My last blog was about how – and why – certain foods and drinks can keep us from sleeping well. As in – maybe it was something you ate.
Well, maybe it was something you didn’t eat!
Because while what we eat and drink can certainly zap that sleepy feeling, other things can help bring it on and help us get that often elusive good night’s sleep.
So here are the top bedtime treats that can help you get to sleep faster (without popping any pills!)
- Cherries: This delicious fruit contains naturally high levels of melatonin, the sleep-regulating hormone that is the key to a good night’s sleep. If fresh cherries are out of season, dried tart versions and cherry juice appear to be just as effective.
- Bananas: High in magnesium and potassium, bananas might well be the perfect snack before bedtime. Magnesium is thought to be key in maintaining normal sleep patterns, with even a small deficiency contributing to insomnia.
- Almonds: Another treat that contains magnesium as well as supplying protein, almonds can helps put you in the right “mood” for sleep. Try some warm almond milk as a bedtime beverage.
- Walnuts: These nuts not only contain melatonin, but also tryptophan, the amino acid found in turkey that is credited for the after-Thanksgiving dinner couch nap syndrome. Tryptophan converts to serotonin, and then melatonin, the magic sleep hormone.
- Herbal tea and honey: Chamomile tea has been long known to be a sleep-enhancer. Studies have shown that the herb increases glycine, which can act as a mild sedative. Another variety of tea made from passion fruit was found in an Australian study to improve sleep, most likely due to high levels of alkaloids found in the flower. And what goes better in tea than honey? Aside from adding sweetness, honey can also help you metabolize tryptophan more easily.
Getting a good night’s sleep, of course, is essential to your feeling of well-being and proficiency at handling whatever responsibilities await you upon awakening. And very often, eating or drinking just the right thing before turning in is what can make all the difference in your ability to turn in a top performance the next day!