Need More ZZZs? These 5 Nutrients Can Help
One of the most effective ways to help your mind and body recover from the daily grind is by getting restful sleep. Unfortunately, many people suffer from sleep disorders that make it hard to fall asleep and stay asleep. Prescription medication and over-the-counter drugs are the usual go-to solution.
What you may not know is that several nutrients help promote sleep and relaxation.
1. Magnesium: Magnesium is a calming mineral, so it helps you relax and allow the natural sleep process to take over. One study found that for older adults magnesium improves sleep time and efficiency. Other studies suggest magnesiun might help you sleep better when combined with other supplements.
A recent study has shown that supplementing with magnesium, melatonin, and vitamin B complex for 3 months has a significant, beneficial effect in the treatment of insomnia regardless of cause. Susan R writes; “Taking a magnesium supplement before bed helps my muscles relax, nerves settle down and makes sure I get a restful night sleep. I wake up feeling refreshed and ready for the day.”
2. Calcium: Calcium works together with magnesium to relax muscles and is often taken at bedtime to induce sleep. A lack of these nutrients can cause difficulty falling asleep and getting back to sleep. Calcium also helps the brain to produce the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin and is necessary for reaching deep sleep cycles. In a note from Bevely, she says; “I love the calcium magnesium chewables. It’s beneficial to my muscles so that they relax and I get better sleep.”
3. Viatmin B Complex: B Complex vitamin has been known to help with sleep regulation. Vitamin B6 aids in the production of the hormones serotonin and melatonin, both of which are important to sound, restful sleep, and also to mood. Some evidence suggest that in combination with melatonin and medicinal plants, vitamin B6 may be beneficial in improving sleep quality and daytime function in participants with mild to moderate insomnia. Vitamin B12 also helps increase the body’s production of melatonin, making it important for regulating sleep-wake cycles. Another client, Hannelore notes; “Taking 2 B-Complex a day helps with stress and a good night’s sleep.”
4. Omega-3: Similar to vitamin B12, Omega-3s help the body produce more melatonin. A randomized controlled trial published in the journal Nutrients found that participants given supplements containing omega-3s slept faster and longer than those who got a placebo.
In a University of Oxford study, children given 600 mg of DHA daily for 16 weeks got nearly an hour more sleep and fewer sleep disruptions, on average, than they did before the trial.
5. Vitamin D: Vitamin D is another vitamin that keeps your sleep-wake cycles aligned and working nicely. A meta-analysis with more than 9,300 participants published in the journal Nutrients found that low blood serum levels of vitamin D were associated with poor sleep quality, fewer hours of sleep, and daytime drowsiness. A recent study found the links between insufficient sleep and lack of Vitamin D to be especially strong in adults age 50 and older.
All the preceeding essential nutrients play important roles for your body to function and provide numerous health benefits. Knowing that they may also help improve sleep quality is a great bonus.