10 foods to help you get to sleep

Chickpeas promote a good night's sleep too.
Jennifer Soo

Chickpeas promote a good night's sleep too.

With research linking a lack of sleep health issues like Alzheimer's, cancer, anxiety and depression, it's never been more important to get your eight hours.

If you're failing to do so, your diet may be partly to blame.   

We've put together 10 foods, forming part of any healthy diet, which may be able to help you get a bit of shuteye. Instead of counting sheep, have a bite to eat!

1. Fish

Most fish, especially types like salmon and tuna are rich in vitamin B6. This vitamin is necessary for the production of melatonin, the sleep-inducing hormone in our bodies.

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2. Almonds

Low levels of magnesium in your body make it hard to achieve quality sleep, so a handful of magnesium-rich almonds might just be the trick to help you nod off.

3. Yoghurt

Eating fish can help you sleep well at night.
Martin de Ruyter

Eating fish can help you sleep well at night.

The inability to achieve deep sleep is related to low calcium levels, so consumption of dairy products like yoghurt is an effective (and delicious) way to get better sleep.

4. Cherries

As mentioned above, melatonin is the hormone that control's our body's own internal clocks, and cherries are one of the few natural foods that contain it.

5. Kale

Green, leafy vegetables such as kale have been also known to provide healthy doses of calcium, which is an essential mineral in terms of getting good quality sleep.

Did you know yoghurt could send you to the land of nod? We didn't.
123RF

Did you know yoghurt could send you to the land of nod? We didn't.

6. Banana

While they're most well-known for being a rich source of potassium, bananas are also a reliable source of the very important, melatonin-producing vitamin B6.

7. Rice

Helping you sleep at night is another reason to love kale.
Evgenia Lysakov 123RF

Helping you sleep at night is another reason to love kale.

Research that suggested that foodstuffs with a high Glycemic Index (GI) can significantly slash the time required to fall asleep of an evening, and rice is a great example.

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8. Chickpeas

Chickpeas are also one of the best sources of the ever-important vitamin B6, which produces the hormone we need when it comes time to fall asleep.

9. Sweet potato

These delicious vegetables are a sleeper's dream. Not only do they provide sleep-promoting complex carbohydrates, they also contain muscle-relaxing potassium.

10. Honey

Containing just the right amount of glucose, honey can help shut off orexin, the chemical in your brain that is known to trigger alertness. A tablespoon should do!

- oversixty.com.au

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