Can’t sleep? Try snacking on one of these 10 foods

Snoring: Doctor explains how to sleep better at night

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It can be hard to drift off when you are focussing too much on falling asleep and pressuring yourself to go to bed super early in order to get your eight hours. They say you shouldn’t eat close to bedtime, but there are a few little snacks that could make you more sleepy. chatted to the experts at Dreams and nutritionist Rosie Millen to find out the 10 foods to eat to improve sleep quality.

Food is fuel, and fuelling your body with the wrong fuel at the wrong time can be a recipe for disaster and lead to sleepless nights.

According to nutritionist Rosie Millen, making simple tweaks in your diet can really help you sleep.

She said: “Research shows that foods you might not usually consider actually contain sleep-promoting properties, such as magnesium, tryptophan and antioxidants, that will all encourage individuals to drift off more easily and quickly”.

Cheese and crackers

Despite cheese supposedly giving people nightmares, studies have found that dairy products can actually help you sleep.

Calcium, found in cheese, yoghurt, and milk, helps the brain use the tryptophan found in dairy to manufacture sleep-triggering melatonin.


Dark chocolate contains minerals that can help regulate sleep, such as calcium, magnesium, and theobromine.

It also contains serotonin, which relaxes the body and mind


Surprisingly, lettuce contains something called lactucarium, which can make you feel sleepy.

The latest TikTok trend has meant many people are trying boiled lettuce tea before bed


Cherries are another excellent food source of melatonin – the chemical that controls the body’s internal clock to regulate sleep.

During the 10 months of the year, when cherries are out of season, dried cherries and cherry juice (especially tart cherry juice, which contains less sugar) are suitable substitutes.

Passionflower tea

For a restful night’s sleep, try sipping a cup of passionflower tea right before bed.

This tea will help sleep, as a study published in the Nutrition Journal found that passionflower minimises stress-related conditions and improves your ability to nod off by modifying the receptor binding neurocognitive process.


Eating a walnut-rich snack an hour or two before bed could help you drift off to sleep more easily.

Walnuts are a good source of the amino acid tryptophan. One serving of walnuts (about a handful) contains 318mg of this beneficial amino acid converted into melatonin.

Chamomile tea

The perfect night-time drink to sip on. Chamomile tea contains apigenin – an antioxidant that binds to specific receptors in your brain that may promote sleepiness and reduce insomnia.

Try drinking a cup 30 to 60 minutes before you go to bed.


This pink fish contains vitamin B6, which again encourages the production of melatonin, the sleep-inducing hormone triggered by darkness.

Salmon is also a good source of Vitamin D, which is essential for sleep. Vitamin D deficiency is associated with disrupted sleep patterns.


Figs are another magnesium-enriched food, which really helps with sleep.

Figs can help regulate the metabolism and therefore reduce sleep disorders such as insomnia


These delicious nuts are a good source of magnesium which is a significant muscle relaxant because it dilates blood vessels.

Almonds, therefore, help to reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which is known to interrupt sleep.

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