Studies have shown that around one out of every three people not only has trouble falling and staying asleep, but it happens to them on a daily basis. Sleep is one of the most important things that your body needs besides water, and you’ve likely heard about all of the great benefits that a good night’s sleep provides.
If you’re one of the millions who struggle to fall asleep every night and feel that there’s no escape, it could be from your diet. With processed foods and caffeinated drinks dominating our lives, it’s no surprise that many of us struggle. Instead, you should be focusing on certain types of foods that can help you get a better night’s sleep, with these five being among the best.
Bananas provide tons of health benefits. They’re chock full of potassium, fiber, prebiotics, and natural sugars. When you’re feeling restless, bananas make for a quick and easy midnight snack. A banana on its own, or paired with other healthy snacks like peanut butter, helps to regulate your blood sugar and healthily fulfill nighttime cravings.
Potassium plays a huge part in why bananas help with sleep. A healthy amount of potassium acts as a muscle relaxant, naturally easing your body to sleep. If nighttime cramps keep you from sleep, the potassium in bananas will do the trick and stop it in its tracks.
You’ve heard how a glass of milk promotes better sleep, but did you know that dairy products, in general, all promote healthy sleep? Yogurt is one of them. Our brains process the tryptophan found in the calcium within the yogurt, increasing our naturally occurring melatonin production, and resulting in a magnificent night of sleep.
If hunger pangs are keeping you up, try pairing the yogurt with something substantial like nuts, a banana, or granola. Greek yogurt contains far more protein than other yogurt, keeping you full and satisfied through the night.
Cherries, specifically tart cherries, contain a decent amount of melatonin as well as increasing melatonin production already found within our bodies. Of all the cherry varieties, Montmorency cherries are proven to be the most inducing, packing more melatonin per cherry than the others.
If you don’t want to gobble down loads of tart cherries right before bed, it’s recommended you drink tart cherry juice instead. It’s a much more concentrated and easier way to get down the equivalent of cherries you’d need to make a difference, which is about 25.
Salmon is the super food of super foods. It’s chock full of so many incredible health benefits. Supposedly, eating this fatty fish is linked to better sleep. Eating salmon at least three times a week has been proven to improve overall sleep quality.
Why is that? Salmon contains omega-3 fatty acids, one of which is called docosahexaenoic acid. This increases the production of melatonin inside of us, allowing us to drift off to sleep far more easily.
You may have thought it was just a myth or the sleepiness you get after Thanksgiving dinner was due to how stuffed you are and not the turkey you ate. Let’s be real, it was probably both. Ending the night in a food coma is a Thanksgiving tradition.
However, turkey does play a big part in why we feel so sleepy after those delicious roast Turkey dinners. Turkey contains an amino acid called tryptophan, which is not organically produced within the body. So, getting it from other places, such as our diet, is beneficial. You don’t have to gobble down an entire turkey to get a good night of rest, but if you incorporate it into your evening meal, you may see the difference a full belly of tryptophan makes before bed.