The best 7 foods help sleep

food helps sleep
April 2, 2020

If you have trouble sleeping, you can remedy it naturally. Take note of these foods that help you fall asleep.

foods help sleep
foods help sleep

Only 15% of the population in Spain sleeps eight hours a day, and 25% of adults have difficulty sleeping. But quality sleep is essential: it regenerates, promotes general health and stimulates the proper functioning of the immune and hormonal systems.

For a good rest, we must take care of our diet, guaranteeing the contribution of nutrients that are precursors of neurotransmitters. It also helps to practice physical activity during the day (avoiding that of certain intensity in the evening), to avoid overly sedentary, stressful or unmotivating work, and to review the habits associated with sleep.

During the day:

Consume foods with high nutritional density, avoiding sugars and refined, stimulating and unhealthy fats.

At dinner:

Have a light dinner a couple of hours before going to bed: foods that are easy to digest, such as vegetable creams and simple cooking.

At night:

Go to bed early and don’t look at screens for a long time before. Better to meditate and relax.


When you suffer from insomnia or sleep problems, it is just as important to change your habits as it is to take care of your diet. Some foods and nutrients promote relaxation and induce sleep.


foods help sleep
food helps sleep
  • Banana
    The banana. It has a high content of vitamins, minerals and provides the body with a quick supply of energy. In addition, it contains tryptophan which helps to increase serotonin levels.

This amino acid is a precursor of serotonin or “happiness hormone”, and of melatonin, the neurotransmitter that induces sleep and balance in biological cycles.


foods help sleep
  • Almonds
    Almonds are a good source of healthy fats and proteins, provide abundant calcium and help to provide a feeling of satiety. They also contain melatonin.

To make them more digestive and to avoid the presence of anti-nutrients or substances that hinder the assimilation of their nutrients, it is advisable to leave them to soak in water for about eight hours.

sesame seeds

foods help sleep
  • White tahini or sesame seeds
    Like other seeds, sesame is rich in healthy fats and proteins, but also in minerals such as calcium and magnesium. Along with chia seeds, it is also rich in tryptophan.

whole grains

foods help sleep
  • Wholemeal cereals
    Consuming them guarantees the supply of B-group vitamins, which are necessary as co-factors in the transformation of tryptophan into melatonin.

In addition, together with legumes (a source of protein), wholemeal cereals provide slowly absorbed carbohydrates, which promote satiety and well-being.


foods help sleep

  • Cherries
    The cherry is the fruit richest in melatonin, especially acidic varieties such as Montmorency.

They can be taken for a snack or a while before going to bed, fresh or in juice. If it is not in season, they can also be bought dry without sugar or taken as a supplement.


foods help sleep
food helps sleep
  • Dates
    Dates are rich in amino acids, minerals and B vitamins, necessary for the relaxation and proper functioning of the nervous system.

They help to relieve stress and have a high nutritional density.


foods help sleep

  • Yucca
    In yucca, we have a good source of carbohydrates and fiber. It gives a sensation of satiety and induces the release of insulin, which favours more free tryptophan in the blood and can reach the brain more easily to form melatonin.


(nuts, almonds, peanuts). These are foods rich in group B vitamins. Deficiency of these vitamins can lead to alterations in the central nervous system.


It is rich in vitamins and minerals. It also contains active compounds that stimulate serotonin production. At the same time, other components of pineapple calm anxiety. If pineapple is taken at night, the brain converts tryptophan into melatonin, the sleep hormone, so its consumption is associated with better rest. It also promotes digestion.

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Other nutritional tips to help you sleep

Not only is it important to talk about foods that can help you sleep, but it is also important to consider a number of general measures, and above all, what you should not do:

Avoid large meals

Avoid alcohol consumption.

  • Avoid consumption of coffee, chocolate or tobacco before bedtime.
  • Do not eat acidic foods before bedtime.
  • Eat dinner 1 to 2 hours before going to bed, since heavy digestion may occur and as a consequence, you may not be able to sleep.

Suggested dinner to help you sleep
An example of a dinner that would help improve your sleep would be:


A salad composed of cooked brown rice, lamb’s lettuce, tomato, green pepper, nuts, fresh cheese and seasoned with modena vinegar, oil and salt.
Second: Baked trout with garlic and lemon.
For dessert:

A piece of pineapple.

Following a varied diet composed of all the food groups and organizing our intakes properly is the best way to maintain constant serotonin. The Mediterranean diet is a model to follow, as it is based on eating in a balanced and varied way, adapted to the needs of each person.


you must remember that there must not be excessive consumption of these foods, but everything must be consumed in its right measure without going overboard with the quantities. In this way, you will not only sleep better, but you will also encourage a balanced and varied diet. It is important that you know that these foods help to improve your sleep but do not have any miraculous effect on our body.

If you follow a healthy lifestyle and also incorporate some of these foods into your diet… Nothing will keep you awake!

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