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episode #241

New Study: Higher Carbs Could Affect Sleep Quality!

April 10, 2023 in Podcast


Today's episode features a recent study comparing 3 days of lower-protein, higher-carb dieting vs. higher-protein, lower-carb dieting effects on sleep quality, sleep efficiency and time to fall asleep with the same total calorie intake.

They found that there were differences in sleep efficiency, sleep latency, and REM and N1 sleep stages as well as marked differences in REM sleep latency and cortical arousals were detected.

The higher-carb, lower-protein condition resulted in higher sleep quality, efficiency and a shorter time to fall asleep. It also reduced energy intake the next day, primarily due to reduced snacking.

Interesting finding from this short term study and it might be something you could experiment with to see how it affects your sleep quality! I would just have that last meal of the day be about 3-4 hours before bed to allow for adequate digestion and see which macronutrient ratio best fits your needs!

Let me know if you're going to try this to help your sleep quality!

Episode Resources:


Brian (1s):

Hello and welcome to the Get Lean and Eat Clean podcast. My name is Brian grn. I'm a certified health coach, trainer and author, and this podcast is for middle-aged men and women looking to optimize their health and get their bodies back to what it once was 10 to 15 years ago. I will give you simple, actionable items to get long-term sustainable results. Thanks for listening and enjoy the show. All right, welcome to the Get Lean ean podcast. My name is Brian Grin. I hope you at a great weekend and hope you enjoyed some nice weather. I was able to get out and play nine holes yesterday, which was really enjoyable and so always loved getting out, getting a little bit of sun and, and playing a little golf.

Brian (48s):

So it is Master's Week, so hopefully if you're a golf fan, you're looking forward to that. And hopefully also listen to my interview, my recent interview with Dr. Michael Turner, who's a graduate of Stanford University. Smart guy, he's had tons of different patients through integrative medicine and helping individuals with, you know, thyroid function, testosterone, and much, much more. We touched on how he passed this Navy Seals fitness test, which I thought was pretty cool because it's something you can, you can do on your own. Just Google Navy Seals fitness test and you know, you could use this as almost a goal, like a landmark that you wanna sort of aim towards. I think that's helpful when you're trying to whether get in shape, stay in shape, you know, you always see with people, especially sometimes I have clients, and they come, they say, well, I want to be ready for this wedding or this, this big event.

Brian (1m 39s):

And I think it's important to have something to work towards. So I really enjoyed my interview with Dr. Turner. So if you haven't listened to it, check that one out. That's episode two 40. Now on today's micro podcast. I know you're enjoying some of these studies that I've bring it up. So here's another one which was sent over to me from Menno, Hensel Man's, who I've had on my podcast, so even haven't listened to that interview. Definitely check that out. And Meno brought this study really comparing carbs and protein and the amount of it, the amount of that macronutrient, how it affects your sleep. And so the, the title, which was on the study, which was done in 2022, iso caloric diets with different protein carb ratios, the effect on sleep, melatonin secretion, and subsequent nutritional response in healthy young men.

Brian (2m 33s):

And so I believe it took 24 young men and test them over like a three day period. So short term study. So take it for what it is, but comparing a high protein, low carb versus low protein high carb diet and see how it's effect on, pretty much on sleep quality, on sleep efficiency, and really measuring melatonin levels. And so to see, you know, how our brains reacted to these different macronutrient counts. And the conclusion of the study was the higher carb, lower protein condition resulted in higher sleep quality, efficiency and a shorter time to fall asleep.

Brian (3m 16s):

Another thing that it found out was that they, they, there was a reduction in energy intake the next day primarily due to reduce snacking. So in this study, the higher carb, lower protein was sort of the winner. If you wanna say, again, this was just one study. There's to, there's tons of, you're, I'm seeing more and more studies done on circadian rhythm and how different macronutrients can affect your sleep quality. And this was just obviously one study done. So take it for what it is. But the bottom line is it the sleep quality was pretty much attributed to higher melatonin levels and melatonin, sort of that sleep hormone from the amino acid tryptophan.

Brian (3m 57s):

And so from eating a not too high protein and a high carb meal, it promoted melatonin synthesis and sleep quality. So this might be something you can test out as their last meal a day. I would not say, you know, cont you know, don't do any protein. I would say have a, a moderate amount maybe in that last meal, maybe 20 grams, give or take 20, 30 grams and have higher carbs. Maybe, you know, some whole food, carbs, fruit or maybe like a sweet potato or something like that. See how that affects your, you know, not only your sleep, but maybe even the next day. Maybe you have less satiety hormones, you know, maybe you're less sat tidy, excuse me, not less sat tidy, more satiety and you have less sort of, you know, hunger cravings throughout that next day.

Brian (4m 48s):

And so I'm curious to see how, how this will affect you. So let me know if you do try this. I've been implementing a little bit more carbs into my diet. I find, I don't know if it, I can't say it. I've, I've had it, it's had a direct effect on my sleep per se. But I will say I found that I am performing a bit better in the gym and I'm recovering a little bit better. But again, that's just, you know, that's just me. So try it out yourself and see how it goes. You can always adjust and, and move on. I'm always a big fan of self experimentation. So the bottom line from this study was more carbs and less protein as that last meal a day can help, might be able to help you sleep better. I'll leave a link in the show notes and all I'll say is that if you're gonna do, you know, obviously test around with this, just make sure you're not eating too close to bedtime.

Brian (5m 33s):

Give yourself, you know, maybe three to four hours bef before for that last meal. And then you can die L allows for digestion and, and get into a better sleep either way. So try it out. Let me know how it goes. Comment below or email me, Brian Brian Green dot com. I'm curious to see, and I'll leave a link in the show notes, like I said for the study. Do you have any questions? Email me, Brian Brian Green dot com. Hope you're enjoying some of these micro podcasts that I'm doing with studies. If you are, feel free to leave a review. Would love a five star review, that'd be great. And anyways, have a great rest of the week. I'll talk to you on Friday with another great interview.

Brian (6m 13s):

And thanks so much for listening. Thanks for listening to the Get Lean EAN podcast. I understand there are millions of other podcasts out there and you've chosen to listen to mine and I appreciate that. Check out the show notes@briangrin.com for everything that was mentioned in this episode. Feel free to subscribe to the podcast and share it with a friend or family member that's looking to get their body back to what it once was. Thanks again and have a great day.

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