Miss Farah

Celebrate National Sleep Awareness Week March 7-13

Posted on: March 7, 2010


The National Sleep Foundation’s National Sleep Awareness Week is today through next Sunday. So how’s your sleep awareness?

I know many people who spend long hours at work and are deprived from sleeping. I also know many children who sleep late and come to school with no energy at all. Today I sat with my students and explained to them that it’s national Sleep Awareness week and talked to them about the importance of sleeping. I told them that if you sleep more you will be smarter and will have more energy.

There are actually some food that can help you sleep:

So what is the secret to getting a solid 7 to 8 hours of sleep? Head for the kitchen and enjoy one or two of these  foods. They relax tense muscles, quiet buzzing minds, and/or get calming, sleep-inducing hormones…

Bananas.   They’re practically a sleeping pill in a peel. In addition to a bit of soothing melatonin and serotonin, bananas contain magnesium, a muscle relaxant.

Chamomile tea.   The reason chamomile is such a staple of bedtime tea blends is its mild sedating effect – it’s the perfect natural antidote for restless minds/bodies.

Warm milk.   It’s not a myth. Milk has some tryptophan – an amino acid that has a sedative – like effect – and calcium, which helps the brain use tryptophan. Plus there’s the psychological throw-back to infancy, when a warm bottle meant “relax, everything’s fine.”

Honey.   Drizzle a little in your warm milk or herb tea. Lots of sugar is stimulating, but a little glucose tells your brain to turn off orexin, a recently discovered neurotransmitter that’s linked to alertness.

Potatoes.   A small baked spud won’t overwhelm your GI tract, and it clears away acids that can interfere with yawn-inducing tryptophan. To up the soothing effects, mash it with warm milk.

Oatmeal.   Oats are a rich source of sleep – inviting melatonin, and a small bowl of warm cereal with a splash of maple syrup is cozy – plus if you’ve got the munchies, it’s filling too.

Almonds.   A handful of these heart-healthy nuts can be snooze-inducing, as they contain both tryptophan and a nice dose of muscle-relaxing magnesium.

Whole-wheat bread.   A slice of toast with your tea and honey will release insulin, which helps tryptophan get to your brain, where it’s converted to serotonin and quietly murmurs “time to sleep.”

Turkey.   It’s the most famous source of tryptophan, credited with all those Thanksgiving naps. But that’s actually modern folklore. Tryptophan works when your stomach’s basically empty, not overstuffed, and when there are some carbs around, not tons of protein. But put a lean slice or two on some whole-wheat bread mid-evening, and you’ve got one of the best sleep inducers in your kitchen.

It can be challenging to get an active toddler to bed, but most children will respond to a comforting, consistent routine designed to help get them to sleep

Check out on how to get your child sleep here

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