Sleeping Well in Orange County
I don’t know about you, but overly busy lives that induce insurmountable stress, financial worries, health issues, love & concern for our kids and grandkids, aging, and of course COVID-19….have all contributed to my sleeplessness. When I was younger and well into my 40’s, there was nothing that kept me from falling and staying asleep. A train could have run through the bedroom, and I wouldn’t have heard it.
Because of this, I’m always on the lookout for solutions to better sleep, and I ALWAYS look for healthy and natural solutions. What could be more natural to our system than food? Did you know there are many foods that can contribute to our peace of mind, well-being, and yes, even sleep? So, with this in mind, I’m going to start a Sunday series called Sleeping Well in Orange County. My hope is that reading this on Sunday, will help you prepare for your busy week ahead in a way that can contribute to your quality of life.
Of course, you don’t have to live, work, or play in Orange County to join along, but since this Lifestyle Mag is called My Local OC…I think the reasoning is clear. Each week I will post a food “do” and a “don’t” to help achieve better rest and sounder sleep. Please feel free to post your antidotes and comments.
REASONS FOR LACK OF SLEEP
While lack of exercise, caffeine or alcohol consumed too close to bedtime, your snoring partner, or all the “blue lights” in your bedroom can certainly contribute to lack of sleep, in this 10-part series, we will focus on the food choices we make that can either add or take away from a good night’s sleep. This week our “do” is Tarragon, and the “don’t” is yes, sorry… ice cream.
Sleep Well With Taragon
Tarragon: A perennial herb that comes from the sunflower family is not only widely used for its flavoring and fragrance, but for its medicinal qualities as well. It has a subtle taste and pairs well with fish, beef, chicken, asparagus, eggs, and soups. I especially like it in Bearnaise sauce which I use on Eggs Benedict instead of Hollandaise Sauce, and on salmon, filet mignon, and asparagus. Yumm!
Due to the fact that Tarragon contains antioxidant properties, supports digestion, and is a good source of potassium, it has long been used as a remedy for poor sleep quality. Studies show that foods containing potassium not only help to induce sleep, but help you enter into a deep sleep. So next time you’re at the grocery store, pick up some fresh or dried tarragon and add it to your favorite recipe.
Ice Cream: How many T.V. parody’s have we seen where the writer shows the main character sitting down with a pint of ice cream and a spoon in order to sooth a bad situation? And while this may make good television, and many of us can relate…it does not make for sound sleep. UGH! The main reason for this is its high level of sugar which spikes insulin levels; and high insulin levels have been shown to make it difficult to fall asleep. And to make matters worse, a lot of us choose to snack on ice cream late at night and just before bed. This increases the stress hormone – cortisol, which can also make it difficult to fall asleep.
Alternative to Ice Cream:
If the thought of not having your late-night ice cream fix, adds more stress and sleep deprivation than the ice cream itself…we have a solution! We found this one-ingredient ice cream that is smooth, delicious, and doesn’t even require an ice cream maker. And what is the one and only ingredient? Bananas! Bananas are high in potassium, which we learned helps us fall and stay asleep. Go ahead and add some tryptophan-containing peanut butter (we’ll cover this in another segment) for a delicious peanut butter & banana treat! Then snooze away.
What’s the take-away? Enjoy Tarragon any time of day or night. Eat ice cream sparingly, at least 3-4 hours before bedtime. That’s it for this week. Please feel free to comment on our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/mylocaloc or this blog page and See You Around The OC!
Click here for one ingredient ice cream recipe: https://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-creamy-ice-cream-with-just-one-ingredient-cooking-lessons-from-the-kitchn-93414
Photo credits: Eat This, Not That!