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Sleep-friendly Superfoods Your Secret Weapons for Great Sleep

By Steven Willis   |   Posted in Sleep Research   |   Thursday 30th October 2014

Sleep-friendly Superfoods  Your Secret Weapons for Great Sleep

superfoods and sleep

The term ‘superfood’ has entered the mainstream in recent years, reserved for a set of foods that pack an extraordinary nutritional punch compared to their lesser, non-super counterparts. Superfoods are usually discussed in terms of their detox qualities or their energy-producing abilities, and they’re valued by those who follow a healthy diet and lifestyle. But did you know that there are some superfoods that include sleep-boosting potential among their many powers?

Diet and sleep is inextricably linked. What we put into our bodies during the day of course has a direct effect on our energy levels during daylight hours, and making the wrong food choices – whether it’s what we eat, how much we eat or when we eat it – can spell disaster for our sleep quality that night. In an almost cruel twist, how well we sleep during the night is largely responsible for our appetite and cravings the following day. This means that a bad night’s sleep can easily lead to a day of high energy cravings and overindulgence of the types of food that should really be avoided, and another night of poor sleep to follow.

So, introducing one or two snooze-inducing superfoods into your daily diet may just be the difference between good nights and good days, or falling into the vicious circle of cravings, energy spikes and continuous bad sleep.

Cherry Juice

Montmorency cherry juice was found to boost sleep quality in a 2011 study of athlete recovery at Northumbria University. Researchers found that sleep duration and ‘efficiency’ was improved with just two 30ml servings of the tart juice every day, while daytime energy levels also increased, as the urge to nap was reportedly lower.  


Blueberriesblueberries

Blueberries are packed with antioxidants and they’re low in calories. Whether they’re eaten as a snack or part of a meal, blueberries have the power to sate appetite far more effectively than alternatives that may not be so good for your body. The upshot of having blueberries in your diet, besides having a nutritionally-positive boost, is that you’ll be more likely to stick to regular mealtimes and avoid falling into an energy-craving body emergency where poor food choices become more tempting. So when it comes to bedtime you’ll be ready, rather than feeling the effects of heavy digestion or still buzzing from an ill-advised energy spike.


Kalekale

Kale has been the ‘poster-veg’ in some quarters for a while now thanks to a rich combination of nutrients, fatty acids and vitamins, as well as the fact that it’s widely available organically-grown, but it can also add improved sleep to its long list of benefits. A high magnesium content contributes to this effect, relaxing both the mind and body. Magnesium is known to lower neuronal transmission, resulting in mental calmness as well as muscular relaxation, the perfect preparation for good sleep.


Almondsalmonds

Nuts are well-known superfood staples, but their high fat content does tend to put many people off having them in their regular diet. As with any food stuff moderation is the key, and by limiting consumption to small portions you can enjoy the benefits without experiencing any negatives. When it comes to the superfood nut that’s best for aiding sleep quality, the almond makes a great case for itself. As well as a high magnesium content, almonds also contain potassium and tryptophan, which contribute to the body’s production of melatonin, a key sleep-inducing hormone.


Low-Fat Greek Yoghurtgreek yoghurt

The process of making Greek yoghurt involves straining extensively and removing some of the lactose and sugar content that remains in regular yoghurt. This results in an end product that is thicker, with up to half the amount of sugar and double the amount of protein. This rich protein content makes Greek yoghurt a great choice at breakfast time as it makes you feel fuller for longer, reducing the chances of an energy slump and helping you stick to a healthy diet – improving your sleep quality in the process.




Are You a Yearner or a Log? Sleeping Positions and Their Meanings

Tuesday 28th October 2014

Are You a Yearner or a Log? Sleeping Positions and Their Meanings

The act of falling asleep isn’t an exact science – everyone has their own unique way of doing so, and we can sleep in many different positions. Most of these positions fall into three distinct categories, each with their advantages and disadvantages: on your back, on your front, or on your side. Let’s take a look at the three categories and at the variations within each…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Are You a Yearner or a Log? Sleeping Positions and Their Meanings

The Hidden Dangers of Drowsy-Driving

Monday 27th October 2014

The Hidden Dangers of Drowsy-Driving

Many of you have probably never even considered the dangers of driving whilst tired, or weren't even aware of the concept of drowsy-driving: in reality, drowsy-driving is a serious health hazard and there are some worrying statistics for the number of fatalities linked to the issue. This may come as some surprise considering how much coverage other driving issues such as drink-driving and speeding get in the press and on the news – so why is society so ignorant towards tired-driving?

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: The Hidden Dangers of Drowsy-Driving

What Your Dream Says about You

Thursday 23rd October 2014

What Your Dream Says about You

The interpretation of our dreams has become a very popular subject in recent years, although the origins of dream interpretation can be traced as far back as ancient Egypt where dream meanings were depicted using hieroglyphics. As a society, we’re always striving for self-evaluation and self-improvement, and analysing dreams can be a way of discovering how you’re really feeling inside. However, dream interpretation is not without its critics and analysis shouldn’t always be taken literally – our own research found that people were only really likely to believe the meaning of a dream if it was a positive meaning, opting to discard any negative analysis. Although dream interpretation is only really just guesswork, it can offer some good insights about your own personality, so read on to discover what your dream could be saying about you…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: What Your Dream Says about You

The Perfect Recovery - Memory Foam Mattresses for Sportspeople

Tuesday 21st October 2014

The Perfect Recovery - Memory Foam Mattresses for Sportspeople

When you think about sport, sleep isn’t exactly the first thing to come to mind. However, leading athletes are increasingly highlighting the role that sleep plays in their top-level performance, with deep, quality sleep now acknowledged as an absolute must for their training and recovery processes.  

Category: Memory Foam Mattresses

Read full: The Perfect Recovery - Memory Foam Mattresses for Sportspeople

6 Morning Hacks to Wake up Feeling Fresh and Ready to Go

Monday 20th October 2014

6 Morning Hacks to Wake up Feeling Fresh and Ready to Go

Having to get out of bed is arguably one of the hardest tasks of the day; “Just give me five more minutes!” But it doesn’t have to be so hard – there are a few tricks you can try to feel fresh and ready to tackle the day. Most of the content of our blog focuses on tips to fall asleep more effectively, however the process of waking up in the morning can be just as important, and just like falling asleep, it’s a process that many people aren’t doing right and are needlessly suffering by doing so. Here are 6 tips to wake up and instantly feel like the real you…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: 6 Morning Hacks to Wake up Feeling Fresh and Ready to Go

Making an Informed Decision about Buying a New Mattress

Tuesday 14th October 2014

Making an Informed Decision about Buying a New Mattress

The time has come. You’ve decided your old mattress just won’t do anymore and you’re thinking of upgrading to something new. The signs have been showing for a while: it feels lumpy, it sags, and it’s nearing the 5 year lifespan that many mattresses don’t survive beyond. So far, so good. But it’s the next step of the mattress-buying process that people often get so, so wrong…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Making an Informed Decision about Buying a New Mattress

How a Memory Foam Mattress Can Improve Your Life

Monday 13th October 2014

How a Memory Foam Mattress Can Improve Your Life

Mattresses come in all shapes and sizes, and it’s hard to know which one’s best for you. One mattress material that has gained popularity in recent years is visco-elastic memory foam. Memory foam was originally developed by NASA, but nowadays it’s available to the masses and is widely used in hospitals throughout Europe due to the muscle relief and comfort it offers. Let’s take a look at how a memory foam mattress can significantly improve your night’s sleep…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: How a Memory Foam Mattress Can Improve Your Life

5 Life Changing #SleepHacks

Wednesday 8th October 2014

5 Life Changing #SleepHacks

Is your poor sleep quality impacting on how you feel during the day? Perhaps it’s time to introduce a sleephack or two to improve your situation. Check out these common problems and their sleephack solutions.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: 5 Life Changing #SleepHacks

Sleep through the Ages: How Our Need for Sleep Changes as We Grow Older

Wednesday 8th October 2014

Sleep through the Ages: How Our Need for Sleep Changes as We Grow Older

Your quality of sleep has a huge influence on your quality of life regardless of age, yet many people underestimate the value of a regular good night’s sleep. Our need for sleep as a young child varies drastically to our sleep requirements as an adult, but it’s equally important for adults and children to be getting the sleep they need. The following is just a general guide – everyone is different, but age is a good indicator of the quality and quantity of sleep we need.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep through the Ages: How Our Need for Sleep Changes as We Grow Older

Animals and Sleep: How Dogs, Cats, and Other Wild Animals Get Their Rest

Monday 6th October 2014

Animals and Sleep: How Dogs, Cats, and Other Wild Animals Get Their Rest

All living creatures have a need for sleep and rejuvenation – we sleep, animals sleep, and even plants have their own form of sleep. We humans need around 8 hours per day, but what about the animal kingdom? How do they sleep? How much do they need? Let’s take a look at some examples…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Animals and Sleep: How Dogs, Cats, and Other Wild Animals Get Their Rest

Sleep Deprivation and Driving

Tuesday 30th September 2014

Sleep Deprivation and Driving

Have you ever felt sleepy behind the wheel? Buckle up to read just some of the ways in which sleep deprivation can affect your driving.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep Deprivation and Driving

Sleep Paralysis: When Nightmares Become Reality

Monday 29th September 2014

Sleep Paralysis: When Nightmares Become Reality

Imagine waking up through the night unable to move, unable to talk and unable to breathe properly… pretty scary, right? Imagine all that, whilst feeling a demonic presence in the room, or even seeing a black figure standing at the end of your bed – this is sleep paralysis…

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep Paralysis: When Nightmares Become Reality

Sleep and Sports Performance

Wednesday 24th September 2014

Sleep and Sports Performance

Consistently getting a good night's sleep can significantly imporove your athletic capabilities - here's how:

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep and Sports Performance

Sleep Deprivation and Work

Tuesday 23rd September 2014

Sleep Deprivation and Work

A day at work after a bad night's sleep is always tough... here's why.

Category: Sleep Research

Read full: Sleep Deprivation and Work

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