Finding it difficult to sleep at night but not wanting to take medication. A good night's sleep can be supported with the right foods, and we've compiled a list for you.
Be sure to keep a sleep diary along the way to keep track of which foods are working for you and which aren't. It is also critical to give them a chance for at least a week to see if they make a difference. Trying to do it after one day is unlikely to give you your desired results. Good luck.
Oats - Oats contain melatonin, which relaxes the body and helps you fall asleep easier. Several suppliers sell oats as "sleepytime oats", but all oats are the same. It is possible that they have included some magnesium, but you should check that out on the label.
Edamame Beans - Edamame beans are another food that increases your serotonin production. In numerous sleep studies, it has been claimed that consuming edamame beans regularly improved sleep in patients suffering from insomnia. Salting them with a high magnesium salt is a great way to serve them.
Grapes - Like oats, grapes contain melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep, wake cycles and relaxes the body. Their sweetness makes them a welcome fruit (but sadly wine doesn't count I'm afraid - alcohol impacts sleep negatively and should be avoided).
Almonds - Almonds contain magnesium, a nutrient that we all need more of, especially since it promotes good sleep. According to studies, one out of three of us has magnesium deficiencies, so try adding a few almonds to your diet.
Cherries - Like many other foods on this list, cherries help the body understand sleep times and relax the body to prepare for a longer, more effective sleep. Drinking a glass of natural cherry juice is a delicious way to get the goodness of cherries without having to deal with cherry pips.
Sesame Seeds - Although sesame seeds may be small, they contain a lot of goodness, not just for sleep, but for mood aswell. There's no doubt that they come packed with nutrients. They contain calming vitamins like Thiamin and Tryptophan. A sprinkle on your evening meal is a popular way to add them into your diet.
Walnuts - Walnuts contain Tryptophan, an amino acid that helps our bodies produce sleep-boosting hormones serotonin and melatonin.
Bananas - Bananas also contain Tryptophan like Walnuts but they also have potassium. This is beneficial to the body because it can act as a muscle relaxant. Stress and anxiety often keep us awake at night, so this is said to help reduce them. They also have magnesium. A banana is such an easy dessert to add to any meal, just make sure you leave a bit of time for digestion after your main meal before going to bed.
Garlic - It's been said that putting garlic cloves under your pillow can help to calm your nervous system. For some, it might actually work, despite being a pretty smelly food. We are certain, however, that it contains a high concentration of allicin, which is believed to relax the mind. Adding it to dinner is so easy.
Chamomile tea - Chamomile tea stimulates the release of glycine, a chemical in the body that relaxes muscles and nerves and acts as a mild sedative. Our recommendation is to use a triangle tea bag so the leaves have more room for stirring or loose tea would be even better.