Can’t sleep? Some foods can actually help

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The dreaded alarm clock is never a pleasant sound to wake up to, but if you can't fall asleep to begin with, the sound can be even more irritating. But what is the secret to a restful night's sleep?

A large majority of research points to a regular routine. "Routine is good for us especially as far as sleep goes," says Ann Graeber a registered dietician with St. Bernards Medical Center.

Being thrown out of a routine is something our crew on Good Morning Region 8 knows plenty about since many of us arrive at work between 11p.m. and 3 in the morning.

Our local heroes over at JPD also know a lot about having a strange sleeping schedule. So we strolled over to see how they function in the abnormal routine of the second and third shifts.

"I read a lot after work that sometimes helps me go to sleep. That's usually about it and if that works," says Susan Gray an officer with JPD. "This week I'm back here and it's up at eight and last night we were called out at 10 and we are on call until about one in the morning and had to get back up at 6."

No matter what your routine, we share 8 great foods to help her and maybe you achieve a more restful night.

Our number 1 sleepy time food suggestion is a warm cup of milk.

Graeber believes the ingredient in milk can also be found at the center of our Thanksgiving table, "I think the one we think about more than anything else is the tryptophan...after the thanksgiving food the turkey makes us sleepy."

That brings us to our number 2 sleepy time food suggestion of turkey.

Also making our top 8 list, taking the number 3 spot is oatmeal and or cereal, both of which pair well with milk and could be the ticket to send you into dream land.

Eggs and salmon take spots 4 and 5. The believed magic behind eating these foods is the large amounts of serotonin and melatonin that can be released into your body.

Coming in at spot number 6 is bananas.

Like the salmon and eggs they also offer you a bit of soothing melatonin and serotonin. Plus bananas also have magnesium which can help relax muscles.

Bananas can also be mixed with our number 1 and 3 sleepy time foods, making a great bed time concoction. "So if you are going to have a snack before you go to bed maybe some cereal with milk and bananas might be a good idea," says Graeber.

Numbers 7 and 8 also may go well on the side of that bowl of cereal: Chamomile Tea and honey.

Be careful though, Graeber says too much honey can be stimulating since it's loaded with sugar.

However, just the right amount could tell your brain to turn off. As for the tea, it's believed by many to have a numbing effect. Between that and the honey it might be the perfect way to end a long day.

Graeber says she can't make promises about any of this food, "The research I've read doesn't support that any of these things are going to make you drowsy." She does say it certainly can't hurt to try the above and below suggestions. She says it's all about trial and error.

As for Officer Gray with JPD, she says not getting enough sleep is wearing on her mind and body. She says she'll be trying some of these foods and only hopes they will work since she says she's tired of being tired.

Top 8 Recommendations:

1-Warm cup of milk


3-Oatmeal and/or Cereal




7-Chamomile Tea


More foods that are known to sometimes send you into dream land:

 1-Peanut butter and jelly sand which

2-Baked potato



5-Tart cherry juice

6-Valerian Tea and honey

7-Chia seeds

8-Cheese on whole wheat crackers

9-Turkey burger and spinach on whole wheat bun

10-Sunflower seeds

11-Cheese and popcorn

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