The Unique Relationship Between Nutrition & Sleep

Ashleigh Kidd, RD, LDN | November 2023

Welcome to Week 4 Challengers! Congratulations on making it more than half way through the Challenge! As you learn more about your nutrition through the F45 Training App and gain valuable insight on your recovery & sleep habits through your Whoop device, let’s dive in on how the two are connected.

How sleep impacts what we eat:

As it turns out, sleep (or lack thereof) can directly affect our food and nutrition choices. This is because sleep deprivation disrupts our hormones, namely leptin & ghrelin, which regulate our hunger and fullness. As a result, we may feel hungrier than usual, less satisfied after eating, and craving foods higher in sugar. When we’re tired or consistently have disrupted sleep, our hunger/fullness cues aren’t as easy to interpret and we’re more likely to impulsively eat vs. eating mindfully.

How what we eat impacts our sleep:

Likewise, what we eat can also have a significant impact on our quality of sleep. Certain foods and beverages like caffeine and alcohol can disrupt sleep-wake cycles including difficulty falling asleep, and fragmented sleep and wake-ups during the night. Some studies have also shown eating a larger meal (especially higher in fat), or a snack higher in sugar close to bedtime can make it difficult to fall (and stay) asleep.

Determining what is helping/hurting your sleep:

If you’re struggling to fall/stay asleep, or noticing you’re more tired than usual, it can be helpful to keep a food and sleep diary to track your food/beverage intake (including time of day), as well as your sleep patterns. This can help you to identify if any foods/beverages may be interfering with your sleep. 

Supporting sleep through nutrition:

Other ways to potentially improve your sleep:

Using your Whoop Journal, you can log your nightly routine and gain insight on how it’s affecting your recovery, and learn which “pre-bed activities” work best for you.

Learn more about tracking with WHOOP here and if you haven’t picked up a WHOOP band yet visit