5 Foods to Help You Sleep Better

Inability to fall asleep or stay asleep can be as a result of various physical or psychological issues. While sleeping pills might be helpful in combating sleep disorders, they might not be the best options, because they can have side effects ranging from tingling sensations in the limbs to vertigo. Consumption of natural sleep-inducing foods is a much healthier choice, which can have many other added benefits. Here are some foods that should help you get that elusive night rest.

1. Oatmeal

Whole grains like oatmeal can help increase insulin production, which is triggered by increase in blood sugar levels. Fluctuations in blood sugar levels can help make you relaxed and sleepy. However, you should be careful to avoid taking in refined grains. Though they perform the same function, they don’t have as many nutrients and health benefits and as their unprocessed counterparts.

2. Chamomile or passion-fruit tea

Chamomile tea helps increase glycine levels, a neurotransmitter that acts as a muscle relaxant and a mild tranquilizer. Another way by which it induces sleep is by its apigenin content. Apigenin is a flavonoid that binds to benzodiazepine receptors and enhances the sedative effects of the neurotransmitter, GABA. Harmane alkaloids found in passion-fruit tea can also make you drowsy. A cup of tea just before bedtime can help you get to sleep quicker.

3. Fish

Fishes like salmon and mackerel contain a high amount of Vitamin B6, which is required for the production of serotonin. It also functions as a mild antidepressant. Deficiency of this vitamin has been linked to several sleep related disorders, such as insomnia. They are also high in proteins which can be broken down into amino acids like tryptophan which is used for production of the hormone, serotonin that puts you in a relaxing mood.

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4. Lettuce

Lettuce contains the compound, lactucarium which acts as a sedative and has similar effects to that of opioids on the brain. You can add a salad to your dinner to help you sleep faster and better.

5. Dairy products

Foods like milk and cheese are high in Calcium, that plays an important role in the production of Melatonin. Melatonin is a hormone that regulates your body’s sleep and wake cycles.

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