Quality sleep is one of the key pillars of good health but is often ignored by people. After a sleepless and restless night, you may feel lethargic the next day. There are numerous strategies that can be incorporated to help you sleep better and one is modifying your diet. Some foods are known to have sleep-promoting properties.

Check out the list of foods that can help you get a good night’s sleep, whether you are having difficulty falling asleep or you just want to wake up feeling more refreshed in the morning.

5 Foods to Help You Sleep Better

1. Add a Banana to Your Diet.

Bananas are rich in potassium and vitamin B6. They help the body to make melatonin (a sleep-inducing hormone triggered by darkness). 

Unless you are diabetic, you may add one banana to your evening snack to improve your sleep quality.

2. Include Nuts As Bedtime Snacks.

Nuts such as almonds and walnuts are great bedtime snacks as they are packed with magnesium and tryptophan, which boost serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin is the key hormone that stabilizes your mood and enhances your sleep quality. 

These nuts are also a great source of melatonin, a hormone that regulates your internal clock and signals the body to prepare for sleep. Hence, keep a small bowl of these nuts in your snack jar.

3. Eat One Cup of Dahi Everyday. 

Sometimes poor sleep is an outcome of calcium deficiency, especially in women and senior citizens. Calcium is needed for processing the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin. 

Hence, adding a cup of dahi (curd) to your daily diet will not only boost your gut immunity, but also improve your sleep quality.

4. Dig Into Dark Leafy Vegetables. 

Dark leafy vegetables like spinach, broccoli and kale (in case you do not find kale with your regular vegetable vendor, you can order it online), contain a high dose of Vitamin B that helps treat insomnia.

So, add a variety of dark leafy greens to your diet.

5. Sip on Chamomile Tea.

Chamomile tea is a popular herbal beverage that has been shown to have numerous health benefits. The flavonoids found in chamomile have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-cancer properties that have been found to be effective in the management of various chronic diseases such as diabetes and cancer. 

Apigenin, a chemical found in chamomile tea, has been shown to enhance sleep and lessen insomnia by activating GABA A receptors in the brain. Having a warm cup of chamomile tea can be a soothing ritual to help a person mentally prepare for bed.

The Bottom line

Getting enough sleep (7 to 9 hours) is very important for your overall health. Some foods and drinks as mentioned above (banana, curds, nuts, leafy vegetables, and herbal drinks) are all known to enhance your sleep quality by helping you fall asleep faster or stay asleep for longer.

To reap the maximum benefit of these foods, it is best to consume them 2 to 3 hours before bedtime. Eating right before going to sleep may cause digestive issues, such as acid reflux.

Disclaimer: This article is written by the Practitioner for informational and educational purposes only. The content presented on this page should not be considered as a substitute for medical expertise. Please "DO NOT SELF-MEDICATE" and seek professional help regarding any health conditions or concerns. Practo will not be responsible for any act or omission arising from the interpretation of the content present on this page.