The diet you follow has a significant impact on your bodily functions including sleep. The impact of your plant-based diet on sleep depends on what foods you have added to it.
Vegetarianism and veganism are two popular diets that focus on plant foods. Vegetarians avoid eating animal foods obtained by killing animals while vegans follow an even stricter diet by avoiding foods that were obtained by harming animals in any way.
Let us look into the positive effects of vegan and vegetarian diets on sleep.
What Are The Sleep-Promoting Elements In Vegan And Vegetarian Diets?
Here are some of the sleep-promoting elements in vegan and vegetarian diets.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant. This vitamin supports cell functions and protects cells from damage. Vitamin E can promote healthy brain function with its protective effect. Some studies have suggested that vitamin E may offer protection against memory impairment caused by sleep loss. Our brain processes our memories and recent learning when we sleep, and lack of sleep can adversely affect our ability to store memories and recall them later.
Higher vitamin E levels can be helpful in improving nighttime breathing and the sleep quality of people with sleep apnea.
Plant foods like almonds, hazelnuts, sunflower seeds, tomatoes, corn, and broccoli are rich sources of vitamin E.
Vitamin C In Plenty
Vitamin C is another vitamin that is popular for its antioxidant properties. The benefits offered by vitamin C could also affect our sleep.
From what is known from research, vitamin C can protect the brain against the memory losses induced by sleep deprivation. Vitamin C can also help improve the symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea when used alone or in conjunction with other antioxidants.
Vitamin B6 promotes the production of melatonin and serotonin in our body, two hormones that are powerful enough to influence our sleeping patterns. Vitamin B6 deficiency is associated with symptoms of insomnia and depression. In studies involving older adults, it has been found that vitamin B6 is linked to a lower risk of depression.
Soy is an important food in many plant-based diets and it is a rich source of protein. Studies have discovered an association of soy with improved sleep quality. Eating soy regularly reduces the risk of daytime sleep and long sleep duration.
If you are bothered by sleep issues, making relevant changes in your diet could help improve them.