Are you counting sheep at night? If you’re having difficulty getting enough shut-eye you might have tried drinking a glass of milk, watching TV, or trying to clear your mind. Fun Fact: Studies show that 20% of the world isn’t getting enough sleep. There are various causes, including busy schedules and worry/anxiety. You might be surprised that another main cause is not getting enough amino acids. These are the building blocks of proteins and are critical for different body functions. They also might be affecting your ability to get a full night’s sleep. The good news is you can improve the quality of your sleep by boost your intake of certain amino acids for sleep that seem to be related to sleep quality.
The key is to know which amino acids to take. There are 20 in the human body including 9 that we have to get from foods and supplements. Studies show that certain ones like GABA and L-Glutamine seem to help people doze off when it’s bedtime. The key is to know which aminos you should be getting more of. There are various causes of sleep deprivation but yours might be related to not getting enough of this or that amino acid. It starts by finding out which ones can help your body and mind to shut down properly.
Amino Acids For Sleep: What Are the Effects?
We all know from experience that eating heavy foods like pepperoni pizza or rocky road ice cream before bedtime can cause us to toss and turn for a while before falling asleep. It’s also worth noting that there are in fact, many causes of not getting enough sleep.
Here are some of them. You might be in a hot/humid environment that’s making you uncomfortable. There might be lots of loud noise from your home or neighbors that are keeping you up. You could even be worried about issues like financial or relationship problems.
However, people often overlook the effects of their diets on sleep. For example, if you’re not getting all the nutrients you need, then it can affect your body’s and brain’s ability to wind down at the end of the day when it’s bedtime.
It might be surprising that many sleep aids include amino acids. It shouldn’t be surprising. For example, consider that not getting enough of particular aminos can make you feel tired and fatigued. So not enough aminos can also cause the opposite effect.
We’re talking about getting enough of certain aminos. There are 20 in the human body and 9 are from foods/supplements. There are another 11 that are non-essential. This doesn’t mean they’re not important but instead, the body produces them.
In both cases, you might not be getting enough of certain aminos. For example, if your diet isn’t balanced you won’t be getting enough essential amino acids (EAAs). On the other hand, if you have a certain condition or disease your body also might be unable to produce enough NEAAs.
So, this is why many sleep aids contain certain aminos. The goal is to provide you with enough of certain ones to help relax your body and help you become a sleepyhead faster.
Top Amino Acids For Sleep
It’s important to note that Glutamine isn’t an EAA and is not used as a main sleep treatment. However, the “L” in this amino is related to the molecule structure. There’s also a “D” version of this one. The common uses of amino acids include appetite, healing, digestion, muscles, and nutrition.
How does it help with sleep? L-glutamine helps improve sleep quality due to how the chemical compound affects the human brain. It boosts alertness, focus, and moods. This amino acid also helps to boost a certain hormone that seems to cause sleep problems when you have low levels.
This amino acid is found in several kinds of food. They include leafy greens, eggs, beans, and dairy. You can also find dietary supplements that contain amino. If you’re experiencing lots of stress, then you should consider taking this amino acid to help you stay calm.
There are several over-the-counter and prescription sleep aids on the market with this amino acid. What’s it all about? It’s a chemical compound that helps with the body’s central nervous system (CNS). This helps the brain and body to “talk” to each other by sending messages via the spinal cord.
These amino acids for sleep can also provide various benefits like lowering anxiety and helping people feel calm and relaxed. These are all helpful when you want to get a good night’s sleep. GABA is probably the most-studied amino acid related to sleep quality. Studies show it can help you sleep faster and get more deep sleep.
Here’s another amino acid that might help you get a good night’s sleep. L-Theanine helps to make green tea a refreshing beverage. So, you can imagine how a dietary supplement can also help deal with sleep problems. This amino acid is believed to help reduce anxiety and improve sleep.
How to Get Better Quality Sleep
1. Avoid daytime naps
If you’re sleepy there’s nothing wrong with recharging your body with a cat nap. On the other hand, make sure not to nap too much in the daytime. This can prevent you from feeling sleepy at nighttime, which is a bad thing. As a general rule, just take a nap when you need it.
2. Do some breathing/relaxation exercises.
This will help you to relax by focusing on the basics. Take some deep breaths and mentally tell your body parts. Start with your head and work your way down to your toes. Another option is to tense your entire body for a few seconds then relax it.
3. Watch the midnight snacks
If you’re going to eat a snack before bedtime then try to consume it a few hours before bedtime. This will allow your body to digest it so your stomach won’t feel heavy when it’s bedtime. You should also go with a light snack for the same reason.
4. Drink some milk
You’ve probably heard of this one before, but it works. There’s some debate about whether you should use warm or cold milk. Studies show either can help you to calm down. Make sure not to drink too much. One glass of cow, goat, or soy milk should help you start counting sheep.
5. Follow a sleep schedule
One of the reasons you can’t fall asleep faster might be you’re going to sleep at different times. Our bodies have an internal clock, and they can get thrown off. You don’t have to go to sleep at the same time every evening. However, try to make it approximately the same time, so your body gets used to a regular bedtime.
6. Reduce room temperature
It’s helpful for hot/humid summer nights. The key is to find the sweet spot that won’t make you feel like an ice cube so you can doze off like amino acids for sleep.