A comfy bed and luxurious bedlinen go a long way to helping you get a good night’s sleep. But if you’re tucking into late-night no-nos such as caffeine or sugary snacks, you may disrupt your body clock and find you’re in no mood to Zzzzz…
If that’s the case, try these sleep-promoting foods before bed instead.
Milk contains tryptophan which helps the body produce serotonin, the ‘happiness hormone’ that affects our mood. Some believe our psychological association with warm milk and infancy is more likely to get us snoozing than this important amino acid or the vitamins and minerals it contains.
Oats are a complex carbohydrate just like bread. Packed with goodness, oats raise blood sugar levels and trigger the body’s production of insulin to bring them back down. Along with insulin comes a release of sleep-inducing chemicals that may help you get more zzz’s.
Bananas may be one of the best fruits for helping you drift off to sleep. Rich in potassium and magnesium, bananas also release natural chemicals which relax your body and help regulate your mood and internal clock.
A slice of toast may be the perfect night-time snack. Rich in carbohydrates, toast, or any other carb, can boost the amount of serotonin the brain receives. This feel-good chemical is then converted to the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin at night.
Yoghurt contains tryptophan which helps promote sleep. It also contains healthy doses of calcium which can be effective in stress reduction and the stabilisation of nerve fibres in the brain. It may not have the same nurturing associations as milk, but it will still help to stop your brain buzzing after a hectic day at work.
One of our favourite bed time rituals here at tielle is a sleep smoothie. Combining most of the ingredients mentioned above, it's the perfect bed time treat. Here's how to make it at home:
¼ cup of old-fashioned rolled oats
½ cup plain yoghurt
1 banana, cut into thirds
½ cup milk
2 tsp agave or honey
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
Combine the oats, yoghurt, banana, fat-free milk, honey and cinnamon in a blender and serve. A similar recipe can be seen at marthastewart.com