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Milk at bedtime. - helen-louise
baratron
baratron
Milk at bedtime.
Something weird I've noticed about myself. If I have milk before bed, I usually sleep for as long as I can - either until the alarm goes off, or until I wake up naturally. I almost always wake up in the night needing to pee, but that's just normal for me - I go and do my business, get back into bed and fall asleep again. Total time awake maybe 5 minutes. However, if I don't have milk before bed, I always wake up ravenously hungry much earlier than I need to - after 5 or 6 hours sleep. And I will often be unable to get back to sleep unless I'm able to have milk then or find something to eat.

But a possible problem with this is that, because I need to have soy milk, milk may well not be available last thing at night - especially if I'm travelling away from home. This may be relevant to other people who travel with me - grumpy underslept h-l who woke up too early due to lack of milk is about as much fun as the average caffeine-consumer pre-coffee, but it goes on longer as, yep - food I can eat is similarly not so readily available. I suppose I need to remember to get some of the long-life Oy chocolate milkshake things for when I go places, as they don't need a fridge. They're not quite as nice as the fresh Alpro chocolate "milkshake" I usually have, but still a lot better than "milk-flavoured" soy milk.

The other thing I've noticed which seems rather odd is that other things that you'd have thought would count as milk don't seem to. Like, if I have a pot of soya dessert (sort of like thick custard) or a bowl of custard before bed. Both of these consist primarily of the soy protein, water and flavouring base as the milk itself does; and my common sense would tell me they should be equivalent to a mug of milk. But they're not. With the soy dessert, maybe it's a question of quantity - 125g of dessert is much less than the 250-450ml of milk I usually have (depending on whether I have a small or big mug). But the custard boggles my mind. I swear I had 300ml of custard before bed last night - but I woke up ridiculously hungry after 5 1/2 hours sleep and couldn't even think about sleeping again until I'd had hot chocolate and a couple of biscuits. I really would like to know what's going on there.

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Comments
From: (Anonymous) Date: 9th January 2007 02:26 (UTC) (Link)
There's a protein in milk that encourages sleep. (No, I don't have a source, but I found this out when I was trying to find out how much caffiene was in chocolate milk and was the chocolate milk making my sleep worse?)
baratron From: baratron Date: 9th January 2007 18:32 (UTC) (Link)
Well, I'm aware this is true for cow milk, but I don't actually know about plant milks. And this really doesn't help to answer the question of why soy milk keeps me from waking up ravenously hungry, whereas other things containing roughly similar levels of soy protein don't.
sashajwolf From: sashajwolf Date: 9th January 2007 16:58 (UTC) (Link)
Do the custard and the dessert have more sugars in them than the milk? I know I often get hungry earlier than usual if I've had a meal with a higher sugar content than normal.
baratron From: baratron Date: 9th January 2007 19:08 (UTC) (Link)
Hmmm. They really are very similar. In fact, the vanilla dessert and vanilla custard have absolutely identical ingredients and nutritional ratings - the only difference is that the custard is a bit runnier. I wonder if I can get this to do a table?

Nutrition: typical values per 100g (from the packets)
NutrientChocolate milkVanilla custard
Energy342 kJ336 kJ
Protein3.8 g3.0 g
Carbohydrate10.7 g12.7 g
of which sugars9.1 g9.9 g
Fat2.4 g1.8 g
Fibre1.2 g0.5 g
Calcium140 mg120 mg


So if I compare 300 ml of chocolate milk with 300ml of vanilla custard,
300ml chocolate milk: 11.4g protein, 32.1g carbohydrate (of which 27.3g is sugar), 7.2g fat
300ml vanilla custard: 9.0g protein, 38.1g carbohydrate (of which 29.7g is sugar), 5.4g fat

Doesn't seem different enough to me. But I dunno, maybe an extra 2.4g of protein along with an extra 1.8g of fat does make a difference?
sashajwolf From: sashajwolf Date: 10th January 2007 08:20 (UTC) (Link)
Maybe, but looking at those figures, my guess would be that it's actually the combination of the higher sugar and lower fibre in the custard that's making the difference. The extra 2.4g of sugar is about the equivalent of a teaspoonful, I think. Then 300ml of chocolate milk gives you 2.1g more of fibre than 300ml of custard, which is quite significant. It could easily be 10% of your daily fibre intake. Taking the two together, I can quite see why the custard would leave you feeling hungry sooner than the milk.
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