Nutritional effects on sleep

West J Nurs Res. 2013 Apr;35(4):497-513. doi: 10.1177/0193945911416379. Epub 2011 Aug 4.


The purpose of this study was to examine the nutritional effects on sleep using actigraphy measures. A repeated-measures, counterbalanced, crossover study design was used to administer treatment diets to 44 adult participants. Participants served as their own control and consumed high-protein, high-fat, high-carbohydrate, and control diets. The study participants wore Motionlogger Actigraph sleep watches while consuming weighed food intakes for 4 days over four different treatment periods. Demographic and laboratory data were also analyzed. Actigraph results showed that the wake episodes and sleep latencies were significantly different when comparing the macronutrient intakes of the participants. Post hoc test results showed that high-protein diets were associated with significantly fewer (p = .03) wake episodes and high-carbohydrate diets were associated with significantly shorter (p < .01) sleep latencies than control diets. Thus, consumption of specific macronutrient intakes may have a significant influence on sleep.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Actigraphy
  • Adult
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Dietary Carbohydrates / administration & dosage
  • Dietary Fats / administration & dosage
  • Dietary Proteins / administration & dosage
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Nutritional Status*
  • Sleep*


  • Dietary Carbohydrates
  • Dietary Fats
  • Dietary Proteins