Getting the right amount of sleep can be difficult. You may struggle to “shut down” at night or maybe you doze off at first but struggle to stay asleep. Whatever the reason, the struggle is real, and it can affect the rest of your day.
When you don’t get adequate rest it can affect your motivation, appearance and overall health. That’s why it’s essential to catch your z’s. However, a steady diet of sleeping pills doesn’t necessarily sound healthy or appetizing. The good news is there are plenty of foods to help you snooze.
Nuts are beneficial to your sleep because they are rich in calcium, magnesium and protein. The calcium and magnesium both promote healthy sleep. While, the protein helps keep your blood sugar stable. Nuts have also been said to help improve serotonin levels (which promotes sleep and improves mood).
Cherries contain melatonin, especially the tart varieties. Melatonin is a sleep hormone. It helps keep your internal clock in check. However, your body’s natural source is sometimes thrown off by things like jet lag and shift work. It can be beneficial to increase your melatonin levels if you’re struggling to get the rest you need.
This “breakfast” food is actually beneficial for a good night’s rest. So you may want to save your morning fruit for an evening treat. It’s a good source of potassium and magnesium. These are both great minerals for relaxing muscles. Bananas also contain tryptophan (the same amino acid found in turkey that causes sleepiness).
Milk isn’t the only dairy item that can help you rest easy. Dairy in general can be beneficial because it has calcium, which is melatonin-boosting.
Fish is another source for tryptophan. In addition, fish such as cod, salmon, snapper, halibut, trout and tuna contain vitamin B6 (used to make melatonin).
Oatmeal is a source of melatonin. It also contains magnesium. Plus, you can double up your “sleepiness” by adding milk. The two together may have the power to help you get the quality of sleep you need. If you are really desperate for sleep you can add a few slices of banana to top you off. Just be careful with how much sugar you consume, excessive sugar can have a counterproductive effect.
Many of us today go through life exhausted and relying on coffee to keep going. However, living like a zombie isn’t living. It’s essential to get the rest you need in order to look and feel your best.
Want to know how many hours you should be sleeping? Check out WebMD’s article “How sleep changes with age, once you’re an adult.” You can also use Sleepytime’s bedtime calculator to ensure you don’t wake up during a sleep cycle.