Eating Your Way to a Good Night’s Sleep

Posted by on Mar 30, 2015 in Healthy Living | 0 comments

1277560_99475835There are the ingredients in foods and beverages that we all know can be a barrier to a good night’s sleep—caffeine, sugar and alcohol are three of the biggest—but there are also ingredients in food that can be effective aids to satisfying and restorative sleep.

  • Fish, Bananas, Legumes: Melatonin, a sleep inducing hormone that kicks in at night can use a a boost of Vitamin B6 found in these foods.
  • High-glycemic-index (GI) triggers insulin which can increase the ratio of sleep-inducing tryptophan relative to other amino acids in the blood, allowing more tryptophan to get into the brain
  • Pay attention to calcium levels, a deficiency can prevent good sleep (think dairy products like kefir, yogurt, cottage cheese or deep green vegetables like kale and collards; even better combine them in one dish)
  • Make fiber and magnesium-rich diets a priority if you want to stay asleep once you’ve fallen asleep (think whole grains, like freekeh)
  • Regulate your circadian rhythm with Vitamin D to allow for appropriate mineral intake (think sunshine, as well as foods)
  • Antioxidants derived from vibrant colored fruits and vegetables (think strawberries, tomatoes, cabbage)
  • Give your cells a helping hand (think of potassium-packed foods like spinach)
  • Take Vitamins A, B, C & D and repeat daily (think fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds)

Learn more about the properties of food and how they affect are linked to good sleep: “Don’t Snooze on Nutrition: See How Foods Affect Sleep” by Firas Kittaneh

Learn more about the effect poor sleep has on weight gain: “Experts say that being sleep deprived leads to weight gain, other disorders

Learn more about the relationship of sleep to other health issues: “Sleep and Disease Risk

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