9 Foods That Help You Sleep (Slideshow)

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Eat some of these foods for dinner and get a good night’s sleep

Bananas

Bananas are well known for being rich in potassium and are also a good source of vitamin B6, which is needed to make melatonin, which helps you fall asleep. 

Cherries

Cherries are one of the few natural foods to contain melatonin, the chemical that helps control our body's internal clock, so some cherry juice before bed could help you sleep more soundly.

Chickpeas

Chickpeas boast vitamin B6, which is needed to make melatonin, which can successfully aid in helping you fall asleep.

Cereal

Fortified cereals boast vitamin B6, a vitamin that is crucial in making melatonin (a sleep-inducing hormone).

Fresh Herbs

Fresh herbs can have a calming effect on the body. Sage and basil, for example, contain chemicals that reduce tension. Try to incorporate these herbs into your dinner. Avoid red and black pepper at night, as they may keep you up. 

Jasmine Rice

Including high-glycemic-index (GI) jasmine rice with your meals before you go to bed has been shown to increase the ratio of sleep-inducing tryptophan relative to other amino acids in the blood, which allows more to get to the brain, making it easy for you to fall asleep.

Lean Protein

Lean protein contains tryptophan, an amino acid, which increases serotonin levels, which play a key role in regulating sleep. Lean protein is found in foods such as beans, fish, greens, and eggs. Consuming tryptophan late in the day will release melatonin and serotonin for good sleep. It speeds up the onset of sleep, decreases the level of spontaneous awakenings during your sleep, and helps to increase the amount of refreshing sleep that you get.

Lemon Balm

Benefits of lemon balm include better digestion and decreased agitation, both of which can be main contributors in preventing you from getting a good night's sleep.

Heart-Healthy Fats

Unsaturated fats improve heart health and serotonin levels. Foods like peanut butter and nuts such as walnuts, almonds, cashews, and pistachios are good examples.