The Ultimate Sleep Better Diet
3 foods that will help you sleep better – and a few to avoid!
Everyone says the kitchen is the heartbeat of a happy home but if that’s true, the bedroom is a home’s soul. It’s the place where we greet our days and where we bid them goodnight. It’s where we curl up to canoodle and cuddle with our children and our pets.
And the first step to all that peaceful, soothing sleep-happy goodness will always be a full belly. But do some foods help you sleep better than others? You bet your pillow top mattress!
If you’ve been dreaming of a good night’s sleep, prepare yourself for a diet-sleep-fitness epiphany with these bedtime snacks.
Grandma knew what she was doing when she fed you warm milk before bed – calcium helps your brain produce sleep-enhancing melatonin. Bananas contain the sleep-inducing amino acid tryptophan, which encourages relaxation.
Cherries & dark chocolate
Cherries boost melatonin naturally. Sip a glass of cherry juice or scoop some into bowl to munch on before bed. Throw in some dark chocolate, which help you produce serotonin, making it an over-achieving sleep superstar. Stick to chocolate that’s at least 70% cacao and you’ll reap the rewards without the extra calories.
A warm drink before bed is comforting and soothing but coffee, most tea and hot chocolate all contain sleep-stealing caffeine. Chamomile lacks the caffeine and studies show it increases glycine, a chemical that relaxes nerves and muscles.
The ultimate sleep-horrible diet
If sleep isn’t important to you, belly up to the bar and these foods to your bedtime snack list.
● Coffee – This shouldn’t come as a surprise. Coffee contains caffeine, which will stay in your system for at least 4 hours.
● Bacon – If you love bacon, break out the fry pans and fire up the stove. Foods containing tyramine (bacon, cheese, ham, pepperoni, raspberries avocado, nuts, soy sauce, red wine) cause the release of norepinephrine, a brain stimulant.
● Wine, beer and all adult beverages – While alcohol is a sedative, your body metabolizes it at lightning speed, which can leave you dehydrated and tossing and turning throughout the night.
● Nicotine – Nicotine is a stimulant, which means it’s engineered to keep you wired and on the edge of your seat. Don’t trouble yourself about heart disease or the other health concerns associated with smoking – they won’t interfere with your not-gonna-sleep-anymore goals.
● Spicy anything – Spicy food can cause heartburn, a backflow of food particles and acid from the stomach into the esophagus. Load up on the nachos and wings and don’t skimp on the hot sauce. Feel the burn, baby.
● Steak – Fatty foods might raise your cholesterol and increase your risk for obesity but fatty foods high in protein, like steak, are delish sleep stealers too. They take a long time and a lot of effort to digest.
About the author
My name is Julia Rosien, I am the Brand Director for Restonic, When I’m not chatting about all things sleep, I serve on various boards of directors, including the Better Sleep Council, and am the past president and chair for Withit.org, a non-profit women’s leadership organization.