If you’re looking for bedtime smoothies to help you sleep, you’re in the right place.
Getting a good night’s sleep provides you with so many health benefits. I know I get grumpy if I don’t get enough sleep, I have less patience, I’m less creative and less able to problem-solve and focus.
If you’re trying to lose weight, research shows that getting enough sleep for your body’s requirements can help you make better decisions when it comes to food choices.
In a study conducted on 1522 European adolescents, the participants who had insufficient (less than 8 hours) or borderline insufficient sleep (between 8 and 9 hours) were more likely to make bad quality choices compared with the participants who’s sleep duration was optimal (greater than or equal to 9 hours).
Another study into sleep supported the theory that short sleep duration, poor quality sleep, and late bedtimes are associated with bad food choices, excess food intake, and obesity in adolescents.
Of course, another way your health is affected by a lack of quality sleep is with your cognition. Research supports the thinking that learning, memory, attention, emotional reactivity and higher-order cognitive processes are all negatively impacted by sleep disruption in humans.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one out every three adults in the United States claim that they are not getting a healthy amount of sleep.
So what can you do to get a better night’s sleep? Sleep hygiene is very important but another way to get good sleep is by eating certain foods that promote sleep.
According to research, foods that contain tryptophan and promote the synthesis of serotonin and melatonin may be the most helpful in helping you sleep. You may be saying: “Speak English lady”. OK, so tryptophan is an amino acid, and amino acids come from dietary protein. Tryptophan helps produce the neurotransmitter serotonin which performs many functions in the body. One important function being the conversion to melatonin, the sleep hormone.
Zinc and magnesium have also been shown to help with sleep as have vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and B-group vitamins. Melatonin is a hormone but it can also be found in food. Calcium and magnesium can help relax muscles which promotes sleep.
These smoothies contain oodles of nutrients and compounds that can help you to sleep better and longer. If you’re looking for smoothies for your toddler, we have you covered there too.
1. Delicious Bedtime Banana Smoothie
The hero ingredients of this shake are bananas, almond milk and kiwi.
Almond milk is sleep-promoting because almonds contain melatonin as well as calcium and magnesium, so they are sleep promoting and help to relax muscles.
Bananas are high in potassium and contain magnesium too – great for relaxing muscles.
Kiwi fruit is high in antioxidants and helps the body produce seratonin which can induce sleep.
2. Bedtime green smoothie
In addition to the banana which works as a muscle relaxant with its potassium and magnesium content, Kiwi fruit is one of the main ingredients in this smoothie.
Kiwi fruit is a sleep promoter because it contains a number of sleep-promoting compounds including melatonin, magnesium, calcium, and potassium.
Chamomile tea is widely known as a sleep-promoting beverage. Research points to a flavonoid compound in the tea called apigenin as the sleep-promoting property. Apigenin is known to activate GABA A receptors which can stimulate sleep. responsible for chamomile’s sleep-inducing properties.
This smoothie also contains almond milk which contains melatonin for sleep, and calcium and magnesium to relax the muscles.
3. Chocolate cherry smoothie
The chocolate cherry smoothie is not only delicious but contains cherries, an ingredient we haven’t mentioned so far.
Cherries contain three different sleep-promoting compounds: melatonin, tryptophan, and potassium. They also contain serotonin but serotonin does not cross the blood-brain barrier so unfortunately doesn’t promote sleep. Researchers speculate that antioxidants called polyphenols in tart cherries may also influence sleep regulation.
This recipe also contains cacao which is high in magnesium, a muscle relaxant.
4. Deep sleep smoothie
This smoothie contains chia seeds, almond butter, cacao powder, and Greek yogurt.
The cacao powder provides a dose of magnesium to relax the muscles and the yogurt, seeds, and almond butter contain tryptophan – that’s the precursor to serotonin which leads to melatonin production.
5. Green smoothie for sleep
Our last bedtime smoothie in this round up is this healthy green smoothie containing spinach, bananas, dates, peanut butter, and almond or soy milk.
If you’re not on a dairy-free diet, you can try using dairy milk instead of almond or soy milk. Dairy milk can help you sleep because it contains melatonin, tryptophan, calcium and vitamin D.
Peanuts also contain tryptophan so the peanut butter in this recipe will add to the sleep effect.
Bananas, as mentioned in the smoothies above, contain muscle relaxants potassium and magnesium.