It doesn’t matter if you’re a parent or student, heading back to school can disrupt your sleep schedule and make you feel tired and cranky. The best defense is an earlier bed time, but for most of us shifting our schedule is easier said than done. One of the easiest ways to hasten your slumber is to eat something that will keep you from being hungry and help you relax.
There are a few different myths regarding sleep that generally don’t work, like watching television, taking a hot bath or watching TV. Drinking a glass of wine can dehydrate you and wake you up, and watching TV can stimulate your brain and make sleep even more elusive. For children, video games and TV can present real problems for them as they try to sleep, and a hot bath too close to bedtime can raise their temperature just enough to make it harder to sleep. Giving kids a healthy snack while they wind down with a book or quiet activity can help create a routine that will make sleep easier as the school year progresses.
The good news is that a carbohydrate-rich snack can really help. It can raise your serotonin levels and make you feel drowsy – making sleep easier. Choosing something healthy, like whole wheat toast with peanut butter or air-popped popcorn can be a delicious and easy way to head off to sleep satisfied. Snacking before bed, if done correctly and with moderation, doesn’t necessarily pack on extra pounds. It can actually help your metabolism, regulate your blood sugar, and help your energy levels when you’re awake. Here are some delicious options for sleep-inducing snacks.
If you’re not a snacker, having a balanced meal with complex carbohydrates 2-3 hours before bed can also help. Here are some great recipes for satisfying pastas that are also high in protein and a healthy option.
- Angel Hair and Honey Butternut Squash
- Chipotle, Pumpkin and Chicken Lasagna
- Quick Chicken & Veggie Skillet
Getting back on schedule and getting enough sleep can be surprisingly simple. Once you get back on track you’ll have more energy, and you’ll find it easier to stay on schedule as the year progresses! So get started tonight, and you’ll find that soon everyone in your home is better rested and ready to learn.