In high school, I listened to my college friends tell me how much free time they had and how the college lifestyle is much better than high school. That being said, I expected to have more than enough hours in the day for sleep, and never expected to find myself so off my sleeping schedule. However, I was wrong.

As midterm season comes to a close, I feel like I am finally catching up on some much needed rest. However, I find myself tossing and turning in my bed almost every night because my sleeping schedule is so off due to the all-nighters I pull to cram for exams.

I didn’t need to do research to know that food does affect the body and that candy before bed is not the BEST idea. In fact, there are many foods that will unfortunately increase your insomnia. However, I did learn that there are a few types of food that help the body regulate its sleeping cycle.

1. Walnuts

Believe it or not, walnuts are a great source of tryptophan, an amino acid that helps make serotonin and melatonin. Both of these hormones assist your body with your sleep cycles. Additionally, walnuts are rich in the hormone, melatonin, which helps the body fall asleep faster.

2. Almonds

Is your issue not just falling asleep, but staying asleep? Almonds are the quick fix to your problem. The nuts are rich in magnesium, which is a mineral needed for quality sleep and has even been proven to assist in headaches.

When your body has low levels of magnesium, you may have a hard time staying asleep. Check out Blue Diamond Almonds for some fun, tasty flavors! 

3. Pretzels

Personally, pretzels are my FAVE. If you are looking to fall asleep quickly, pretzels are your answer. This snack has a high glycemic index, which means that after eating them, your blood sugar and insulin levels will rise, ultimately shortening the time it takes you to fall asleep.

My favorite type of pretzels are Snyder's of Hanover Gluten Free Pretzel Sticks because they are extra crispy.

4. Chamomile Tea

Obviously, the perfect midterm antidote, chamomile tea, will release all of your built up stress. Research shows that tea increases levels of glycine, which relaxes the muscles and nerves to act like a sedative for the body.

If chamomile isn't your favorite, honey-lemon tea has been proven to help with insomnia. Teavana has amazing, reasonably priced options that you can ship directly to your dorm.

5. Fish

Studies show that almost all types of fish, including salmon, halibut, and tuna, enhance vitamin B6 levels in humans. This vitamin is needed to make melatonin. So basically, a spicy tuna roll can help you sleep... If that doesn't convince you to order sushi tonight, I don't know what will!

Sleep is a vital part of one's health, and sleep deprivation can cause many long and short term health issues. It is safe to say that a lot of these have actually helped my irregular sleep patterns become normal again.

Next time you are looking for a good late night snack, be sure to try one of these for a better sleep!