You might think that throwing out coffee in the late afternoon or evening might be enough to keep you from feeling very tired at night, but think again.
Sure, it’s smart to replace coffee with other non-caffeinated beverages as the day progresses, such as mint tea or water, but you can also feel the stimulating effects of caffeine by eating certain foods as well.
Therefore, you should be careful about what you put on your plate for dinner and dessert, especially if you have a lower personal tolerance for caffeine and find yourself more sensitive and alert. Here are some sneaky sources of caffeine to watch out for before bedtime.
Milk and ice cream flavored with coffee
Yes, the word “coffee” might sound like a free gift, but we generally don’t consider the flavor the same as coffee – this is a mistake. It’s not easy to get the flavor of coffee without caffeine, unless a product specifically says it’s caffeine-free or caffeine-free.
Most yogurt and coffee-flavored ice cream, as well as any other sauces, snacks, or spreads, contain a good amount of caffeine that may keep you awake. Instead, switch to regular or different-flavored yogurt for an afternoon snack.
Chocolate (and chocolate milk!)
Talking about the rich flavonoid content of dark chocolate for heart health and antioxidants, it’s a great choice for dessert or a sweet snack to settle cravings.
However, if you are a person who is most affected by caffeine, consuming this chocolate dessert can get you too stimulated and make it harder to feel sleepy. If you are sensitive, switch to a different dessert or choose white chocolate that does not contain cocoa. If you work out late at night, don’t drink chocolate milk either for recovery – keep that after you workout only in the morning.
Some cereals and protein bars
While protein bars are easy to eat anytime, anywhere, some contain caffeine depending on the flavor. Be sure to check labels to ensure you don’t eat caffeinated protein bars near the bed – there are many flavors and other decaffeinated options to choose from. You can save caffeinated shots for the morning.
The same goes for cereals and granola, as some containing chocolate or coffee may contain caffeine. For example, Cocoa Puffs will have some traces of caffeine! Always check labels if you are concerned.
Kombucha yerba mate tea
While you might think that kombucha yerba mate, which is an herbal tea, is caffeine-free, it may actually contain some caffeine content. This means that it is no better than coffee, matcha, green tea or black tea during the evening hours.
Check the labels on kombucha to make sure, and know that yerba mate does indeed contain caffeine. And one last tip? Decaffeinated coffee actually has a minimal effect! Therefore, if you are really sensitive to caffeine, avoid it as well.