Diet and nutrition is essential to us leading a happy and healthy lifestyle - including getting a great night's sleep.
To help us sleep as well as possible we need a good balance of the hormones serotonin and melatonin in our system. Eating foods such as chicken, cheese, tofu, tuna, eggs, nuts, seeds and milk will help to boost these hormone levels. A glass of milk before bed is a great way to induce sleep.
Eating breakfast within 30 minutes after waking up is one of my golden rules. So many people who struggle to get out of bed skip breakfast and become reliant on caffeine to get them through the day. Eating breakfast within 30 minutes of waking sends a message to the brain that there is adequate food in our environment and creates the ideal internal chemistry for optimal sleep.
The ideal breakfasts for good sleep include things like porridge topped with nuts and seeds, eggs with wholemeal toast or natural yoghurt with muesli and fruit.
Snacking during the day on yoghurt, fruit, nuts, seeds, lean meats or hummus will help to keep your blood sugar level stable.
Avoid a heavy meal before bed time. If you often wake up in the night feeling hungry then try having a very small snack before bed - such as a slice of toast with honey or hot chocolate.
Finally, remember that sleep - although incredibly vital to our health and wellbeing - is only one way in which we renew, rebalance and energise ourselves. Also vitally important are other aspects of our physical health (nutrition, exercise, other forms of rest and relaxation, hydration), as well as our mental, emotional and spiritual health. Paying attention to all of these other areas of our health can go a long way towards restoring balance and wellbeing.