An expert on nutrition and sleep discusses research on the worst offenders in bringing on a bad night’s sleep—and a couple of unexpected sleep aids

Most people know that caffeine close to bedtime can interfere with sleep and that tossing back cocktails in the evening can cause a person to wake up a few hours later when the alcohol is metabolized. But less research has been done to understand the effects of food on sleep. One expert, Marie-Pierre St-Onge, an associate professor of nutritional medicine at Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York—and director of the university’s Sleep Center of Excellence—explains the sleep-diet relationship and what foods may disturb your slumber.