Foods that help fight insomnia

Diet can naturally help us regulate our rest and treat certain sleep disorders such as insomnia. The key lies in the presence of tryptophan and other nutrients with relaxing properties.

The most common is to use infusions and herbal teas of linden, valerian, lemon balm, passion flower or chamomile, in search of a natural solution to insomnia. Although they are effective, we can also add other foods with relaxing properties and prepare a dinner that helps us fall asleep.

Of course, these foods do not have the properties of a sleeping pill, but they work in a more holistic way thanks to their nutrients, including certain amino acids and vitamins. Some even contain small amounts of phytochemicals with a powerful calming effect.

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Foods that help you fall asleep

These foods, together with certain ingredients, are able to improve our rest because they predispose our body to sleep.

  • Foods containing tryptophan

Tryptophan is an amino acid necessary for the synthesis of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that promotes well-being and, in turn, is a precursor to melatonin, the sleep hormone.

Foods like whole grains, legumes, nuts, potatoes or bananas are rich in this amino acid which promotes rest.

Pumpkin, sunflower, and sesame seeds are great additions to dinners because they provide significant amounts of magnesium, a mineral that helps calm the nervous system and promotes relaxation.

Other foods contain specific substances with calming effects, such as basil. We can include them in salads that will be almost infallible recipes to enjoy a good night’s sleep.

In addition to magnesium and potassium, it promotes the production of serotonin and melatonin, which improves the quality of sleep.

Its seeds contain phytochemicals with a mild sleep-inducing effect.

The stems are coated with lactucarium, a compound with a calming effect.

A natural source of melatonin, it also has certain proteins (avenine and trigonellin) that help reduce nervousness.

A possible menu for dinner

food, insomnia, tryptophan, serotonin, sleep, herbs, tizanes, infusions
food, insomnia, tryptophan, serotonin, sleep, herbs, tizanes, infusions

Chickpea spaghetti with basil sauce

Ingredients for 4 persons)

  • 400g chickpea spaghetti
  • 150g of cashew nuts
  • 150g of fresh basil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 150ml virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • Sea salt
  • grated parmesan or nutritional yeast

Preparation:

  1. For the spaghetti, place a large pot with plenty of water and half a tablespoon of salt on the stove. When the water begins to boil, add the spaghetti and stir it with a wooden spoon so that it doesn’t stick together or stick to the bottom.
  2. Let them cook until al dente. It will be more comfortable if you use the cooking times indicated by the manufacturer as a reference.
  3. For the sauce, separate the tender basil leaves from the stem – reserve a few sprigs for garnish – and place them in the glass of an electric mixer with the peeled garlic cloves, cashew nuts, oil and vinegar. Add a little salt and mix until the sauce has some texture. For an emulsified consistency, you can add a little cold water.
  4. When the spaghetti is cooked, drain it and put it in a fairly large container, add the sauce and stir it gently so that it does not break.
  5. To serve, serve garnished with a few sprigs of basil. Parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast can also be sprinkled on top or included in the sauce when mixing the ingredients.

Alternatives: Instead of cashews, you can use walnuts, almonds, or trail mix.

Banana and cocoa cake

Ingredients for 4 persons)

  • 90g brown rice flour
  • 70g almond flour
  • 80g brown sugar
  • 50g sesame seeds
  • 3 free-range eggs
  • 2 bananas
  • 250 ml oat or rice drink
  • cocoa powder
  • Olive oil

Preparation:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Meanwhile, brush with oil or line an ovenproof skillet with parchment paper.
  2. Mix the rice flour, ground almonds, sesame seeds, brown sugar and mashed banana with a fork in a bowl.
  3. Separate the yolks from the whites and add them to the mixture. Beat the egg whites stiff with a whisk or whisk and set aside.
  4. Mix the ingredients in the bowl, incorporating the vegetable drink. Then add the beaten yolks and mix until well incorporated.
  5. Pour the mixture into the pan and bake for 40 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Leave to cool before unmolding and decorate with a few reserved banana slices and a little cocoa powder.
  7. To decorate, you can also use blueberries. This way, you would not only add color, but you would increase the relaxing properties of the recipe and add the antioxidant power of this very healthy fruit.

Alternatives: If you wish, you can toast the sesame seeds a little to give more intensity to the flavor. You can also replace the egg with a mixture of water and crushed flax seeds. The result will be denser.

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