If you’re struggling to get a great night’s sleep, adding certain foods to your diet could help to turn that around.
Here are 14 foods proven to help you sleep better:
Drinking a glass of cherry juice before going to bed could help you to fall asleep faster, according to research from the Universities of Pennsylvania and Rochester. Just make sure it is from tart cherries as these contain melatonin, a hormone which helps you sleep.
Research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has shown that eating jasmine rice can help you to fall asleep easier as it has a high glycemic index which sees a gradual release of glucose into the bloodstream as well as boosting the production of tryptophan and serotonin in the blood, which encourage sleep.
Kale (just like other green leafy vegetables) is loaded with calcium, which, in turn, helps the brain to use tryptophan to manufacture melatonin and therefore helps to induce a sound sleep. It is thought that a calcium deficiency may make it difficult to fall asleep.
Despite being best known as being high in Potassium, Bananas are also a great source of Vitamin B6, one which is needed in the production of melatonin according to research published in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences.
Hummus is a strong source of tryptophan and turns to 5-HTP which releases relaxing serotonin, says Washington State University Alcohol & Drug Counseling, Assessment, & Prevention Services. Just a couple of tablespoons should help you to fall asleep.
There’s a reason why children drink a bottle of milk before going to bed; it’s been proven to help get a great night’s sleep! Milk contains both tryptophan and calcium, which helps to regulate melatonin production. Drink warm to further promote sleep as it’ll raise the body temperature and make you feel sleepy.
A side of lettuce with an evening meal may help to promote sleep, given that it contains contains lactucarium which boasts sedative-like properties which can affect the brain the same way opium does, according to Oregon State University’s Wellness Ink April 2014 issue.
A warm cup of tea has similar sleep-inducing properties to milk. According to researchers, drinking a cup of this herbal tea is associated with an increase of glycine, a chemical that relaxes nerves and muscles and acts like a mild sedative, therefore helping promote a better night’s sleep.
A study published in the Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine found outlined when the body’s magnesium levels are too low, it makes it harder to stay asleep. Given that almonds are high in magnesium, these can be a great food that is easily eaten as a snack for promoting sleep.
Whole Wheat Bread
The carbohydrates in a slice of whole wheat bread (or toast) can raise brain levels of tryptophan, which, in turn, can make you sleepy. White bread will also work but whole wheat is far more effective given that it doesn’t spike blood sugar levels the same.
Walnuts not only contain high levels of tryptophan but also their own form of melatonin. As such, like almonds, walnuts can make a great evening snack for those struggling to get the great night’s sleep they deserve.
Chocoholics will be over the moon to find that dark chocolate can actually help to promote a great night’s sleep. The serotonin in dark chocolate sends your body into relaxation mode and also serves as a little treat at the same time.
Believe it or not, over-indulgence isn’t the main reason why you’ll often find yourself nodding off after a turkey roast. The meat is high in tryptophan which can leave you feeling sleepy but can also help to promote a better night’s rest as well as encouraging you to take an afternoon nap.
Tuna contains sleep-inducing tryptophan and, according to an article first published in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, the fish is also high in vitamin B6, something which your body needs to produce both melatonin and serotonin.
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