27/07/2016 10:03 BST | Updated 28/12/2017 07:59 GMT

Eight Natural Foods that Help with Sleep

These foods are high in the two important minerals that aid the body with sleep; potassium and magnesium. Both of these elements help the body to produce melatonin, which is a hormone that tells our body it is nighttime and it's time to go to sleep. And melatonin is not only produced in the pineal gland--it is also naturally present in edible plants.

I do not disregard taking medicine, however we can avoid taking some pharmaceutical drugs and opt for these natural options that provide our bodies with the essential vitamins we need on a daily basis.

If you are having issues sleeping, I would recommend removing the common causes to sleep problems:

• Gluten (especially from white flour)

• Refined White Sugar

• Soy (non-organic)

• Dairy

• Chemicals include: food dye, preservatives, additives, colorings, flavorings

• Genetically modified ingredients

• Mental imbalance including: stress, overthinking, overworking, anxiety

People who tend to eat worse often have a hard time getting sufficient sleep at night. Stress can also cause a hormone imbalance in our body. We know that these things can affect our health in a negative way and cause sleeping issues.

Incorporate these natural foods instead:

1. Cherries

Eat cherries or drink cherry juice. Cherries are naturally high in melatonin, the hormone that makes us sleepy. Cherries make the best late night snack instead of sugary gluten options.

2. Banana

Eat bananas, which are high in magnesium and potassium the two minerals that create muscle relaxation.

3. Fish

Fish is rich in tryptophan a natural sedative.

4. Warm Almond Milk or TigerNut Milk

Just like when we were children we often found comfort in drinking warm milk before bed. Heating some almond milk or tigernut milk on the stove top before bed can relax our nervous system to prepare for a calm sleep. Plus almonds and tigernuts are full of antioxidants and other health benefits.

5. Spinach

Spinach is also rich in potassium and magnesium.

6. Chickpeas

Chickpeas are a great whole food that are high in protein and are known as a good brain food. They can be helpful to relax the brain in the evening and prepare to unwind for a deep sleep. Make a hummus by blending some chickpeas with olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and real salt.

7. Chamomile tea

People know chamomile as a calming tea to help with an upset stomach or to just sedate the body. You can buy chamomile tea bags from the store, or buy fresh/dried flowers and boil it in water.

8. Ginger tea

Ginger tea is a natural pain reliever and reduces inflammation in the body, which is why it can be incredibly helpful to drink before bedtime. You can purchase ginger tea bags in the store or cut up ginger whole root and boil it for 10 minutes. You can even add a dash of turmeric.

One way to get five of these elements in one shot is to have it as a smoothie in the morning, or for lunch and dinner. Having it later in the day will prepare the body for a good sleep. It could even be a dessert option.

Here is the recipe,

Sleeping Smoothie

Serves 1

Total time: 5 minutes

1½ cup Almond Milk or TigerNut Milk

2 cups spinach

2 bananas

1 cup cherries, pitted

1 thumb size peace of ginger root

Directions: Add all ingredients to a blender and mix until smooth.

Tip: Freeze the bananas for a nice chilled refreshing smoothie.

Calories: 230 | Total Fat: 10g | Carbohydrate: 35g | Dietary Fiber: 6g | Protein: 7g

This recipe is part of © 2016 The Earth Diet, Inc. ™ All Rights Reserved

Other holistic ways to ensure a better sleep include:

• Meditation. Create peace of mind and clear your mind

• Ensure you have a balance of being in nature and grounding. Walk barefoot especially after a long day in the office.

• Purpose. Make sure you a living a truthful life with integrity and be proud of who you are and what you are doing.

• Detox the stress and drama out of your life.

• Let go of the past and any baggage you might have. Forgive yourself each night before bed.

• Allow yourself to relax, give yourself permission to get a nourishing sleep. Train your brain to know that you need sufficient sleep in life so you can recharge.

• Sweat it out in an infrared sauna.

• Yoga and stretching.

• Take deep breaths of fresh oxygen, especially in nature.

This article is dedicated to Ken Fisher.