What Are The Best Foods To Help You Sleep at Night?
What food myths and old wives’ tales have you been told throughout your life? That cheese will give you nightmares? Or, that carrots will help you see in the dark? If you’ve believed these stories until now, it’s time to turn the tables on all these old myths! In fact, almost everything you think you know about foods helping you fall a sleep at night, is false. So, what foods really can help you get to sleep quickly and leave you feeling energised the next day? Perhaps these food groups aren’t what you expected, but they really can work wonders for your quality of sleep.
It may come as a surprise to you that a small portion of cheese is beneficial in helping prepare your body for sleeping at the end of a hectic day. Protein based foods that are rich in a special kind of amino acid called tryptophan are what your body needs. These amino acids boost the sleep-inducing hormone, melatonin, which is just what you want to enjoy a more peaceful night. A glass of milk or other dairy products are a great example, or white meat such as chicken and turkey will also do the job. If you want a lighter snack before bedtime, then you can also try grazing on nuts and seeds, so that you are still getting the protein you need before bedtime. So, far from giving you nightmares, a little cheese at the end of the day may in fact help you get a better night’s sleep after all.
Some of the myths may be wide of the mark, but others hit the bullseye. There is a lot to be said for a warm glass of milk at the end of the day, as it will help to make you sleepy. Admittedly, it’s not just milk, it’s any dairy product. If preparing a glass of warm milk for bed is going to make you feel old before your time, then hot chocolate is a great alternative - the sugar in it may not be ideal but a small spoonful won’t hurt, and the heated milk will still work it’s wonders.
Dairy is great for your body in more ways than one - it’s the calcium that’s really fantastic in this case though, as this also helps your brain use tryptophan that will in turn kickstart the sleep-inducing melatonin. Starting to sound too complex? Don’t worry, what this means in day-to-day life, is that a pot of yoghurt as a snack after dinner is a great idea. Why not enjoy some of your favourite dairy-based foods and allow your body to do the work for you? We all need a certain amount of sleep each day, so finding the right foods is simply an aid to falling asleep quickly and sleeping a little more deeply.
The wonder food may be dairy, but it could do with an extra kick from another food group as well. Carbohydrates such as rice, pasta or potatoes really get the best benefits from tryptophan and will compliment those dairy products as well. The perfect balance would be cheese and biscuits - calcium and carbohydrates combined! Midnight feats just began to look a little more exciting, so find the right combination of foods for you and enjoy a better night’s sleep. Something as simple as adjusting your diet towards the end of the day, can make a big difference to the quality of sleep you enjoy.