Blogger: Deb Chapman
Some of my close friends can attest to the fact that I have recently embarked on a quest to eat more healthfully. I’ve given up red meat…(although I can’t deny that sometimes the smell of cooked burgers wafting out the door when I pass a Five Guys makes my mouth water.) I’ve been eating lots of dark, leafy green veggies and I even went out and bought a Nutribullet to make “life-boosting nutrient extraction recipes”. I’ve taken these steps as I hope to live a longer, healthier life.
I’ve also been working hard on getting better sleep, since we all know the importance sleep plays in overall health. However, I haven’t given much thought to the connection between food and sleep. A recent study outlines a number of nutrients in a variety of foods that will help you get your shut eye.
Lycopene: An antioxident found in tomatoes (now growing in my garden!), watermelon, and pink grapefruit
Selenium: An anti-inflammatory found in tuna or Brazil nuts
Lauric Acid: Most commonly found in coconut oil
And, my personal favorite:
Theobromine – a phytochemical found in tea and yes…..in CHOCOLATE!!! We’ve hit the mother lode!
I’ve always been partial to chocolate of ANY kind and now I have just another reason to indulge. Theobromine is a mood-boosting compound found in chocolate which helps relieve stress and anxiety, which very often prevents quality sleep. An ounce of antioxidant-rich dark chocolate also contains serotonin, which relaxes your body and mind. Read more about that and the many other health benfits of chocolate. Make sure to choose dark chocolate (not milk chocolate), and eat only a small 1-ounce square with at least 70 percent cacao (or cocoa, which is cacao in its roasted, ground form). Chocolate does have some caffeine but experts say one ounce is generally not enough to affect your sleep.
So, the next time you find a chocolate on your pillow in that fancy hotel go ahead and give it a try ……it may help you sleep!