For those people with obstructive sleep-apnea, making responsible choices during the holidays is important. This is especially true when it comes to what and how much you eat and drink this time of year.
Holiday parties are full of rich delicious foods and various types alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. If you have obstructive sleep-apnea, make sure that you avoid these foods that can exacerbate your symptoms:
- While a food that is traditionally fixed in large quantities during the holidays, bananas are something that those with obstructive sleep-apnea should avoid. This fruits is usually considered healthy and is full of fiber and nutrients, but it also can increase mucus production which will irritate sleep-apnea symptoms. Make sure to avoid the banana crème pie especially as the bananas, sugar, and dairy is a triple threat to this condition.
- High-fat Dairy. Things like whole milk, heavy cream, and rich cheeses can trigger or worsen sleep apnea symptoms. These items are high in saturated fat and can increase this risk for heart disease, a condition those with sleep-apnea are already at high-risk for developing.
- High-fat Meats. Also a food high in saturated fats, these meats could increase the risk for cardiovascular disease. People with sleep apnea are already at risk for cardiovascular disease, so anything that adds to that risk is dangerous. Instead, trade the high-fat meat choices like steak for proteins like fish or turkey breast. Avoid fast food at all costs.
- Refined Carbohydrates. Foods high in added sugars like corn syrup, honey, cane sugar and enriched flour are all hard on the cardiovascular system. This means that they are dangerous for people with sleep apnea. Choose foods that have whole grains in the ingredients list rather than enriched grains or flour.
- The holidays are a time for fun parties and delicious foods. This setting usually includes some type of alcoholic beverage. But, for those with sleep apnea, alcohol can be dangerous. Because obstructive sleep apnea means that the person stops breathing for a period of time while they are sleeping, drinking alcohol causes the person to not be as aware of their breathing while they are sleeping. It is best to avoid alcohol all together if you have sleep apnea.
Make sure that your sleep apnea doesn’t impact your holiday season. Follow these tips for food and drinks to avoid so that you enjoy your holiday season without exacerbating your symptoms.