To eat, or not to eat - that is the question! An
unspoken rule when trying to catch a good night's sleep is to ditch
caffeine and cheese but what should you really avoid? We're going
to investigate the midnight snacks that will either take you to the
land of nod or keep you up all night.

  • Tryptophan is an amino acid that's
    believed to induce sleep. This is because it's a precursor to the
    sleep-inducing chemicals serotonin and melatonin in the brain.
    Tryptophan is present in small amounts in most protein-rich foods
    and in higher amounts in yoghurt, milk, oats, bananas, dates,
    poultry, eggs and peanuts. With that much good stuff, it's hard to

  • Combine these tasty,
    high-tryptophan treats with rice, pasta or potatoes to help the
    body get the most benefits from tryptophan. Try a chicken and
    noodle stir-fry or similar. Drink warm milk with a cracker or
    oatcake before bed - you'll feel so relaxed…

  • Sleep is all about routine.
    Forming regular eating patterns will make it easier to fall asleep
    in the evening. It's a good idea to eat dinner four hours before
    going to sleep and to establish a ritual, such as drinking a sleepy
    tea before bed.

  • Reduce your caffeine intake
    gradually. Try decaffeinated coffee or caffeine-free drinks like
    red bush tea.

  • Build relaxation and exercise into
    the day to help manage stress: although not food-related, this is
    important and helps get those insides working!

  • Why not swap sugary cereal for a
    wholegrain alternative, topped with milk and a sliced banana

Whether or not you eat before sleep
we would love to hear your sleep snack do's and don'ts, so let us
know on Twitter and Facebook!