Thursday, March 8, 2018

Healthy Snacks: Best Foods for Better Sleep

“You are what you eat.”

We’ve all heard that before. It’s a line that almost every wellness coach or fitness trainer will feed you.

Well guess what? Here’s a new one for you: “You sleep how you eat.”

What does that mean, exactly? It means if you eat like crap, you’ll sleep like crap too. Fairly simple and direct, don’t you think?

So what do you eat if you want to have better sleep, anyway? We’re glad you asked. We had a whole list of healthy foods we put together that we were going to share with you, and we were afraid you’d be bored of the topic.

But no! You’re still here, reading these words, hanging on the edge of our seat, waiting to find out what types of nutritious foods you can add to your diet in order to to a good night's sleep like an actual human being might.

Well take a load off already! Sit back, relax, and listen to our suggestions on what to eat to sleep like a baby (and we don’t mean the newborn kind that wakes up every two hours).


This fuzzy emerald jewel of nature helps you get a boarding pass on the sleep train. A recent study suggests that eating kiwi fruit every day lead to high quality and high quantity sessions of shut-eye.

Researchers at Taiwan’s Taipei Medical University took 22 women and 2 men between the ages of 20-55 who had all reported having issues getting proper sleep.Each participant in the study were instructed to eat two kiwi fruit exactly one hour before their usual bedtime for four weeks.

After looking over the data that was collected during this time period, the researchers made a startling discovery. (Okay, so it’s not that startling whatsoever, but we’ve always wanted to say that!)

It turns out the volunteer kiwi-eaters were falling asleep faster, sleeping more soundly, more efficiently, and more deeply than they were before. In fact, their sleep disruptions had either slowed down or stopped completely - and it was all thanks to the mighty slumber inducing powers of the kiwifruit.

Bow down to it, because we are so not worthy.


This leafy green vegetable isn’t just for cartoon sailors who are curiously absent from our modern day pop culture landscape; it’s also for those of us who want to boost our ability to count sheep on a regular basis.

Spinach contains plenty of calcium which is great for your bones (obviously) and for your capacity to pass out at night. Why? It helps your body - rather, your pineal gland - produce more melatonin.

Sound familiar? It should. It’s one of the most popular natural over-the-counter sleep enhancers on the market. So the more spinach you eat, the more of this naturally occurring substance that will generate naturally.

Same goes for other leafy greens as well! Kale, chard, turnip greens, collard greens...*yawn*. Pardon us, we’re getting sleepy.

Milk and Cereal

“Breakfast before bed? Are you crazy?”

Um, no. Haven’t you ever heard of a Bed and Breakfast before?

Just kidding. That wasn’t our best pun, but that’s not the point here. What we’re trying to tell you is, eating a nice bowl of cereal before you snooze will actually help you get to sleep faster and stay that way longer throughout the night.

Milk is a source of tryptophan which helps your body manufacture serotonin, a hormone which is responsible for calming you down before you crawl under the sheets.

When paired with a sugar free, multi-grain cereal that has a decent amount of carbs, the milk’s tryptophan will be quickly absorbed into your body.

The end result? A happier, groggier you that’s ready to brush their teeth and hit some serious hay.

(Bonus tip: add a few slices of banana for an extra boost of tryptophan.)


Ahoy, mateys. Fish is a lean, healthy source of protein, it’s true. But did you know that most kinds of fish have considerable amounts of Omega 3 acids, which some experts say play a role in your regular sleep patterns.

They also contain the amino acid tryptophan, which we know produces serotonin which is great for relaxation - as we just mentioned above, did we not?

Walnuts, Almonds, and Cherries, Oh My!

Walnuts are also a good source of tryptophan. A single serving of walnuts contains 318 mg of this beneficial amino acid. Almonds, on the other hand, contain magnesium, which is also a well-documented sleep aid. So, scarf down a handful of walnuts and almonds along with that bowl of cereal we mentioned at least two hours before bed and see where the night takes you.

Cherries, especially the tart ones, are terrific sources of melatonin. Just like the kiwis we talked about at the beginning of this article, they were also part of a clinical research study in which participants were given tart Montmorency cherry juice concentrate for a week. At the end of this study, all volunteers had higher levels of melatonin present in their bodie. They also spent more time in bed. (Go figure.)

Well, that’s our list for today. We hope these snack foods help guide you towards the sleep of your dreams. Get it? See, that was a better pun...wasn’t it? Kind of? Hey, we’re really trying here!

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