Tired and stressed? Join the club. Forty percent of Americans report having some symptoms of insomnia within a given year, according to the National Sleep Foundation. And it doesn't matter whether your shut-eye is being hampered by a time change, a stressful job or some other problem in your life, being tired sucks, and it can lead to serious health problems, including heart disease and depression. But before you reach for the latest prescription drug, reach for your fork—or, at the very least, your shopping list. Revamping your diet can go a long way towards improving your sleep quality, provided you opt for foods rich in the right sleep-inducing ingredients.
In one small study, participants drank eight ounces of tart cherry juice in the morning, and another eight ounces in the evening, for two weeks and reported better sleeping habits. Why does it work? All varieties of cherries are naturally high in melatonin, a hormone that makes you sleepy. Eat a cup of whole cherries as a late-night snack if you’d rather not drink juice.