If you find yourself lying awake, and counting sheep, your late-night snack may be to blame. Don’t let your beauty sleep fall by the wayside because a good night’s rest is critical to stay alert, improve immunity, and nobody likes dark eye circles! Eating the right foods can boost the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin, and have you drifting off to dreamland in no time.
This portable fruit is packed with potassium, vitamin B6 for melatonin production, and is a low-calorie option for late night hunger. Choose ripe bananas as the starch has broken down making them much easier to digest.
Whole grains such as oats, brown rice, and barley contain magnesium to help relax muscles and lower cortisol. Some no sugar added grain cereals are a good choice for a bedtime snack if you feel hungry, and whole grains in general help regulate blood sugar levels throughout the night for a restful sleep.
Tart Cherry Juice
In a study by the European Journal of Nutrition, twenty participants were given tart cherry juice and a cherry like beverage. After a week, the group drinking the tart cherry showed higher levels of the sleep hormone melatonin and slept more soundly than the group drinking the cherry beverage. A promising elixir for insomniacs, tart cherry can be found in most health food stores, just look for 100% juice with no added sugars.
Dark Leafy Greens
Remember when warm milk was the answer? Super greens like kale, collards, or spinach are high in calcium to produce melatonin in the body. Calcium helps relax the body naturally and works along with magnesium to help induce sleep.
Rich in vitamin E, protein, and magnesium, a serving of almonds (about a 1/4 cup) is a great bedtime snack that provides a source of healthy fat, and helps promote sleep. Magnesium deficiency is a common issue, so getting your daily dose is essential for a healthy nervous system, and muscle function.