- Drink herbal teas to induce better sleep
- Fatty fish can help in improving sleep
- Kiwi is also a sleep-inducing fruit
Weight loss tips: Having a good diet not only favours your nutrition, it also helps to sleep well. What you eat effects your sleep. Many people find it difficult to sleep at night. One of the important reasons people wake up at mid-night is the blood sugar crash. Most of us snack on cookies, brownies at evening which results in blood sugar crash at midnight and wakes you up. Getting good sleep is very important for your overall health as it reduces the risk of certain chronic diseases and boost immunity. You might be on the least calorie diet however if you are sleep deprived, it can lead to weight gain leaving you puzzled and grumpy.
It's generally advised to get between 7 to 9 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night, though many people struggle to get enough. A lack of sleep in the long term can cause changes in the hormones that regulate appetite and hunger. There are two important hormones - Ghrelin that triggers the feeling of hunger and Leptin which supresses hunger and signals the brain to stop eating once full. Sleep deprivation reduces the level of leptin and ghrelin shoots up. This increases your hunger constantly and causes you to eat more than needed. It also fails to give you a signal when the stomach is full.
To induce sleep, avoiding caffeine or caffeinated drinks 5 hours before sleep time can be the first step you can take. There are mainly four vitamins and minerals which are found in foods and can promote better sleep: calcium, B6, tryptophan and magnesium. These nutrients help the body produce melatonin, the hormone that is responsible for regulating your circadian (sleep/wakeup pattern). The good news is there are certain foods and drinks which naturally have these nutrients that you can consume and get a peaceful, stress free sleep as a reward.
Here are the best 8 foods that you can eat in your daily routine or going before bed to enhance your sleep quality.
1. Almonds: are a great source of magnesium and has potential sleep-promoting effects.
2. Chamomile Tea: known for its content of antioxidants especially apigenin, it promotes sleepiness.
3. Milk or Yogurt: dairy products contain tryptophan, vitamin D and calcium thus can be a relaxing nightly ritual.
4.Tart cherries juice: are a great source of fibre, vitamin C, vitamin E, potassium, polyphenols, tryptophan making it great source of peaceful sleep.
5. Fatty fish: May help improve sleep because they are a great source of omega3 fatty acids, potassium, magnesium, folate and calcium.
6. Kiwi: Kiwi is a great fruit for inducing sleep as being rich in melatonin, flavonoids, potassium, folate and calcium.
7.Oatmeal: being the natural source of melatonin, oats are a perfect meal for having great sleep.
8.Bananas: bananas are nature's sedative, as they contain potassium, magnesium and tryptophan which are great for inducing sleep.
It is not just foods, there are many drinks contain essential nutrients that help aid with sleep. These are almond milk, peppermint tea, chamomile tea, passion fruit tea, valerian tea, etc. It is always advised to avoid consuming high caffeine, high fat, high salt or high water foods before going to bed. Thus, the bottom line is getting enough sleep is very important for your health and eating well can really help you reward with great sleep.
(Monisha Ashokan is a nutritionist at Nourish Me)
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