Sleep is crucial. It gives the body and mind time to rest, so that we are ready for a new day. The only problem comes when we are unable to fall asleep and lay awake at night knowing that tomorrow will be awful. Tossing and turning all night can be frustrating. You may have tried a million strategies to catch some up on some sleep. From counting sheep to singing lullaby’s, you may have tried it all. The answer lies in your diet. Here is a list of 10 foods that help you sleep better:

1. Bananas

If you are having trouble sleeping, go and grab yourself a banana. Nutritionists worldwide suggest that the magnesium in this fruit helps relax muscles and nerves. It promotes better circulation and digestion. Eat a banana and sleep peacefully.

2. Salmon

To plan for a good night’s sleep , you may need to plan for a sleep friendly dinner. Salmon is a good choice to make as it has omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to reduce surges of stress hormones and promote restfulness, according to the UCLA Center for East-West Medicine. If you don’t like salmon that’s okay, try another kind of fish dish. Fish contain vitamin B-6 which helps in the production of melatonin that helps catch some sleep.

3. Tart Cherry Juice

Take a drink before it’s time for bed. A 2010 Journal of Medicinal Food study, conducted on older adults, suggests that a glass of tart cherry juice, a natural source of melatonin, may significantly reduce insomnia. Tart cherry is one of the very few natural food sources of melatonin.

4. Oatmeal

The thought of warm oatmeal before bed may already make you sleepy. So go for it. A healthy bowl of oatmeal helps promote sleep because of its content of calcium, magnesium and potassium. Alternatively, you can keep some oatmeal cookies on your side table and eat before going to bed. Oatmeal has got great benefits and it’s pretty good for weight loss too.

5. Tofu

Tofu is a rich source of high-quality protein and, depending on how it’s made, usually contains a significant amount of calcium. It is a soy food and a really good bedtime snack. You can make a tofu dessert or try this delicious tofu scramble to help you sleep better.

6. Milk

Are you hoping to sleep like a baby? Well maybe following their diet is a good idea. Milk is an excellent bed time beverage to help you fall asleep. Milk products contain tryptophan as well as the stress-reducing nutrient calcium.

7. Almonds

This magnesium rich food makes for a delicious bedtime snack. Magnesium helps promote sleep. Munch on almonds to make for a relaxing night of sleep.

8. Cereal

An easy to make bowl of cereal can help you sleep so much better. The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) suggests trying a carb-protein combo, such as whole-grain cereal and milk. According to the NSF, carbs in cereal make tryptophan (an amino acid that causes sleepiness) more available to the brain. And the protein found in milk is actually a building block of tryptophan. This high fiber diet makes sleep come naturally and easily.

Instead of having to brew coffee for your work day so you can stay alert, make a bedtime snack to help you sleep better. Minor changes in your diet can help you go a long way. Eat healthy and smart and sleep better.


  • Kristina P.

    Certified Sleep Consultant

    Kristina is a passionate sleep consultant helping people improve their productivity and overall health by sleeping better at night. She has helped hundreds of people overcome their sleep challenges and enjoy a good night's sleep.