While we all know that having dinner two hours prior to bed time is the best thing to do, what happens when you feel hungry just before bedtime?
Chances are you will have problem going to sleep or you may get up in the middle of the night for a midnight snack. To avoid both the situations it is completely okay to have a sleep inducing snack about an hour before bedtime which will keep you full for the night as well as guarantee a good night’s sleep.
As per research, tryptophan is an amino acid which can create sedating effects making it easy to go to sleep. Other vitamin and minerals needed for you to be able to sleep better are Magnesium (to regulate sleep), Potassium (helpful for those who have disturbed sleep) and Vitamin D (a deficiency of which leads to excessive daytime sleepiness).
So let’s find out what food can be your best bedtime snack option –
Banana – Magnesium and Potassium in bananas help to relax the tired muscles and frayed nerves. Adding to it is the Vitamin B6 found in the fruit which converts tryptophan into serotonin, increasing the levels of relaxation so just one banana before bedtime is a good option.
Almonds – Grab a handful of almonds and munch on them before bedtime. Apart from the tryptophan and magnesium in these which help to naturally reduce muscle and nerve function they also steady your heart rhythm.
Honey – One tablespoon of honey contains glucose, which tells your brain to shut off orexin — the chemical known to trigger alertness.
Milk – So your mom was right about having a glass of warm milk before bedtime. Not only is it a source of tryptophan, an amino acid which your body converts to melatonin and serotonin which acts as a natural sedative, warm milk makes you comfortable too.
Cheese – Calcium is also known to release serotonin, however remember not to overdo it and have it at least two hours before going to bed so as to avoid indigestion.
Cherries – Cherries provide a great natural source of melatonin so consuming tart cherries just before bed helps in faster sleep.
Flaxseeds – Flaxseeds have high levels of both tryptophan and omega-3 fatty acids which are great for increasing the levels of serotonin in the body.
Turkey – Turkey has tryptophan in it, which gets metabolized into serotonin and melatonin, two of the main chemicals responsible for your dozing off.
Herbal Teas – Herbal teas have tons of snooze promoting properties. Chamomile, passion flower, lemon, lavender and valerian teas have a sedating effect. A teaspoon of honey adds an extra dose of calm.
Some good bedtime snack options –
· Have whole-grain crackers with peanut butter.
· Eat a small bowl of whole-grain cereal like oatmeal with milk
· Make a whole-wheat bread with a couple of slices of turkey
· Munch on Hummus which is another source of tryptophan.
· And last but not the least, a glass of warm milk with a teaspoon of honey.