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I’m about to tell you two things, and I don’t think either of them will come as a surprise. First thing’s first, I love to sleep. Give me a hard mattress with a soft cover, a fluffy white doona (duvet), one thick pillow, and some blackout blinds and I’ll see you in a thousand years. Sleep is my fave.
So you get it, I love the zzz’s. But, I’m something of a night owl. And what’s worse, I’m a snacky night owl. You see, my partner works the late shift, and instead of going to sleep by myself I tend to wait up for him, work on my own projects, and graze. Yes, I hit the cupboards, a cracker here, a square of chocolate there, maybe a few berries…
Which, it turns out, can be not great for your sleep habits. For example, one of my favourite sleepy time snacks was a few squares of dark chocolate. Antioxidants! A tiny indulgence! The thing is, there’s actually a lot of caffeine in that chocolate. Which I guess I knew, but just conveniently forgot/ignored?
So, these three toast recipes. These bad boys are a night time snack that won’t keep you up for hours. They’re based on ingredients that will actually help you sleep. Magnesium for muscle relaxation, whole grains to make you sleepy, and protein to keep you full throughout the night.
I find the ‘food as medicine’ philosophy totally fascinating. So the idea that I can actually tailor my snacks to be delicious, but also sleep aiding? Kind of amazing. I feel more like a kitchen sorcerer than ever before.
So I’ve got a Blueberry, Almond Butter and Maple Toast (my personal fave), a Fig, Ricotta and Walnut Toast (a Mediterranean classic), and a Peanut Butter, Cinnamon and Raspberry Toast (a fancy PB&J). All of which will be just fine to fill your tummy with a few hours before you sleep. Click on the links for recipes!
Aside from knowing your snacks, there are a lot of other ways to improve your sleep. And when you love it as much as I do, these can be really handy to know, so:
- Stick to a sleep schedule
- Practice a relaxing bedtime ritual
- Avoid naps
- Exercise daily
- Evaluate your room, and remove distractions (noise, light, etc)
- Get a comfy mattress and pillow
- Manage your circadian rhythmns, with bright light in the morning, and low light at night
- Avoid alcohol, cigarettes and heavy, spicy meals before bed
- Wind down before you go to bed, and get away from screens!
- If you can’t go to sleep, get out of bed and do something relaxing until you feel tired. Try to make sure you’re only in bed when you want to go to sleep…
So tell me, what kind of a sleeper are you? Do you love it like I do? I have to imagine that you do, I mean, who doesn’t like sleep? That’s crazy! But if you don’t I’d love to hear about it.