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Foods to Sleep On

Come 10 pm, when the rest of the world is starting to wind down, you're winding up. Maybe it's something more, but it could be what you're eating (or not eating). Yahoo Health has created this list of the top 10 foods to help you get a good night's sleep.

Bananas. They're practically a sleeping pill in a peel. In addition to a bit of soothing melatonin and serotonin, bananas contain magnesium, a muscle relaxant.

Chamomile tea. The reason chamomile is such a staple of bedtime tea blends is its mild sedating effect - it's the perfect natural antidote for restless minds/bodies.

Warm milk. It's not a myth. Milk has some tryptophan - an amino acid that has a sedative - like effect - and calcium, which helps the brain use tryptophan. Plus there's the psychological throw-back to infancy, when a warm bottle meant "relax, everything's fine."

Honey. Drizzle a little in your warm milk or herb tea. Lots of sugar is stimulating, but a little glucose tells your brain to turn off orexin, a recently discovered neurotransmitter that's linked to alertness.

Potatoes. A small baked spud won't overwhelm your GI tract, and it clears away acids that can interfere with yawn-inducing tryptophan. To up the soothing effects, mash it with warm milk.

There's more so

Oatmeal. Oats are a rich source of sleep - inviting melatonin, and a small bowl of warm cereal with a splash of maple syrup is cozy - plus if you've got the munchies, it's filling too.

Almonds. A handful of these heart-healthy nuts can be snooze-inducing, as they contain both tryptophan and a nice dose of muscle-relaxing magnesium.

Flaxseeds. When life goes awry and feeling down is keeping you up, try sprinkling 2 tablespoons of these healthy little seeds on your bedtime oatmeal. They're rich in omega-3 fatty acids, a natural mood lifter.

Whole-wheat bread. A slice of toast with your tea and honey will release insulin, which helps tryptophan get to your brain, where it's converted to serotonin and quietly murmurs "time to sleep."

Turkey. It's the most famous source of tryptophan, credited with all those Thanksgiving naps. But that's actually modern folklore. Tryptophan works when your stomach's basically empty, not overstuffed, and when there are some carbs around, not tons of protein. But put a lean slice or two on some whole-wheat bread mid-evening, and you've got one of the best sleep inducers in your kitchen.

To read the full article, check out Yahoo health.

Fit's Tip: It's all about the serotonin and melatonin.

Join The Conversation
Infected-by-politicians Infected-by-politicians 5 years
I would love to know why after 2.5 hours of sleep, I can stand in front of the toilet and all of a sudden be wide awake while I never nap during the day. It is driving me insane.
UrbanBohemian UrbanBohemian 10 years
Anything about food and sleep is an article for me!
LaLaLola LaLaLola 10 years
Between school and house work I haven't found that I've needed sleep aids, maybe natural ways to perk up
kelsen kelsen 10 years
I've been having trouble sleeping recently. I'll have to try some of these!
mandiesoh mandiesoh 10 years
quietriott quietriott 10 years
i have tried melatonin on cross-atlantic flights. not really sure if they worked wasn't like an instant zonk-out or anything.
medicgirl medicgirl 10 years
Has anyone tried Melatonin?? I've been thinking about seeing how it works. I'd love to hear feedback from someone who has used it.
SFKitkat SFKitkat 10 years
Thanks for the comprehensive list Fit...lately I've been having trouble sleeping, so these should come in handy.
medicgirl medicgirl 10 years
My mum told me about this just yesterday, I work shift work and lots of those are nights so I sleep like crap! I am lucky if I get 4 hours straight a day/night! Maybe I should eat oatmeal sweetened with honey and mushed bananas.
DesignRchic DesignRchic 10 years
My mom use to give me warm milk AND honey if I had a hard time going to bed as a child. It worked everytime!
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