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3 Nutrients for Better Sleep

Can’t sleep? You’re not alone! There are so many significant world issues right now completely changing our daily routines. Stress, worry, and trying to even figure out a daily routine are really impacting how we sleep. 

Efficient sleep, however, is one of the most crucial recovery ingredients to help keep your immune system running strong! 

Nutrients can play a key role in your sleep efficiency. Here’s a quick guide to help you start fine-tuning your most powerful tool in sleep efficiency. 

Tryptophan

Ever feel tired after a turkey dinner? Many people do! Turkey is high in tryptophan, which is a sleep-promoting compound. If a turkey snack before bed doesn’t sound appealing, barley grass powder in a glass of water may be a great alternative. Some other bedtime snack ideas could include milk, yogurt, pumpkin seeds, flax, apples, or a banana. 

Magnesium 

Magnesium helps promote adequate sleep, too. While many people are familiar with magnesium-rich lotions or supplements, there are foods that contain magnesium, too. Dark chocolate, walnuts, avocado, tofu, Greek yogurt, flax, wheat germ, and chia may offer options for bedtime snacks. Foods don’t have to be eaten alone. For example, you could make a small yogurt parfait with a little dark chocolate on top. 

Melatonin 

Melatonin is a common sleep-promoting ingredient. This compound can also be found in oatmeal, cherries, olives, cucumber, walnuts, sunflower seeds, flax, and various supplements.  

While including nutrients to help support sleep can be helpful, there are a few to avoid within 2-3 hours of bedtime, too. Caffeine and other stimulants, high-fat foods, and high sugar foods can keep you up for hours on end. 

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About the Author: Dr. Meredith Butulis is a Sports Medicine Physical Therapist, NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach, ACSM Certified Exercise Physiologist, NASM Certified Personal Trainer, and Precision Nutrition Certified Nutrition Coach in practice since 2002. She consistently walks the talk as a fitness, physique, and OCR world level competitor and lifestyle transformer since 2006, celebrating many wins along the way. 

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