Refined Carbohydrates Can Lead to Insomnia

Refined Carbohydrates Can Lead to Insomnia

It is estimated that more than 30% of adults are affected by insomnia, and a new study argues that their diet can be one of the causes. The study argues that postmenopausal women who consume a diet that contains a high amount of refined carbohydrates, especially extra sugar, can contribute to the appearance of insomnia.

Previous research has inferred that there may be a possible link between refined carbohydrates and insomnia, but the results tended to be inconsistent in most cases. Since the studies did not follow the diets of the individuals over time, it is not clear if the insomnia was triggered by refined carbs or by the consumption of sweets.

The team of researchers collected data from more than 50,000 participants enrolled in the Women’s Health initiative. These women kept detailed food diaries, and the researchers could acquire relevant information about their diets.

Diet Rich in Refined Carbohydrates Can Lead to Insomnia

It is worth mentioning that different types of carbohydrates can lead to different increases in blood sugar revel. Those who are highly refined, among which we can count white bread, white rice, and soda, possess a higher glycemic index and can boost the blood sugar level at a faster rate.

When blood sugar levels rise quickly, the body will release insulin. As the blood level sugar will start to decrease, the body can release hormones like adrenaline and cortisol, and these hormones can hamper regular sleep patterns.

Further research revealed that the risk of developing insomnia rose on par with that of the glycemic index. Also, women who consume a large number of vegetables and whole fruits featured a lower insomnia risk. While whole fruits contain sugar the fiber content will slow the rate at which it is absorbed and prevents blood sugar spikes. This highlights refined carbs as the culprit. A paper was published in a scientific journal.


Anna is an avid blogger with an educational background in medicine and mental health. She is a generalist with many other interests including nutrition, women's health, astronomy and photography. In her free time from work and writing, Anna enjoys nature walks, reading, and listening to jazz and classical music.

Post Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.