In this difficult period, many suffer from insomnia. Concern for the future, stress, messy schedules, irregular meals … Here are some remedies
Do you struggle to fall asleep in the evening or do you sleep poorly and badly during the night? Insomnia due to the COVID-19 emergency is a very common disorder. In this period 42% of Italians have anxiety problems and 24% suffer from sleep disturbances. This was revealed by a recent investigation by the Piepoli Institute for the National Council of the Order of Psychologists. The worries and fears of the period together with social isolation worsened the quality and duration of the rest for several reasons. When experiencing particularly stressful situations, the body produces high levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, which promote wakefulness. Being indoors at home has also prompted many to engage in behaviors that negatively affect their ability to fall asleep. The lower exposure to sunlight, source of vitamin D, and the use of electronic devices, such as smartphones, until late at night, for example, promote insomnia because they inhibit the production of melatonin, the sleep hormone. To improve night sleep, it can be useful to adopt a tailored sleeping routine and pay attention to daily nutrition. The exciting substances of some foods can make sleep particularly agitated. Here are 5 strategies to adopt at the table to relax and go back to sleep well, suggested by Annamaria Acquaviva, dietician and nutritionist for the California Prune Board.
Eat regular meals
To promote rest, try to maintain a regular routine even at the table. How? Always eat at the same time and follow a varied and balanced diet. The correct intake of all essential nutrients promotes the proper functioning of the body. The nutrients present in foods in fact affect the circadian rhythm, which regulates the sleep-wake cycle.
Don't miss the tryptophan
Tryptophan is a precursor of serotonin, thegood mood hormone, which is converted into melatonin, fundamental in regulating the sleep-wake cycle. Legumes, meat, fish, dairy products and oil seeds are a good source. For example, to relax in the evening and facilitate rest, drink a cup of warm milk before going to bed. Thanks to the presence of casomorphins, natural opiates, it reconciles sleep.
For dinner, bet on carbohydrates
The complex carbohydrates of whole grains and their derivatives consumed without exaggerating facilitate rest. They promote the production of serotonin, which induces relaxation and promotes the synthesis of melatonin, which regulates the sleep-wake rhythm.
Yes also to the fibers
For dinner go-ahead for vegetables such as lettuce, red radicchio that promote rest. Cabbage, artichokes, spicy spices, on the other hand, can be difficult for sensitive subjects to digest. Fruit is also a good source of fiber. California plums in particular have a high content of potassium, vitamin B6, copper and manganese, precious for the proper functioning of the nervous system.
Avoid overdoing it with online appetizers
Spirits induce poor quality sleep. Even meats and cheeses are by no means allies of rest. In addition to providing an important share of calories and saturated fats, they contain high amounts of sodium, which stimulates thirst and disturbs rest.