Considering we spend a third of our lives in bed, it’s important to get the best night’s rest night after night. From having the best mattress to creating a calming bedtime routine, you can increase your chances of getting a good night’s sleep by sticking to the rules of good sleep hygiene. But the answer to good sleep could be even simpler: eating the right food before bed.
Eating specific foods can help you fall asleep quicker and improve the quality and quantity of your sleep. We’ve already looked into types of foods to eat for a good night’s sleep but there’s one plant based food that’s said to be the best for curbing late night cravings, comfort while sleeping and overall relaxation. And the answer is… chickpeas!
How do chickpeas help you sleep?
Chickpeas have a number of sleep benefits as they’re packed full of protein, vitamins and minerals. Due to their high levels of protein, chickpeas calm late night hunger and can induce sleep and relaxation, according to Grubby. Chickpeas are also high in folate and tryptophan, the latter of which acts as a natural sleep aid by increasing the body’s production of melatonin and serotonin. Having increased levels of these hormones helps improve and regulate your body’s natural functions, like pain, appetite, mood and sleep cycle.
Another reason that chickpeas are good for sleep is because they’re high in vitamin B6. Having good levels of vitamin B6 supports normal brain development, the nervous system and immune system, and stimulates the production of melatonin, which helps the timings of your circadian rhythm.
According to Well+Good, chickpeas are low on the glycemic index, meaning their combination of fibre and protein helps slow carb absorption and maintains healthy blood sugar levels. What this means is that if you eat chickpeas before bed or as a midnight snack, your blood sugar won’t spike throughout the night, so you can have a restful night’s sleep.
Chickpeas and hummus are vegan, and vegan food has been proven to help you sleep better. This is because plant-based meals contain less sugar than other diets which makes it easier for the body to digest food. As the digestive system finds it easier to process chickpeas, you’re less likely to be up at night with stomach pain, bloating, indigestion and acid reflux.
So, if you’re finding it hard to get to sleep, a handful of chickpeas or a spoonful of hummus can help you drift off at night and sleep more deeply. For more food and sleep tips, check out these 5 foods that reduce stress & improve sleep if anxiety is disrupting your rest.