Let us state the obvious: sleep is incredibly important for your physical and mental wellbeing. While many people occasionally suffer from a restless night sleep, for those that are plagued by insomnia, constant lack of sleep can take a dangerous toll on their health.
Despite following all of the standard tips to help you sleep better, it’s possible you’ve forgotten to monitor what you ate before going to bed. The fantastic news is that getting a better sleep may be as simple as making a few dietary changes and avoiding certain items that may be causing you to toss and turn during the night.
Knowing which chemical compounds in foods promote and prevent sleep will help you be more mindful of what you eat for dinner and any following snacks.
Here's a list of the best and worst foods to help you get started:
Tryptophan is a compound that produces serotonin, a chemical that influences your circadian rhythm and helps you sleep.
Foods rich in tryptophan include turkey, chicken, fish, many nuts & seeds, and soy products (tofu, soybeans). You can pair these foods with whole grains to help the body absorb the tryptophan faster.
Magnesium is a mineral that doesn’t directly affect sleep but rather reduces cortisol, the stress hormone, and relaxes the body to help you sleep.
Foods rich in magnesium include dark leafy greens, avocados, bananas, and almonds.
Melatonin is a compound your body produces naturally to help regulate your sleep and wake cycles.
Melatonin-rich foods include tart cherries, oats, bananas, pineapple, and tomatoes.
Foods high in unhealthy fats are harder for your body to digest, causing your body to work hard late into the night, detracting from your sleep quality.
Try to avoid deep fried foods, ice cream, and potato chips if you want to get a good night’s sleep.
Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant. Coffee is the most common vehicle for caffeine consumption. Most people with sleep problems should try to avoid caffeine after noon.
Beyond coffee and soda, try to avoid foods and drinks like black & green tea, dark chocolate, energy drinks, and protein bars.
Alcohol, a depressant, has been used for centuries as a nightcap, but few consider the effects on the body during the night.
Alcohol causes the body and mind to be restless, so it’s best to avoid it altogether in the evening.
A few diet modifications in addition to wearing your Philip Stein Sleep Bracelet each evening can help get you back on track and falling into a deep and restorative sleep. There is no better feeling than waking up refreshed and ready for the day ahead. Your wellbeing will thank you!