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Research Studies on Foods that Act as Natural Sleep Remedies

Recent research has found that certain foods can act as natural sleep aids. Learn more about how these foods can assist with better, deeper sleep.

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May 1, 2014 (FPRC) -- If we were to eavesdrop and listen in while the “Father of Medicine” Hippocrates spoke to his students in 400 B.C., we would hear him saying: "Let thy food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food.” These words ring even more true today, when WorldHealth .net reports that each year prescription drugs injure 1.5 million people to the degree that they require hospitalization. Sleeping drugs, also known as “hypnotics”, come with their own set of side-effects.

For those who seek natural options, some recent research studies have uncovered unique sleep inducing foods that can help with insomnia.

In a study from the University of California San Diego, researchers examined the effects of potassium supplementation on sleep quality. A placebo-controlled study compared one week of oral potassium chloride supplements to one week of identical placebo capsules. Their results were published in the journal “Sleep”, and showed that potassium significantly increased sleep efficiency due to a reduction in “Waking After Sleep Onset”. This indicates an improvement in sleep consolidation (less interruption) with potassium supplementation.

One of the highest sources of potassium is the banana, which contains about 400 milligrams. Eating a banana before bedtime or during the night may help reduce the frequency of nighttime awakenings. Other sources of potassium include baked potatoes, sunflower seeds, spinach, almonds and prunes.

In another study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers measured the effect that different types of rice have as sleep remedies. Mahatma rice (low carbohydrate rice) was compared to Jasmine rice (high in carbohydrates) for their effects on sleep quality. The rice was eaten either four hours before bedtime or one hour before bedtime. The study concluded that a high carbohydrate-based meal resulted in a significant shortening of the time needed to fall asleep, when eating it four hours before bed time.

The seed oil of garden lettuce has been used in folk medicine since ancient times as a sleeping aid. A study from the June 2011 issue of the International Journal of General Medicine examined the effectiveness of lettuce seed oil in people who had frequent insomnia. At the end of the one-week study, 18 out of the 25 patients who took the lettuce seed oil supplements rated their insomnia as “very much or much improved”, while only five of the people in the placebo group reported better sleep.

Eating a lettuce salad with some heart-healthy olive oil in the evening may assist the process of relaxation when it comes time for bed. The darker the color of green the leaves are, the richer the lettuce is in vitamins and minerals.

According to William Sears, M.D., “The best bedtime snack is one that has both carbohydrates and protein, and perhaps some calcium. Calcium helps the brain use the amino acid tryptophan to manufacture melatonin. This explains why dairy products, which contain both tryptophan and calcium, are one of the top sleep-inducing foods."

Natural sleep remedies containing highly absorbable, quick acting forms of calcium and magnesium, such as Sleep Minerals II from Nutrition Breakthroughs, can be helpful with both falling asleep and staying asleep during the night. This natural sleep aid contains calcium, magnesium, vitamin D and - all combined in a softgel with carrier oils. Oils such as natural rice bran oil have been shown to increase mineral absorption and increase bone density.

Alex R. of Ramseur, North Carolina says: "Sleep Minerals II has been a blessing for me. It has given me the opportunity to withdraw from a highly addictive sleep medication over time, and has allowed me to sleep while going through this most difficult ordeal. What's great about it is it doesn't lose its effectiveness, which is something that happens with sleep medications. I am most thankful for this product."

Hippocrates sums it all up by saying: “Natural forces within us are the true healers of disease.” Many natural remedies have multiple benefits in the body, so seek out natural options to increase your life force and overall health.

For more information on Sleep Minerals II, visit www.NutritionBreakthroughs.com.

Send an email to Jobee Knight of Nutrition Breakthroughs
(818) 913-4308

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