Foods to Help You Sleep
Learn what foods will help you sleep

Foods to Help You Sleep

Woman sleeping
Sleep for health

Sleep 7 –9 hours a night is the recommendation to not just function, but to thrive in your life. You probably already know those nights that you barely get any sleep because:

#1: you couldn’t shut your mind

#2: had the list of to-dos running through it

#3: had to get work done

#4: your kids kept you up

So, you could hardly focus on anything. Because SLEEP – just didn’t happen!

 

A Harvard study claimed, “lack of adequate sleep can affect judgment, mood, ability to learn and retain information, and may increase the risk of serious accidents and injury.” The report also mentioned that sleep deprivation could lead to health problems and even early mortality. Wow! We need some sleep, like NOW!

If you’ve been wishing for just ONE night of sleep? What if you could have plenty of those nights? Wouldn’t that just be AMAZING?

Sleep has a huge impact on your hormones.

The vital sleep hormones are cortisol and melatonin

Sleep is a 24-hour cycle, not just something that happens when you go to bed. In the morning, your body makes cortisol to wake you up. In the evening it makes melatonin to make you sleepy. Hormonal factors that influence sleep can include making too much cortisol, making cortisol at the wrong times of day, and not making enough melatonin.

Serotonin also influences sleep

A healthy sleep cycle includes anchoring both cortisol and melatonin, so that you are awake and alert when you should be, and tired when you should be.

Sleep is when we repair cells – the heart of the immune system.

Reducing cortisol during the day and evening with diet, stress management and essential oils

Set a bedtime routine, including using essential oils to support the production of serotonin. Your wish may be answered right here! Adding blends of oils including roman chamomile, lavender and ylang ylang is a beautiful way to support a restful night sleep.

Try adding the following foods to your diet, especially if you find yourself tossing and turning at night, counting sheep to get a little shut eye.

Chamomile

Chamomile is commonly known as a mild tranquilizer or sleep inducer. It has calming effects that may decrease anxiety and initiate sleep.  Some chamomile tea can be a great idea before heading to bed to unwind, relax and de-stress. Roman chamomile essential oil in your diffuser or in the bath will help you de-stress and will also help with the production of serotonin.

Pistachios

Pistachios are not only tasty, but they are a jackpot for sleep. They are jampacked with magnesium, protein, and vitamin B6, which have a major role in inducing sleep. Consuming a healthy amount of pistachios before going to bed will knock you out like nothing else. You can eat them raw or add them to a glass of warm milk.  However, more than one ounce of pistachios will have a reverse effect on your body; eat in moderation to avoid exacerbating your sleep issues.

Kiwi

Kiwis contain serotonin, a brain chemical that helps regulate your sleep cycle. Many people actually take serotonin supplements to help with sleep, but wouldn’t you rather eat something that tastes delicious to get the same effect? Not only do kiwis contain serotonin, but they also may boost your sleep abilities due to their levels of vitamin C and carotenoids which reduce inflammation. When I feel that I may not be able to sleep at night, I eat 2 kiwi and they usually do the job.

Tart cherry juice

Tart cherry juice contains high levels of melatonin that regulate your internal clock and send signals for your body to get ready to sleep. Clients who drank tart cherry juice increased their sleep time by 90 minutes!

Bananas

This fruit is a powerhouse of magnesium and potassium, which serve as natural sleep aids for your body. If you are feeling wide awake late into the night, try a banana to get yourself to sleep. You can even whip yourself up a thick sugar-free banana smoothie before you go to bed. Bananas are high-glycaemic fruits, so try adding in some protein or good fat with your smoothie so sugar levels don’t skyrocket into the night. Some of my favourites are coconut oil or almond butter, but you get to pick!

Walnuts

Walnuts contain tryptophan, which helps produce melatonin and serotonin in the body and improve the quality of our sleep by regulating the sleep cycles. Walnuts contain their own source of melatonin, which may help you fall asleep faster.

Pumpkin seeds

A cup of roasted pumpkin seeds contains around 649 mg of magnesium, which is nearly double the daily recommendation of the National Health Institute. Magnesium supports deep, restorative sleep by maintaining healthy levels of GABA (a neurotransmitter that promotes sleep). Magnesium deficiencies are associated with heightened stress and anxiety, which of course lead to less sleep, so these pumpkin seeds have many benefits.

If you’ve been searching for the magical solution to get more sleep, no need to keep searching. Try to avoid the over-the-counter sleep aid and add these foods to your bedtime routine to get your body on the right path to sound sleep!

If you would like to try my best essential oils for sleep, email me here and I will be happy to send you the blissful night sleep blend. trish@trishtuckermay.com

Yours in health and wellness,

Trish