Sleep plays a huge role in good health — it’s vital for healthy brain function and mental well-being, as well as overall physical maintenance. We all need it. But sometimes getting quality sleep or even just getting enough sleep can be tough, especially in the on-the-go, technology-driven pace of today. But when combined with an active lifestyle, there are certain foods that can combat this issue and help you get the quality sleep your body needs. Here are five foods to help you sleep better.
Certain fish, like salmon and tuna, are high in vitamin B6. This vitamin is needed for the body to make melatonin, the sleep-hormone. Providing your body with ample amounts of B6 will encourage it to make the melatonin it needs to help you sleep.
Calcium is the key here. Research has shown that deficiencies in this mineral may make it more difficult to fall asleep. Reach for some yogurt or other calcium-rich foods like Orgain Grass Fed Protein Shakes for a healthy dose.
Insulin, one of the body’s glucose regulating hormones, allows for higher levels of tryptophan to enter the brain. You may have heard of tryptophan around Thanksgiving time because it’s the stuff in turkey that is believed to make you sleepy. Tryptophan has been shown to induce sleepiness since it is needed to make serotonin and melatonin, the sleep-inducing hormones. By eating honey, insulin levels will rise and so will tryptophan levels in the brain. Honey is also a great alternative to artificial sweeteners and processed sugars because it encourages a healthy rise in insulin levels versus a spike.
Almonds are a nutrition all-star. They are an excellent source of unsaturated fatty acids as well as quality protein. But when it comes to sleep, almonds contain magnesium which is a muscle relaxant. A handful of almonds or a glass of Orgain Almond Milk is a great snack that will keep you feeling satisfied and relaxed––just what you need for a good night’s sleep.
Bananas pretty much have it all when it comes to aiding in sleep. Like almonds and honey, they contain tryptophan as well as the muscle relaxants potassium and magnesium. To top it off, bananas contain B vitamins needed to make that sleep hormone melatonin. So get peeling! Try this delicious and low sugar Chunky Monkey Banana Ice Cream for a perfect banana-filled dessert before bed.