How your diet can affect your sleep
A well-balanced diet is important for maintaining optimal health and reducing the risk of medical conditions like heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.
Many people don’t realize that our dietary choices can also impact our sleep, including how long we sleep, the quality of our sleep, and even the content of our dreams.
Tips for better sleep
- Eating too close to bedtime can increase the likelihood of disrupted sleep. To avoid having late-night meals interrupt your sleep, try eating dinner a few hours before bed and keep snacking to a minimum.
- Take calcium. This natural relaxant has a calming effect on the body’s nervous system. Find It In: Low-fat yogurt, milk, cheese, fortified orange juice.
- Fresh herbs. Fresh herbs can have a calming effect on the body. For example, sage and basil contain chemicals that reduce tension and promote sleep. Try making your own homemade pasta sauce with sage and basil. It’s easy to do, and homemade sauces tend to be lower in sugar than store-bought versions.
- Cherries are known for being one of the best foods for sleep as they naturally contain melatonin. Snacking on cherries or drinking cherry juice can help promote longer, deeper sleep.
- Bananas are a great food all-round, but if you usually eat a banana for breakfast, you might want to think about enjoying this exotic fruit before bed instead. They are one of the best foods for sleep, due to their high levels of magnesium which relax the muscles and calm the body. Try sliced banana with a tablespoon of natural nut butter before bed if you seek a good night’s sleep.
- Just like bananas, almonds are a food you need to eat for good sleep as they contain high amounts of muscle-relaxing magnesium. Magnesium is great for regulating our blood sugar as we sleep, which means the body naturally switches from its adrenaline cycle to what is known as the “rest and digest” cycle.
- Warm milk is a common home remedy for sleeplessness. Milk contains four sleep-promoting compounds: tryptophan, calcium, vitamin D, and melatonin.
- Fatty fish may help improve sleep because they are a good source of vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids, two nutrients that help regulate serotonin. Serotonin is largely responsible for establishing a fixed sleeping and waking cycle.