If you're suffering from the symptoms of insomnia at night and feeling sleep-deprived during the day, you're not alone. Get a better night's rest with one of these sleep-inducing snacks or tricks that will have you enjoying your Z's in no time.
Here are some of the best healthy bedtime snacks to naturally help your body to sleep without medication.
Try tart cherries. Cherries are rich in melatonin, a sleep-producing hormone that will help relax you. Researchers recommend eating them an hour or more before bed.
Indulge in chocolate. Decadent dark chocolate lowers blood pressure and can help ease anxiety, but be sure to eat just a few small squares; an entire bar could keep you up at night.
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Eat some yogurt. You may know that eating turkey makes your drowsy, but yogurt is another source of tryptophan, that same amino acid that causes sleepiness post-Thanksgiving.
Combine walnuts and oatmeal. Walnuts are another great source of tryptophan, and the calcium in a small bowl of oatmeal and milk will help eliminate nighttime wake-ups.
Pop some corn. Popcorn is a good source of complex carbs, which keep you feeling satisfied through the night, so you don't wake up hungry.
In addition to smart bedtime snacking, getting into these additional habits can help you achieve better rest. Consider this your ultimate 4-step cheat sheet to getting more restful sleep right away.
Breathe deeply. Try taking a 10 minutes before bed to close your eyes and inhale and exhale slowly for 10 minutes, which helps your body release natural melatonin.
Visualize a happy place. As you lie in bed, picture yourself in your favorite place--a vacation spot, a treasured childhood home--which will help slow your brain waves and lull you to sleep.
Stretch it out. Doing slow, simple stretches each night will relax your tense muscles, signaling to your body that it's time to wind down.
Soak it up. Before bed, sink into a warm tub to relax your muscles, lower your body's core temperature, and ease your stress levels. A few drops of sleep-inducing lavender oil can also help soothe you.