Foods that Help and Harm Sleep

Foods to include in your diet to help you get some rest are bananas. If you usually start your day with them, you might want to switch them to a nighttime snack instead. They contain high levels of magnesium which acts as a natural muscle relaxer. Try having a sliced banana with a tablespoon of almond butter or peanut butter before bed.

Speaking of almonds, they contain high levels of magnesium which regulates our blood sugar levels while we sleep, switching our body into the rest and digest cycle. You can also try tart cherries as they contain high concentrations of melatonin. Kiwis contain Vitamins C and E, potassium, folate, and high concentrations of serotonin. A study showed that people who ate two kiwis an hour before bed fell asleep faster, slept longer, and had better quality sleep. And lastly honey, which stimulates melatonin and shuts off a neuropeptide that makes us feel alert. 

Foods to avoid include strong or aged cheese. They make us feel alert due to high levels of tyramine. Tyramine causes the adrenal gland to release the fight or flight hormone. Avoid high protein foods right before bed like chicken or red meat as it takes your body longer to break them down. Especially avoid cured meats like bacon or pepperoni as they contain naturally high levels of tyramine. Spicy foods like chili peppers or hot sauce contain capsaicin. This chemical elevates core body temperature which interferes with thermoregulation and ultimately, sleep. And finally, alcohol. Even though alcohol can help you fall asleep faster, it just drops your sleep throughout the night. 

Comment below if you’ve been having trouble with your sleep.


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