Getting enough sleep can benefit everything from your mood to your immune system, but more than a third of people struggle to get the recommended seven (or more!) hours per night.
Sleeping well at night is incredibly important, isn’t it?
The most common sleep disorder is, by far, insomnia. Changing your diet is an easy, natural way to help cure your insomnia. By eating certain sleep-inducing foods each night, there is a possibility that you will experience better sleep.
Getting more minerals like potassium, magnesium, calcium, and iron on your plate can help kickstart the production of melatonin, the hormone responsible for sleep regulation. So, what are the foods that might help you sleep?
Taking both traditional knowledge and scientific research into account, as well as nutritional profiles, here are the best foods and drinks for sleep:
Almonds contain high doses of melatonin, a hormone that helps regulate the sleeping and waking cycle.
A 1-ounce (oz) serving of whole almonds also contains 77 milligrams (mg) of magnesium and 76 mg of calcium, two minerals that may help promote muscle relaxation and sleep.
Almonds are also a healthful evening snack, as they are high in good fats and low in sugar and saturated fats. Almonds are available in the form of almond butter for a healthy snack online.
2. Warm milk
Warm milk is a common home remedy for sleeplessness. Milk contains four sleep-promoting compounds: tryptophan, calcium, vitamin D, and melatonin.
However, the childhood association that many people have between a warm cup of milk and bedtime may be more effective than tryptophan or melatonin in promoting sleep. Having a warm cup of milk before bed can be a relaxing nightly ritual.
Low-fat milk is also a great snack because it is nutritious and low in calories. Each cup of 1-per cent low-fat milk contains 7.99 grams (g) of protein, 300 mg of calcium, 499 international units (IU) of vitamin A, 101 IU of vitamin D, 101 calories.
3. Kiwi fruit
Some research has shown the link between kiwi consumption and sleep. Kiwifruit possesses numerous vitamins and minerals, most notably vitamins C and E as well as potassium and folate.
In a study, people who ate two kiwis one hour before bedtime found that they fell asleep faster, slept more, and had better sleep quality.
Kiwi fruit contains many sleep-promoting compounds, including:
4. Chamomile Tea
The herb chamomile is a traditional remedy for insomnia. A flavonoid compound called apigenin is responsible for chamomile’s sleep-inducing properties.
Apigenin seems to activate GABA A receptors, a process that helps stimulate sleep.
Having a warm cup of tea can be a soothing ritual to help a person mentally prepare for bed.
Walnuts contain a few compounds that promote and regulate sleep, including melatonin, serotonin, and magnesium. Walnuts can also be eaten as a healthy snack before bedtime or for late-night munching. Each 100gm serving of walnuts also contains other nutrients that can help sleep, such as:
• 158 mg of magnesium
• 441 mg of potassium
• 98 micrograms (µg) of folate
• 98 mg of calcium
6. Tart Cherries and Tart Cherry Juice
Tart cherries have a distinct flavour from sweet cherries. Sometimes called sour cherries.
Several studies have found sleep benefits for people who drink tart cherry juice. In one study, people who drank two one-cup servings of tart cherry juice per day were found to have more total sleep time and higher sleep efficiency.
These benefits may come from the fact that tart cherries have been found to have above-average concentrations of melatonin, which is a hormone that helps regulate circadian rhythm and promote healthy sleep.
The anti-inflammatory properties of cherries might help reduce pain after strenuous exercise and improve cognitive function. Tart cherries also make a good an. ack before bed because they are rich in fiber, vitamin C, and vitamin E.
Bananas are packed with potassium and magnesium that are serve as muscle and nerve relaxants. It also contain the amino acid L-tryptophan, which are natural sedatives.
The vitamin B6 found in the fruit also converts tryptophan into 5-HTP in the brain. The 5-HTP is converted to serotonin, which is a relaxing neurotransmitter.
When it’s getting close to bedtime, make sure you’re steering clear of heavy fried foods, alcohol, caffeine (like coffee, tea, and energy drinks), and heartburn-inducers such as tomato sauce or orange juice. These can have the exact opposite effect and keep you tossing and turning for longer.
Now, this does not mean engorging these foods will guarantee you more sleep. Actually, eating too much of any kind of food will hurt your chances of getting a good night’s rest. However, with moderation and a healthy lifestyle, eating these foods can help you get the hours of sleep you’ve been craving.
Dietary choices affect more than just energy and sleepiness; they can play a major role in things like weight, cardiovascular health, and blood sugar levels just to name a few.
For that reason, it’s best to consult with a dietician before making significant changes to your daily diet. Doing so helps ensure that your food choices support not just your sleep but all of your other health priorities as well.