Insomnia is a problem that has plagued all of us at least a couple of times. It’s defined as the “inability to fall asleep and stay asleep” and can be caused by a variety of problems including stress, sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome.
Because of the lack of sleep, insomniacs tend to suffer from daytime drowsiness, fatigue, irritability and have difficulty coping with everyday situations.
While everyone suffers from insomnia every once in a while, frequent (every night or second night) bouts of insomnia may be signs of a larger problem like depression, gastrointestinal problems and endocrine problems. If you’re a regular sufferer, it’s advisable to consult your doctor who can run necessary tests.
An individual who regularly suffers from insomnia can also control the problem with an appropriate diet. Here are some tips:
Eat Melatonin Boosting Foods
Melatonin is a hormone which the body associates with sleep; more melatonin in your system will therefore make you feel drowsier.
Some foods contain components which boost the production of melatonin. These include cherries (eat handful an hour before bed time), oats, sweet corn, rice, ginger, tomatoes, bananas and barley. Melatonin is also an antioxidant which can help fight heart disease and cancer making the benefits of eating these foods threefold.
Additionally, experts recommend eating magnesium rich foods such as beans, nuts, seeds, avocados, yogurt, bananas and fish – as magnesium also boosts the body’s production of melatonin.
Herb It Up
You probably already know that chamomile tea is an excellent remedy for insomnia as it brings on a light drowsiness. Other herbed and flavoured teas you can sip on are lavender, orange and lemon; each of which work towards relaxing your system.
Try incorporating a good amount of these herbs in your dinner as well; try a lemon chicken or herb roasted root vegetables recipe.
Battle Fatigue With Food
One of the worst side effects of insomnia is that it prevents you from going about your day to day routine because you feel overwhelmingly tired. You may even be tempted to take naps through the day which will further mess with your sleep patterns at night.
Keep yourself alert through the day with the right diet. Start your day with a bowl of cereal; research has found that beginning the day with large amounts of fibre gives you a wonderful boost of energy.
Chicken broth has also been found to keep your brain alert as have lentils, almonds and eggs.
Why not give these measures a try and see if they help you fight insomnia?