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Five Healthy Snack Ideas that Help with Sleep

Update Date: Aug 07, 2014 04:04 PM EDT

Sleep is a very important part of everyday life. When people get a full night's rest, they can feel rejuvenated both mentally and physically. On the other hand, when people do not sleep well, they can feel grouchy and tired. For people who have difficulty with sleep, here are five healthy snack ideas that you can try:

1. Banana with Almond Butter

Combining a small banana with one tablespoon of almond butter can curb late night hunger while boosting sleepiness. Bananas contain high levels of potassium, which is a natural muscle relaxant whereas almond butter has a lot of magnesium and calcium, two nutrients that have been tied to inducing sleepiness. Not only do these two foods help with sleep, they are also low in calories.

2. Deli Turkey and Whole Grain Crackers

Eating pieces of deli-style turkey on top of whole grain crackers can improve sleep without causing the waist to expand. Deli-style turkey, which is a lean protein, contains tryptophan. Tryptophan is an amino acid that can make you feel sleepy. The meat combined with the whole grain crackers can keep the body feeling full throughout the night.

3. Greek Yogurt and Mixed Berries

During late night hours, many people start to crave sweets. Instead of reaching for high-calorie desserts, such as ice cream or a slice of cake, people could satisfy their sweet tooth with some naturally sweet mixed berries over some Greek yogurt. Not only is this snack a lot healthier, it can also help you sleep faster. Yogurt contains an amino acid that can trigger the body to produce melatonin, which is a hormone tied to inducing restful sleep. The mixed berries, such as raspberries and strawberries, contain vitamin B6, which also triggers the body to produce melatonin.

4. Apple and Low-Fat Cheese

Another sugary but healthy option that people can turn to is an apple, which is high in fiber. A small apple mixed with low-fat cheese can keep the body full for a longer period of time. On top of that, cheese contains protein, calcium and tryptophan, which can improve sleep.

5. Unsalted Almonds or Pistachios

Nuts are very healthy snack options when consumed in moderation. Even though the majority of nuts are healthy, unsalted almonds and pistachios in particular can help with sleep without adding too many calories. These nuts contain magnesium, which triggers melatonin production. Pistachios, in particular, are low in calories.

These are only five options that people can eat to improve their sleep without jeopardizing their waistlines.

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