When we think of a late night snack, usually images of junk foods flash in our minds. Some cheese loaded nachos with French fries or a slice of pizza (or more than a slice) are the sort of foods that we associate with the ideal late night snack, and these may serve the purpose of pleasing and satisfying your taste buds for that moment, but they are highly unlikely to help you sleep. What if you had to satisfy your late night hunger and help your sleep deprivation at the same time? All this is possible from certain snacks and you want to look at the list of foods that may help you sleep. See below for a well-researched list of foods that can help you sleep at night.
Foods That Help You Sleep
What most of these foods have in common is the hormone called melatonin (as a sleep aid). Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone which your body produces, and it’s the hormone that is produced by the pineal gland. It is also found in the eyes, gut and the bone marrow. This melatonin hormone is often mistaken as something that instantly puts you to sleep, but in reality, it doesn’t quite work like that. Melatonin actually only regulates the sleep cycle of the body — circadian rhythm. The foods highlighted below have good amounts of melatonin in them that help the body sleep at night.
Bananas are famous for containing melatonin. You can either snack on a banana just as it is or gets creative and make it extra delicious. You could make an amazing late night healthy snack by simply slicing up bananas and dipping it in a delicious coating. You can try the cocoa covered snack by simply cutting up thick bananas pieces and covering it in a cocoa layer. For the covering, take some pure cocoa powder and have some melted coconut oil mixed in it to make a delicious chocolate frosting. For an extra bit of treat for yourself, add some chopped peanut or almond bits to the chocolate. You can prep this snack and keep it in your freezer and make it instantly as when late night snacking calls. If you are a little more into nuts, try switching up the chocolate coating with unsweetened almond butter. Almonds will add an extra boost of melatonin along with magnesium, which is also known for its sleep aid properties. The best part of this snack? It’s under 200 calories and that won’t mess up your diet either.
Sour cherries can also make for an excellent snack. They are known for their sleep aid properties even though they only contain a smaller amount of melatonin hormone. You can have cherry juice as a snack as well and get extra anti-inflammatory properties to help your body. These have been tested on regarding their sleep-promoting properties. In a study, old women with insomnia were made to drink cherry juices for breakfast and before bed. According to the findings of the study, the group that drank cherry juice slept almost one and a half hour more than the group that didn’t, so cherry juice, if you need a late night snack, is a great addition to our late night snack list!
This calorie friendly fruit has another sleep boosting hormone called serotonin, which is essentially a calming hormone for the body to relax more than a sleep aid. What’s more? It has the ability to curb carbs which would be a plus for your diet. These have proven to be extremely relaxing for the body and eventually helps in a good night’s sleep. A study conducted on twenty-four adults who were having difficulty sleeping. These adults were given kiwis before bed, and the findings tell us that by the end of the month, it took the participants less time to fall asleep than before the introduction of kiwis.
Pistachios have the highest amount of melatonin as compared to other dry fruits. You can snack on pistachios as they are or add them to your frozen chocolate covered banana slices. For a cookie snack, you can make oatmeal cookies with added pistachios to help you sleep. Studies have shown that pistachios contain more melatonin than many other fruits and dry fruits and a handful of these dry fruits contains the same amount melatonin as some supplements. There are several ways you can snack on pistachios, but all of them will definitely help you relax and possibly get to sleep faster.
These berries can also be snacked on or juiced as a snack to help you sleep. Goji berries are famous for their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, but they have some amount of melatonin hormone in them as well. A study was conducted to show the sleep boosting properties of goji berry juice. The group that drank goji berry juice showed better sleeping patterns. Moreover, drinking goji berry juice also improved the quality of their sleep as it helped the body relax.
Strawberries are the delicious fruit that everybody loves to snack on endlessly. The good thing is that this lovely fruit is extremely low in calories. About two cups of strawberry will be a lot less than two hundred calories, but most importantly, these contain an amount of magnesium as well which relaxes the nerves and helps you sleep well.
For some bonus snacks, try adding berries and nuts to yogurt to have a lovely bowl of sleep boosting snacks. Yogurt contains calcium which also proven to be a sleep aid. You can top a bowl of oatmeal with some fruits such as bananas or berries. You can even prepare oatmeal cookies with bananas and add some nuts to it for the boost of soothing hormones that will help decrease the time it takes you to fall sleep. All these delicious treats can be enjoyed at night without any worry of consuming unnecessary calories.
As mostly it is seen that our young generation have the habit of staying up till late night as when they stay up late, they feel hunger too, and when they want to satisfy their appetite they normally order some fast food like pizza, fries, etc. type things which are not healthy as well as unlikely helps to sleep. So as mentioned above in the article, some fruits are listed which are healthy as well as helps you to take a good sleep. You should try these!