In my twenties I had the best sleep one could imagine – falling asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow and waking up fresh and restored. Now there are often moments when I find myself trying yoga for relaxation at 1 am because I can’t fall asleep, although I’m tired and there’s an early alarm waiting for me in the morning.
New research says that a snack before bed might be a good thing, giving your body a dose of melatonin for natural sleep regulation and healthy carbs for cellular renewal. And guess what, smoothies aren’t just for breakfast!
Bedtime Smoothie for Better Sleep
There are many reasons why we can’t get enough sleep, and aging isn’t always the problem. Staying late in front of the computer or browsing on your mobile, the never-ending to-do list waiting for you in the morning, skipping meals and eating late in the evening – these are just a few reasons why your brain stays alert and prevent you from falling asleep easily.
Fortunately, there are solutions! You can improve your sleep with these 10 bedtime rituals, like taking a relaxing bath before going to bed, going to sleep at the same time every night, avoiding bright screens within 2 hours before bedtime (be it tablet, computer or mobile), cutting back on caffeine and staying away from big meals and alcohol in the evening – these are some simple rules with long term effects.
But you can also improve your sleep and reduce the amount of time you need to fall asleep by having a bedtime elixir made with some simple, but very effective ingredients:
- Kale – these reliable greens will give you a hand for falling asleep easier, just as they does for detoxifying and nourishing your body. The nutritional profile of kale contain all nine essential amino-acids, including tryptophan, which your body converts to serotonin, a neurotransmitter hormone that regulates the sleep/wake circle and is used by the pineal gland to synthesize melatonin, the hormone related to a healthy sleep.
- Banana – a great source of potassium and magnesium for relaxing the muscles and creating an alkaline environment for your body cells to restore during nighttime. Bananas are also high in tryptophan, the key ingredient for a better sleep.
- Yogurt – and other dairy products contain tryptophan and also calcium, which helps your body to synthesize it to produce the melatonin hormone. While sipping warm milk calms you before bedtime, your body might find it difficult to digest, and this is why natural yogurt, which contains probiotics, is a safer option
- Kiwi fruits – another sleep quality promoting ingredient because they are high in antioxidants (which recent studies have link to a better sleep) and serotonin, the hormone that helps initiating sleep and maintaining it during the night.
- Flax Seeds – are high in omega-3 essential fatty acid, which reduces anxiety and stress (some of the top causes of insomnia) and also tryptophan.
- Almond butter – contains a high concentration of magnesium, which relaxes your muscles, and protein for helping you switch the alert adrenaline cycle to a rest-and-digest cycle for good sleep.
You can combine some of these or throw them all together in a blender to create a wonder smoothie to help you say goodbye to insomnia.
Better Sleep Evening Smoothie
- 1 cup kale leaves
- 1 cup natural yogurt
- 1 ripe banana
- 1 tbsp raw almond butter
- 2 tsp flax seeds ground
- 2 kiwi fruits
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- Blend all the ingredients until creamy and drink straight away.