Seven foods that will help you get better sleep, according to experts trends now
Wondering whether you can simply eat your way to a better sleep? The answer, according to experts, is yes.
The relationship between diet and sleep is two-sided, says registered nutritionist Gabi Zaromskyte.
'What we eat and drink affects our sleep, but also, the quality and duration of sleep can affect our food choices,' she explains.
'Scientific research has increasingly shed light on the significant impact of dietary choices on cognitive function, mood, and overall physical and mental health.'
Certain dietary patterns, as well as specific nutrients, have been found to influence the sleep-wake cycle, sleep latency (the time it takes to fall asleep), and sleep architecture (the different stages of sleep), notes Zaromskyte, founder of Honestly Nutrition.
Wondering whether certain foods can affect your sleep patterns – or if eating certain things could actually help improve your sleep? (stock image)
'And the quality and timing of our food and beverage intake can impact the production of sleep-regulating hormones, such as melatonin, which plays a critical role in regulating our sleep-wake cycle,' she adds.
However, as Dr Maja Schaedel, co-founder of The Good Sleep Clinic points out, it's important to understand that most research done so far shows that, even though certain foods may be higher in melatonin, that does not necessary equate to falling asleep quicker.
'You may have higher levels of melatonin, but if you've got stuck in a bad habit of tossing and turning for two hours before drifting off, or waking at 3am and not being able to return to sleep, foods high in melatonin are not going to solve your problem,' says Dr Schaedel.
Meals should be based on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, ideally wholegrain, according to the NHS
• Eat at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day. All fresh, frozen, dried and canned fruit and vegetables count
• Base meals on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, ideally wholegrain
• 30 grams of fibre a day: This is the same as eating all of the following: 5 portions of fruit and vegetables, 2 whole-wheat cereal biscuits, 2 thick slices of wholemeal bread and large baked potato with the skin on
• Have some dairy or dairy alternatives (such as soya drinks) choosing lower fat and lower sugar options
• Eat some beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meat and other proteins (including 2 portions of fish every week, one of which should be oily)
• Choose unsaturated oils and spreads and consuming in small amounts
• Drink 6-8 cups/glasses of water a day
• Adults should have less than 6g of salt and 20g of saturated fat for women or 30g for men a day
Source: NHS Eatwell Guide
She suggests that generally, it's best to eat your evening meal at least two hours before