Whoever said, “you snooze, you lose” clearly never suffered from insomnia. From tossing and turning to waking up in the middle of the night, being tired without being able to sleep is one of the most frustrating feelings everrr.
Before relying on the Ambiens or Lunestas of the world, why not try some tastier natural sleep aid options first? Next time you’re struggling to catch those zzzs, down one of these 19 nightcaps. Whether it's the ingredients that help you unwind or more of a soothing ritual effect, you'll wake up feeling like a winner.
Unlike 99.9 percent of pumpkin-spiced beverages in the world, this one actually has pumpkin in it—win! A few tablespoons of the puréed veggie go into the lightly sweetened, cinnamon-dusted steamer, which is also caffeine-free so that you’re not bouncing off the walls at midnight.
There’s a reason medicinal mushrooms are trending this year: From inflammation to insomnia, they're supposed to help alleviate it all. But instead of stirring your reishi powder into your morning coffee like most people, use it in this chocolaty concoction. Pro tip: Cacao powder contains trace amounts of caffeine (only 12 milligrams, whereas a cup of coffee has 150 milligrams) so if you're super sensitive to the stuff, you may want to pass on this one or just enjoy it earlier in the day for a little relaxation.
If you haven’t yet hopped on board the turmeric train, your sleep-deprived state might give you a good reason to start (with this dairy-free drink). Thanks to a combination of anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties (read: it's known to protect nerve cells from damage), it’s been shown to help with anxiety and promote better sleep. This is just further proof that the golden root is worthy of its status as one of the biggest health trends of the year.
If your stubborn sleep cycles are resistant even to chamomile tea, it might be time for an upgrade. Supplement your teabags with a pinch of turmeric and a cupful of sleep-promoting tart cherry juice for a triple-threat solution to insomnia.
If you’re the evening-workout type, end your night with a warm cup of this. Not only do the vanilla, honey, and lavender make it super soothing, but the serotonin and healthy fats in the walnuts simultaneously replenish tired muscles while encouraging better sleep.
Put away the sleeping pills and go the Ayurvedic route to say goodbye to restless nights. According to the traditional medicine practice, herbs like saffron can do wonders for anxiety, depression, and sleeplessness. Add a few strands to this subtly spiced almond milk drink and feel like a whole new person in the morning.
Carbs before bed have been viewed as a blanket no-no, but there might be exceptions since studies find that complex carbs might actually improve sleep quality. So while you may not want to make a habit out of midnight pizza binges, try this smoothie instead, which blends a serving of whole-grain, serotonin-rich oats into the banana-cherry-chamomile mixture.
A hot, chocolaty cup of cocoa is comforting enough, but a few extra ingredients make it over-the-top cozy. With soothing peppermint oil, healthy fats from the cashew butter, and zero added sugar, it sets you up for a relaxing treat followed by an uninterrupted night of sweet dreams.
Actual snickerdoodles before bed may give you a counterproductive sugar high, but this smoothie takes care of cookie cravings without killing your REM cycle. Not only are dates and bananas its only sources of sweetness, but it’s also made with chickpeas, which are high in the B6 vitamins that produce sleep-regulating serotonin.
A hot toddy is usually sipped as a boozy cold-buster. Here, though, the squeeze of turmeric paste alongside the brandy makes this spicy cocktail as powerful for fighting insomnia as it is for boosting immunity.
Blueberries are regular guests at breakfast, but their high concentration of sleep-aiding polyphenols makes them a great option for a bedtime snack, especially when accompanied by other sleep-promoting ingredients like avocado, lavender, and bananas. Plus, since this smoothie is practically a salad, it’s also a pretty tasty way to get in some fiber if you’re lacking in that department.
Sip this smoothie to sleep better... and smile more. Thanks to avocado and banana, both rich in anxiety-reducing, mood-elevating serotonin, this drink is a perfect way to end the day on a happy note.
It may not come with a facial or a massage, but this chamomile, lavender, peppermint, and sage infusion can get you to spa-level bliss all on its own. It’s so cleansing, soothing, and relaxing, you may not even finish a full glass before dozing off. Homemade face masks are optional but recommended.
If you’re having trouble getting some shut-eye, one reason might be a deficiency in magnesium, which helps regulate all sorts of bodily functions, including the sleep cycle. Increase your levels with this refreshing, three-ingredient shake, which includes banana and almond butter—both delicious sources of the mineral.
Here’s a tea you won’t find at your corner Starbucks. Made with just banana and cinnamon, it may not be conventional, but the magnesium in the fruit and the stress-reducing effects of the spice make this a powerful antidote to restlessness.
Another option for an evening exerciser, this cool-down smoothie does double duty as a post-workout snack and a pre-bedtime treat. People are all sorts of doubtful about dairy these days, but the casein protein found in milk products is actually optimal for helping muscle recovery when taken overnight. Scoop a spoonful of it into the milk, yogurt, and banana mixture so that you’re getting stronger, and not just in your dreams.
As if apple cider vinegar hadn’t already established itself as practically a miracle cure for tons of ailments, it strikes again in this tea. Most people are used to drinking the stuff first thing in the morning, but this blogger makes a solid case for the calming effects of ACV’s amino acids. Drink up.