When preparing for bed, most people reach for a warm cup of milk or a cold glass of water. However, if you want something with more substance and science-based benefits for helping you get to sleep, it should be walnuts. While you may not think of this nutritious nut as the most obvious choice for pre-bedtime snack, walnuts are full of nutritional benefits that are great for your overall health as well as help promote a restful night of sleep.
Walnuts contain more alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)—an anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acid—than any other nut. Additionally, a serving of walnuts contains 4 grams of protein, 2 grams of fiber, and 11 percent of your daily magnesium needs. They also supply many antioxidants, such as polyphenols, which improve gut health and reduce risk of chronic disease.
While you could eat walnuts any time of the day, bedtime is a great time to eat walnuts because they have numerous compounds that are tied to healthy sleep patterns. They’re a good source of tryptophan, an amino acid that your body uses to produce serotonin and melatonin – both involved in regulating sleep.
Excerpted from the Preston Citizen