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8 Foods That Surprisingly Impact Sleep

8 Foods That Surprisingly Impact Sleep

 

We all know that drinking coffee before bed will make it hard to fall asleep, and that drinking warm milk will help us fall asleep faster —  at least according to our mothers. But did you know that there are plenty of other foods that can impact our slumber? By making a few small changes in your diet, you may not be cured of your insomnia, sure, but you’ll be much better off for it. Check out some of the best — and worst — foods for a good night’s rest.

See Also: A Surprisingly Simple Way to Make Better Food Choices

 

1. Good: Walnuts & Almonds

Almonds contain hefty doses of magnesium, tryptophan and melatonin, a trifecta of ideal sleep-promoting aids. Try eating a handful an hour or so before bed.

Also Check Out: Are Juice Fasts Actually Healthy?

 

2. Bad: Grapefruit.

There’s nothing like heartburn for keeping you up all night, and grapefruit increases your stomach’s acidity. If you’d like to avoid heartburn, stay away from grapefruit and other citrus fruits and juices before hitting the sack.

Related: 5 Crazy Fad Diets (Slideshow)

 

3. Good: Oatmeal.

Most of us only eat the stuff in the morning, but the benefits of eating oatmeal before bed might change your habits. Oatmeal is full of plenty of sleep-promoting nutrients, like magnesium, potassium calcium and phosphorous.

Earlier: 8 ‘Bad’ Habits That Are Good for You

 

4. Bad: Celery.

No, really! Celery is certainly a healthy veggie, but it’s not best to eat it before bed. Why? Well, celery is a natural diuretic, and, unless you want to disrupt your slumber with a middle of the night bathroom run, it’s best to avoid it.

Other Natural Diuretics to Avoid Before Bed: Ginger, Parsley.

More: 11 Surprising Uses for Duct Tape

 

5. Good: Raspberries & Tart Cherries.

Melatonin is a popular supplement for sleep aid, and there are a few, though not many, natural sources of the stuff. Your best bets are raspberries and tart cherries.

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6. Bad: Greasy & Fried Foods.

People who eat fatty, greasy and fried foods in the evening tend to get less productive sleep than those who don’t. Your stomach is working extra hard to digest the stuff, and can lead to indigestion and heart burn. It’s fine to indulge in calorie-rich foods every once in a while, but try to do so at least 3 hours before you go to sleep.

Earlier: 16 Creative Ways to Use Garlic

 

7. Good: Bananas.

With plenty of potassium and magnesium, bananas are an excellent late night snack and natural muscle relaxer. It also contains tryptophan, the same amino acid that gives turkey its famous sleep-inducing reputation.

Also Check Out: 7 Incredible Hikes (Slideshow)

 

8. Bad: Spicy Foods.

Spicy foods will certainly take a toll on your gut, but they also may impact your sleep. It’s best to avoid spicy meals right before hitting the sack.

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Read more: Alternative Therapies, Basics, Cholesterol, Colitis, Crohn's & IBS, Conditions, Diet & Nutrition, Eating for Health, Food, General Health, Green Kitchen Tips, Health, Healthy Aging, High Blood Pressure, Mental Wellness, Natural Remedies, Obesity, Raw, Vegan, Vegetarian, ,

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Katie Waldeck

Katie is a freelance writer focused on pets, food and women’s issues. A Chicago native and longtime resident of the Pacific Northwest, Katie now lives in Oakland, California.

253 comments

+ add your own
8:18PM PDT on Jul 10, 2014

thanks.

8:19PM PDT on Apr 25, 2014

Good to know. Thanks.

5:39PM PDT on Apr 23, 2014

Thanks

8:45AM PDT on Apr 22, 2014

Thanks

6:37AM PDT on Apr 16, 2014

Thanks! Great reminders of different foods to try :)

9:30AM PDT on Apr 14, 2014

I think I might just go and eat a banana tonight!

2:54AM PDT on Apr 3, 2014

But almonds or bananas give you plenty of energy you are not going to use and burn so late, so... they can't be good if you have some extra pounds...

10:20AM PDT on Apr 2, 2014

I am still surprised about the oats.

4:01AM PDT on Apr 2, 2014

The choice instead of chemicals to rely on

2:16AM PDT on Apr 2, 2014

Thank you :)

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