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Ah, sleep. Who knew something we protested so much as children would become something we value so much as adults? Whether it’s because of our increased work and personal demands, inability to unplug from our smartphones at night, or stress that is, unfortunately, keeping us up, the United States seems to be in a nationwide sleep-deprived state. According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, sleep deprivation – less than 7 hours per night – has been linked to irritability, anxiety, lack of motivation or energy, forgetfulness, and even poor decisions. Sleep is yet another crucial piece of the complex health puzzle that impacts our overall wellbeing and quality of life.
And as with most things related to our health, the foods we eat and the activities we engage in can make an impact. While there’s no silver bullet or magic weapon to suddenly guarantee you’ll get a solid night’s sleep, a diet rich in unprocessed, whole foods is a great way to start.
Below are seven foods that may positively impact your sleep quality or promote a night of restful sleep.
If you’re hungry prior to bedtime, opt for a simple smoothie that will leave you feeling satisfied and not overly stuffed. Make this recipe below and divide it into two portions: one small glass for tonight and one for tomorrow. Sweet dreams!
Sip on this smoothie before it’s time to hit the hay. This ingredient combination of complex carbohydrates and calcium-rich protein may gear you up for a restful night’s sleep. Feel free to top your small smoothie with some dark chocolate shavings or 1 to 2 tablespoons of dried tart cherries.
McKenzie JonesMcKenzie is Registered Dietitian Nutritionist for NutriBullet who aims to make the world a healthier, happier place. She believes that living a healthy lifestyle and eating for your health isn't meant to be complicated -- it's meant to be simple, enjoyable, and judgment-free (with room for dessert). When she’s not dishing out nutrition tidbits, you can find McKenzie running after her energetic toddler, hiking along her favorite trails, visiting her local farmers market, or cooking in her sunny kitchen.