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12 Bedtime Snacks/Drinks That Can Help You Sleep Better

12 Bedtime Snacks/Drinks That Can Help You Sleep Better

There is plenty of advice available to cure insomnia. For example, the fruit alphabet is said to promote sleep. While there are plenty of OTC remedies, some are addictive or have undesirable side effects. Many find it preferable to use natural remedies instead. In this way the person is working with their own body to get a good night’s sleep.

1. Warm Milk

Researchers have long touted the benefit of a warm cup of milk for a better night’s sleep. Further, warm milk lowers dangerous cortisol levels, that rise as a result of stress. Those who are lactose intolerant can receive the same benefit from almond milk.

2. Protein and Carbs

Try a light snack of peanut butter on a cracker about a half hour before bed. Scientists do not recommend a heavy meal, before sleep, but a very light snack of cheese or peanut butter and a cracker can be extremely beneficial.

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3. Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Foods rich in magnesium help people sleep better according to scientific research. Roasted pumpkin seeds are a delicious way to add this important mineral to the diet and it serves as a very light bedtime snack.

4. Almonds

These little nuts are believed to enhance sleep for several reasons. The protein helps lower blood sugar and almonds are rich in magnesium, which is said to help sleep. Try a handful a half-hour before bed or as a milk or spread almond butter on a cracker.

5. Chamomile Tea

Chamomile is another remedy that experts have recommended for a very long time for those who suffer from insomnia. The tea is very soothing and calming, and of course, is caffeine-free. Some have paired this remedy with other natural remedies, such as magnesium, to enhance the benefit.

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6. Soy Beans

This salty snack is especially helpful to women with symptoms menopause. Research indicates that foods rich in soy isoflavones reduce hot flashes brought on in menopause. Blend two cups of soy beans with a dash of salt, a quarter teaspoon of olive oil, and a single clove of garlic for a light dip.

7. Oatmeal

Enjoy an oatmeal cookie with milk or a warm bowl before bedtime for a great night’s sleep. New studies indicate that oats contain melatonin and complex carbohydrates that are surprisingly helpful for those who have trouble sleeping.

8. Banana

This sweet snack came as a bit of a surprise, yet studies confirm this bedtime snack is highly beneficial. Bananas are very high in the vitamins that relax muscles, potassium and magnesium. Add a dab of peanut butter for some protein.

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9. Yogurt

Yogurt naturally contains tryptophan, a proven sleep enhancer. Tryptophan, is also in warm milk and studies show that eaten in yogurt the amino acid is digested easier. People who are lactose intolerant may find yogurt to be a better alternative to milk as well.

10. Green Tea

A soothing cup of decaffeinated green tea is highly beneficial in a number of ways including getting a good night’s sleep. Green tea contains the amino acids, theanine, which has proven to be important to a healthy night’s sleep.

11. Montmorency Cherries

Cherries, especially montmorency, are high in the sleep aid melatonin. Melatonin is a hormone found by researchers that is a natural sleep aid. Eat four or five cherries forty-five minutes to an hour before bedtime.

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12. Fish

Most fish, especially salmon and tuna, increase the production of melatonin. Fish is also rich in vitamin B6 a proven nerve soother. The vitamin has also been shown to relieve symptoms of restless leg syndrome, for those who have difficulty with this insomnia inducing disorder.

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Last Updated on May 21, 2020

The Top Fad Diets That Are Actually Worth the Hype

The Top Fad Diets That Are Actually Worth the Hype

You have probably seen enough fad diets to last a lifetime. Many have become popular overnight and left just as quickly.

Some fad diets, though, have actually passed the test of time and are making some headway in the nutritional world.

Outlined below are four fad diets that are actually beneficial for your health and wellness. Read on to find out why you should consider adopting one (or more) of these healthy eating styles today.

An important concept you should keep in mind is to disregard the term “diet” as it is typically used. The word diet implies the idea of restriction and removal. Instead, think of the word diet in this context as a healthy eating lifestyle.

Let’s take a look at some of these healthy eating lifestyles that have been categorized, by no fault of their own, as fad diets.

1. The Paleo Diet

The paleo diet, or ancestral eating, is simply eating the way your paleolithic ancestors would have up to 10,000 years ago, or when the agriculture age began.

The advantage now is you don’t have to do this in a loin cloth, unless you want to… The focus of this diet is proteins, vegetables, some fruits, nuts and seeds and some healthy fats.

In the paleo diet, there aren’t any grains, starchy carbohydrates, sugars, or dairy.

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How Your Health Can Change With Paleo

The paleo diet is a good way to keep your blood sugar under control. It can also have a positive effect on type 2 diabetes, and can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease.

With this healthy eating lifestyle, people have also achieved good weight loss results and boast improved energy levels. [1]

It’s not just what’s in the paleo diet that’s important, it’s what’s NOT in it. There aren’t any processed and manufactured foods, junk foods, artificial ingredients or chemical additives.

Paleo is a way of eating that gets you more in tune with your body and, therefore, can provide a lot of benefits.

2. Whole30

The Whole30 diet is relatively new and owes its popularity to social media and the #Whole30 Instagram hashtag that allowed people to share and broadcast their success with the diet.

With Whole30 you are taking 30 days and focusing on nutritious whole foods such as meats, nuts and seeds, seafood, eggs, vegetables, and fruits.

During the month you are eliminating:

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  • sugar
  • alcohol
  • legumes
  • grains
  • dairy
  • soy

Whole30 is similar to paleo, but it goes a bit further eliminating sweeteners such as honey or maple syrup.

At the end of the 30 days, you strategically reintroduce those eliminated foods back into your diet to discover any possibility of health consequences from them or even potential food allergies.

Finding Out How Food Impacts You

Most people eat the same things so often and may not realize that certain foods are causing health consequences, as they’ve become accustomed to feeling lethargic and run down.

With Whole30 you get the chance to see how these foods may have a negative impact on your body. You’ll also reset your taste buds, which may have become desensitized from processed and artificial “foods” and excess salt.

This diet will help you regain your love of food… in a healthy way!

3. The Mediterranean Diet

The Mediterranean diet has been at the top of the list as a very effective diet for some time now.

For people in countries like Italy or Greece, this has simply been a normal way of life–along with higher activity levels, sunlight exposure, proximity to water, and lower stress.

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With the Mediterranean diet, the focus is on heart-healthy foods. It looks like this:

  • Fruits & vegetables
  • Whole grains
  • Legumes & nuts
  • Replacing butter with olive oil
  • Using herbs and spices instead of salt
  • Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week
  • Moderate amounts of red wine

Help Your Heart & Overall Health With A Mediterranean Diet

Information from the Mayo Clinic shows that this diet reduces heart disease and lowers your “bad” LDL cholesterol. Studies involving 1.5 million people demonstrated that the Mediterranean diet was associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular mortality, along with overall mortality. [2]

With all these benefits, this is definitely a “fad diet” that’s worth the hype.

4. The Alkaline Diet

The alkaline diet is about changing the foods you eat so that you put your body into an alkaline state and out of an acidic state. When your body is too far on the acidic side it can result in a condition called acidosis. This can lead to issues in your body such as upset stomach, breathing difficulties, headaches, weakness and, fatigue. In extreme cases, it can result in shock, coma, or death.

The goal is to get your body in a more alkaline state, which results in overall better health. The focus is on including alkaline boosting foods such as fruits, nuts, vegetables, and legumes. You’re also wanting to reduce acidic foods such as low quality beef and poultry, dairy, eggs, grains, and alcohol.

Pros & Cons With The Alkaline Diet

The benefits that come from this way of eating is that reduction in inferior quality foods, processed items and alcohol. You may feel improved energy levels, mental clarity and even better joint health.

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People also report weight loss but again this may come from the reduction in calories from junk and processed foods but this is not a bad thing at all.

One con with this diet is that the pH value of the food you eat might not have an impact on blood pH, as your body is able to balance this pretty well on a day-to-day basis.

Follow These Fads for Better Health and Wellness

There can be a danger in categorizing things as a fad diet because fads come and go. People are always looking for the next big thing or a quick fix.

The four examples above buck that status quo. These diets, though mainstream, actually can give you benefits and aren’t going to go away anytime soon because they work.

What makes these diets special is that they boast real whole foods and the eliminate processed and manufactured junk.

The Big Takeaway:

Whatever way you choose to eat, the focus needs to be on whole unprocessed foods. Look for the cleanest, local and most natural things you can find for the benefit of your overall health and wellness. Your body and mind will thank you.

Featured photo credit: Dan Gold via unsplash.com

Reference

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