Top Vitamins and Minerals for Healthier Sleep
Hey snoozers. We’ve talked about nighttime rituals, how to arrange your bedroom, exercising, and even ASMR in order for you to get the absolute best night’s sleep you’ve ever had. One thing we haven’t talked about is what types of vitamins and minerals that could aid you on your quest for the best slumber known to mankind. As a disclaimer, you should definitely consult your physician if you are experiencing insomnia or other sleep problems that last for a long period of time. Although these recommendations are all natural and will not require any kind of prescription, you should not take these in excess in order to fall asleep. Vitamins and minerals can enhance your sleep cycle but are not necessarily a cure for chronic sleep issues.
Let’s start with a more uncommon choice: valerian root. While not exactly a mineral or vitamin itself, valerian root contains critical vitamins and minerals like calcium, magnesium, EFA’s, beta-carotene and B vitamins. And I just love the way it sounds; I’m already calmer after saying the word aloud. But seriously, valerian root has ‘roots’ in ancient Greek and Roman records as a remedy for anxiety since it increases the amount of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain. This means that valerian root helps reduce the amount of nerve impulses, causing the individual to become more relaxed. It usually does not work right away, but gradually introducing the remedy into your system over time should improve your quality of sleep.
2. Vitamin D
Some people are a bit shocked to learn that the “sunshine” vitamin is listed here for enhancing sleep. Vitamin D helps us in lifting our mood, controlling inflammation, and supporting our immune system. The link between Vitamin D and sleep lies in a Vitamin D deficiency. Adults age 50 and older are especially vulnerable to the effects of a Vitamin D deficiency as it relates to their quality of sleep. More and more research has come about in recent years that directly correlates a low Vitamin D count and poor sleep. All the more reason for us to go out and enjoy the sunlight, since that’s the easiest and best way for our bodies to produce Vitamin D, although you can still get some through foods like dairy, juice, fish oils, and egg yolks.
Melatonin has become one of the more popular sleep aids in recent years but is also a hormone that is naturally produced in the body. Melatonin helps regulate our day and night cycles, meaning that when night arrives, our bodies tend to start feeling sleepier than when it’s daylight. Likewise, the daylight helps us wake up by suppressing the production of melatonin in our bodies. If you are opposed to buying supplements, small amounts of melatonin can also be found in vegetables, fruits, grains, and meat.
4. Vitamin E
Vitamin E has been found to help your immune system and protect your cells from damage. As a powerful antioxidant, this vitamin protects the body from free radical damage and promotes healthy aging. It has also been confirmed that Vitamin E can help your memory when you don’t get enough sleep. One of the issues we face when we’re sleep deprived is forgetfulness, but that can be mitigated with Vitamin E. It does this by protecting the functions of the hippocampus in the brain, which is very important to memory association. You can get a healthy dosage of Vitamin E by eating sunflower seeds, wheat germ oil, spinach, tomatoes, broccoli, and almonds.
5. Calcium & Magnesium
We are putting the last two together in one section since these are often recommended together and can also be bought together as a supplement. Having either a lack of calcium or magnesium can often lead to sleep disruptions through the night. Calcium and Tryptophan, another chemical that aids in sleep, work together to produce Melatonin naturally. There have also been studies that relate magnesium deficiencies directly with insomnia. You can get a healthy source of both minerals from greens, seeds, and nuts.
Thanks for tuning in to this week’s blogpost, and we hope you learned something new about which vitamins and minerals are helpful in enhancing your sleep. This is not a comprehensive list by any means as there are tons of natural sleep aids out there. Do a little experimentation and see what works best for you; just remember to only take the recommended amount. Also note that you might not notice any change right away, but as the minerals or vitamins build up in your system, their effects become more evident. Catch you later; it’s time for my afternoon nap!