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Five Common Foods that Can Help You Sleep Better

Dec 09, 2021

Primary Care

Five Common Foods that Can Help You Sleep Better
With many of us leading busy lifestyles, it can lead us to indulge in unhealthy habits such as overdependence on caffeine for a temporary spike in energy. However, such habits, combined with long hours spent staring at the screen, often result in disruptive sleeping patterns.Sleep deprivation is a common occurrence, especially among young people. However, several food items can help you sleep better. For example, food packed with Vitamin B12, B6, and folic acid can boost serotonin levels in your system and improve your quality of sleep. Low serotonin level in the body causes insomnia and depression.

Foods That Help You Sleep Better

Below is a list of foods that are easy to digest and promote sleep.
  1. Complex Carbohydrates: Including more whole-grain food in your diet and cutting down on simple carbs can help maintain a healthy level of serotonin. Add brown rice, cereal, whole-grain pasta to your diet and minimize consuming processed and sugary foods.
  2. Lean Proteins: Food rich in the essential amino acid known as tryptophan can aid the body in producing serotonin. Lean protein such as low-fat cheese, egg, salmon, and turkey are tryptophan-rich food. These proteins are not only great food to combat insomnia, but they are also easy to digest. Foods that are heavy on the stomach take longer to digest and can cause sleep disruption.
  3. Kiwi: It is a food rich in antioxidants, which promote a better sleep cycle. Even though further research is needed, preliminary studies indicate adults who had kiwi before bedtime fell asleep 42% more quickly than when they did not consume any.
  4. Malted Milk and Night-Time Milk: Melatonin, another sleep-producing hormone, is a natural constituent of milk. Often cows are intentionally milked at night when the melatonin content is high. Additionally, malted milk enriched by an assortment of vitamins is also considered to aid undisrupted sleep.The specific cause for this is still not clear. However, vitamin B and D present in milk can be a factor. Vitamins B6 and B12 are instrumental in producing serotonin and melatonin, which are necessary for sound sleep.
  5. Cherry Juice - Tart cherry juice is rich in the sleep-enriching hormone melatonin. Besides, there are studies to prove drinking cherry juice helps increase melatonin levels as well. As per the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Dietary Supplements, you can drink up to 16 ounces of cherry juice once per day for two weeks for a discernable impact.

Foods to Avoid Before Bed

As you might have figured out by now, diet and sleep are closely linked. Just like some foods help you sleep, several food items may contribute to insomnia. Avoid consuming coffee, tea, and dark chocolates that contain caffeine before bedtime. Foods rich in saturated fat such as cheese or red meat are difficult to digest and can make it difficult for you to fall asleep comfortably. Avoid consuming these foods a few hours before sleep to prevent any sleep disruptions.Not getting adequate sleep can lead to problems like high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and reduced immunity. Get medical help if you cannot get adequate sleep despite implementing the suggested diet changes.Schedule an appointment with us at MI Express Primary Care today if you are struggling with insomnia. Our healthcare providers can develop a customized treatment plan based on your medical condition and suggest appropriate lifestyle changes to improve your sleep pattern and ensure that you get adequate sleep.
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