You are encouraged to make bananas a daily staple.
They're packed with potassium and magnesium -- nutrients that double as natural muscle relaxants.
Bananas also contain the sleep-inducing amino acid tryptophan -- which ultimately turns into serotonin and melatonin in the brain.
It takes about an hour for tryptophan to reach the brain, so plan your snack accordingly.
High-protein foods promote sleep, and they also fight acid reflux, said Jacob Teitelbaum, medical director of the Fibromyalgia and Fatigue Centers.
A smart bedtime snack is two slices of cheese or lean meat.
Fresh fruit is also a good snack before bed.
Almonds are full of protein.
Almonds also provide a solid dose of magnesium, promoting sleep and muscle relaxation.
Eat a handful before bed or spread some almond butter on toast.
Drinking a warm glass of milk will encourage sweet dreams, suggests Donald Hensrud, chair of the division of preventive medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.
Milk is full of tryptophan, so it will have a sedative effect.
"If you can't sleep or if you're waking up in the middle of the night, get out of bed and have some milk," Hensrud said.
Cherries are a natural source of melatonin, according to a study in the Journal of Experimental Botany in 2011.
Have a handful an hour before bedtime.
If fresh ones aren't in season, go for cherry juice or the dried variety.
Green tea contains theanine, which helps promote sleep.
But really, all varieties are soothing enough to encourage drowsiness, so long as they're decaf.
One bowl of oatmeal provides plenty of calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon and potassium -- all sleep-promoting nutrients.
Go easy on sweeteners, though, since too much sugar could prevent you from sleeping well.
While loading up on sleep-promoting foods is important, so is steering clear of those that will have the opposite effect.
Research shows that people who eat heavy, fatty meals shortly before bedtime clock fewer hours of sleep than those who don't.
Be more cautious if you suffer from acid reflux. Meals loaded with calories and fat can worsen indigestion and heartburn.
If you do eat a heavy meal, make sure it is at least three hours before you go to bed.
Go easy on caffeine, especially if it's late afternoon or you're getting ready to call it a day.
Caffeine is usually the reason for troublesome sleep.
"We metabolize caffeine differently -- there's a genetic basis," Hensrud said.
Don't drink alcohol before going to bed, or at least stick to a moderate amount.
Initially, those beers may induce sleep, but ultimately you're in for a fragmented snoozing.
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