There are plenty of healthy foods that help you stay awake when you need an energy boost. But what about when you have the opposite problem? If you toss and turn at night trying to fall asleep, don’t worry—there are solutions beyond counting sheep. Eat these foods before bedtime to help you hit the hay faster.
Cherries are a natural source of melatonin, which helps normalize your sleep-wake cycle. Luckily it’s summer, so this delicious fruit is still in season. When the fresh ones run out, you can always eat dried cherries.
The potassium and magnesium in bananas relax your muscles, while the tryptophan (yup, just like in your Thanksgiving turkey) becomes melatonin and serotonin to promote relaxation and tiredness. Peel one open about an hour before you want to go to sleep for maximum effectiveness.
EGGS, LEAN MEAT, OR DAIRY
These high-protein snacks are especially helpful if you experience heartburn or acid reflux, which tend to affect us most at night. Try a hardboiled egg, a couple of slices of turkey, or some cottage cheese.
Raw or in butter form, almonds pack a lot of protein and magnesium to help you relax before bed.
Turns out your mother was right: warm milk really does help put you to sleep. It has tryptophan, plus calcium to regulate melatonin production. Soy milk is an especially effective option.
Green tea is your best bet for falling asleep since it contains the stress-reducing amino acid theanine, but any brew will soothe and relax you enough to help you feel drowsy.
Ironically, this breakfast food contains a lot of sleep-promoting nutrients like calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium. Skip the sweet toppings if you want to get a good night’s sleep.
FISH OR CHICKPEAS
Fish (like salmon, tuna, and halibut) and chickpeas contain vitamin B6, an essential component of melatonin production.
Do you have any foods not on this list that help you fall asleep? Share them with us here!
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