and polyphenols which will help your body get rid of any unwanted waste. Eating it at night will also help to stave off midnight cravings.
If you’re still skeptical about these health benefits of eating plain popcorn, read on. We’ll discuss the science behind why plain popcorn is a great thing to have at night, and what benefits it has on your life.
What is the Makeup of Popcorn?
Popcorn is a complex carbohydrate. It takes the body more time to break down a complex carbohydrate. Because it takes longer, you are going to have energy dispersed within your body for a longer period of time. This means that you are going to want to eat less during the day.
Because it is a complex carbohydrate, this means that your body is going to have more regulated levels of sugar. Your blood sugar is less likely to spike and fall, unlike when you eat a piece of candy. A complex carbohydrate is a much better source of sugar and energy for your body.
Popcorn contains a lot of healthy vitamins that you need. Although we won’t go into the different percentages of the vitamins popcorn contains, it is still important to touch on them. Some of the most important vitamins that popcorn contains are B1, B3, B6, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorous, Potassium, Zinc, Copper, and Manganese.
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Does Magnesium in Popcorn Help You Sleep?
Magnesium is very important for our ability to sleep at night. This mineral helps to relax us in the evenings. It reduces stress and helps you to stay asleep longer. In 100 grams of plain popcorn, you get 36% of your recommended daily intake (RDI) of magnesium.
So, when you have a movie night or are reading a book a few hours before bed, having some popcorn as a snack is a great way to prep your body for sleep. As you digest the popcorn, this mineral will be released into your brain, raising your levels of magnesium.
Your muscles will relax and you will begin to feel less stressed. As you have probably guessed, stress is terrible for sleep. Being able to have a treat that is low calorically and helps you to relax is great.
As we mentioned earlier in the article when you have the amount of magnesium that your body needs, you sleep longer at night. If you have trouble staying asleep for more than a few hours, try having a small portion of popcorn.
It will give you that boost in magnesium and you’ll sleep a little bit longer and better.
Does Fiber In Popcorn Help You Sleep and Your Digestion?
Popcorn also contains a lot of fiber; more than you can get from vegetables (you should still eat your vegetables though). Even though our bodies cannot digest fiber, it is important for regulating our digestive system.
When we have a proper amount of fiber, our bowel movements become more regular. Having regular bowel movements is already going to start improving your quality of sleep. You won’t have to experience as much discomfort trying to get to sleep.
However, getting a good intake of fiber helps you in another way. When you get enough fiber, you sleep better and your brain produces more slow-wave frequencies. When you sleep, there are different wave frequencies. These affect what stages of sleep you experience.
When your brain is producing more slow-wave frequencies, your body stays in stage 3-4 of sleep longer. This is the physical restorative process of your sleep, giving your body time to repair micro-tears in your muscle tissue or fight off infections.
Getting good sleep is critical for weight loss and muscle building. Additionally, popcorn is a low-calorie snack, making it even better for those looking for a healthy snack.
Do Polyphenols in Popcorn Help You?
Another great thing about popcorn is that it contains a lot of polyphenols. Polyphenols are great because they act as antioxidants.
Antioxidants are incredibly important for your body because they help to reduce the amount of inflammation that happens in your body. When you experience a lot of inflammation, your body has to work much harder to repair the damage that happens.
Because there is less inflammation occurring in your body, it makes it much easier for the restorative stage of sleep to become more effective. So, not only does popcorn help you stay longer in the restorative stage of sleep, but it also reduces the amount of inflammation that occurs.
This combination is great for your health because it helps to reduce your chance of getting heart disease.
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Can Popcorn Help Stave off Midnight Cravings?
As we mentioned earlier in the article, popcorn is a complex carbohydrate. Again, complex carbohydrates take more time to be broken down into simple sugars. This gives you energy over an extended period of time; this is why whole grains are great for your blood sugar.
This slow-release process is going to make you feel fuller for longer. So, if you eat popcorn before you go to bed, you won’t have to worry about getting those midnight cravings, or 4:00 am cravings if you like to stay up late.
What Kind Of Popcorn Should I Eat at Night?
Before you start eating caramel popcorn in great fistfuls, you need to remember that only plain popcorn will give you all of these benefits. When you start adding lots of butter or sugar, the health benefits of popcorn begin to decrease.
If you have a lot of sugar, you are going to have a spike in your blood sugar and you are going to have to eat more sugar to have energy. So, if you want to enjoy a good night’s sleep or are feeling like you want a snack, eat some plain popcorn.