Whilst researching for foods to help me sleep I was somewhat amazed to discover that oats are both good for sleep and for providing a good start to the day.
Oats are gluten free and contain another protein called avenin, which people like coeliacs can tolerate (so I read). To be on the safe side it is always advisable to buy gluten free oats.
Lets tackle breakfast first.
Oats are a low GI, complex carbohydrate which keep you fuller longer, balance your blood sugar levels and keep you going for a greater period of time. They also contain B vitamins are low in sodium and a good plant source of iron and potassium. It is also claimed they can help lower cholesterol.
Here is one of my favourite gluten free oat superfood breakfasts
Small handful gluten free oats
Dessertspoon ground flaxseeds, Maca root powder, lecithin (Superlec)
Walnuts, sunflower seeds
Teaspoon raw chocolate
Tablespoon soaked linseed (overnight) or chia (20 minutes)
Spoon in sheep’s milk greek style yoghurt (Sainsbury’s) or any other plain yoghurt that you can eat
Honey to taste
Topped with chopped fruit
Additionally add in any other healthy foods that you fancy.
And so to bed.
This is much simpler for me.
I have one to two gluten free oatcakes topped with almond butter.
This is where oats get even more interesting. They contain tryptophan which is a precursor for serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps the body regulate appetite, sleep patterns, and mood.
Not only that tryptophan is also found in almonds. Double sleepy delight!
I already knew that milk contained tryptophan, but as I am diary free hot milk at bedtime is not an option. However, hot oat milk with a little honey is perfect. My research also led me to discover that a little glucose tells your brain to turn off orexin, a neuropeptide that’s linked to linked to wakefulness and sleep.
AskDrSears.com (2006). Foods for sleep. http://www.askdrsears.com/html/4/T042400.asp.
Impact Lab. (2010). Top 10 foods for a good night’s sleep. http://www.impactlab.net/2007/01/28/top-10-foods-for-a-good-nights-sleep/.
Jacqui works as a writing and personal branding coach, helping others to get the words out of their heads, onto paper and out as self published books. She offers 1-2-1 coaching, workshops, book club mastermind groups and writing coaching holidays in Spain.