4 Best Foods to help you sleep better
I was in my teens when I used to face sleep issues. No matter how much I tried, nothing worked and it took a toll on my health--- I suffered from a lot of digestive problems, dull skin and hair fall.
I am sure even you must have faced this at some point in your life. You had an argument with someone and it was on your mind the whole day and even at night. Like your mind was in the third gear and was unable to get back to neutral. Overactive mind will not let you sleep.
When you sleep, its not just your body that should get some rest, but also your mind should slow down. Lack of sleep is associated with a lot of health issues- from digestive problems, skin issues to weight gain, and so on.
It is generally recommended to get at least 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night to accelerate the healing process, but there are a lot of people who struggle to get enough.
There are a lot of foods, drinks and few strategies that you can use to promote good sleep
Here are few foods that you can have before bedtime to enhance the quality of your sleep.
Walnuts have significant amount of magnesium, phosphorus, copper and manganese. Some researchers say that walnuts improves sleep quality as they are one of the richest source of melatonin, a sleep hormone.
Walnuts are also a good source of healthy fats like omega 3 fatty acids and linoleic acid. The fatty acid profile of walnuts may contribute to better sleep. They contain alpha- linolenic acid (ALA) which is an omega-3 fatty acid that is converted to DHA in your body. DHA can increase the production of serotonin, which is a feel good hormone and which can regulate your sleep-cycle.
There isn't much evidence to support this claim, but regardless of that you can still consume handful of walnuts daily to promote sleep.
A glass of organic milk, cottage cheese (paneer), and plain yogurt are sources of tryptophan which is converted to serotonin and then melatonin in our body.
So 1 cup o milk with a pinch of nutmeg powder can help you sleep well.
Chamomile tea may offer a lot of health benefits and its a popular herbal tea used to promote sleep. It contains an antioxidant known as apigenin, which binds to certain receptors in brain that may reduce insomnia and may promote sleepiness.
There is some evidence that suggest that drinking chamomile tea may reduce anxiety, depression, and improve skin health. So, drinking a cup of chamomile tea before going to bed is worth trying if you want to improve the quality of your sleep.
Studies about carbohydrates and sleep had shown mixed results but some evidence links rice consumption to improved sleep.Some research suggest that eating high glycemic index food 4 hours before bedtime helped with falling asleep.
The impact of carbohydrates on sleep is affected by the combinations you have along with it. Like for example, consuming rice with moderate amount of protein that contains tryptophan, which is a sleep-promoting amino acid and when consumed with a carbohydrate may make it easier for the tryptophan to reach the brain. Examples of tryptophan containing protein rich sources are beans, split peas, peanuts and lentils.
What we need to avoid:
Limit caffeine intake 6 hour before bedtime. It can keep you awake at night.
Limit alcohol consumption as it throws off your sleep-cycle even if it makes you feel sleepy at first.
Have a light dinner and make sure do not eat too late so that you aren't still digesting. especially be careful with fatty, oily and spicy food.
Sleep hygiene is nothing but your sleep environment and daily routines plays a very important role in your ability to sleep well.
Though some foods may help you sleep well but if you have a poor sleep hygiene then they are going to be less effective. Like if you use a lot of electronic gadgets that emits blue light, or if your your room has bright lights or if its noisy, it may decrease the production of melatonin and make those sleep promoting foods less effective.
Evaluating your current sleep hygiene and making necessary changes can go a long way in helping you sleep better