6 simple sleep remedies


6 simple sleep remedies

Food & drink rules to live by

Need more sleep? Gretel H Schueller offers some top tips and advice.

Avoid large meals and alcohol late at night
According to the National Institutes of Health, late-night meals can cause indigestion that interferes with sleep. The same goes for alcohol. While a nightcap may help you initially fall asleep, imbibing as few as two alcoholic drinks actually robs you of precious REM sleep, which means you’ll wake up more frequently. Alcohol-related sleep disturbances are worse for women, say researchers at the University of Michigan.

Get to bed early
Try to get your sleep earlier rather than later – as in early to bed, early to rise. People who stay up late tend to eat late, even when they’re not hungry. Many studies indicate that calories from late-night snacking seem to pack more of a punch and may increase cholesterol levels more so than if that same snack was eaten earlier in the day.

Drink decaffeinated coffee or chamomile tea
Caffeine is a stimulant that temporarily makes us feel more alert by blocking sleep-inducing chemicals in the brain and increasing adrenaline production. Drink organic, decaffeinated coffee or chamomile tea, which is a natural, mild sedative, instead.

Eat calcium-rich foods
A calcium deficiency might make it difficult for you to fall asleep, so eating foods rich in the nutrient, such as milk, yoghurt, cheese, kale and broccoli, can help.

Boost your magnesium intake
Eating more magnesium-packed foods, such as bran from rice, wheat or oats, may improve your sleep. Seeds – like sesame, sunflower, squash and pumpkin – are also delicious sources of magnesium.

Grab a banana
This fruit – along with fortified cereals, chickpeas and most fish (especially salmon, halibut and tuna) – contains vitamin B6, which helps the body produce melatonin.

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