Getting a good night’s sleep is essential to good health but for many Americans it remains elusive. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that more than a third of U.S. adults are not getting enough sleep on a regular basis. But now there is a TikTok trick that’s circulating widely on social media claiming that a glass of tart cherry juice before bedtime helps you fall asleep faster.
Tart cherry juice is one of the best-known sleep aids, especially the juice made from Montmorency cherries. Research has found that it increases melatonin levels in the body and enhances sleep, so there may be some validity to the latest sleep hack. According to WebMD, cherry juice is high in calories so eating cherries instead of drinking their juice may be a healthier way of boosting melatonin levels.
Dr. Shelby Harris, a licensed clinical psychologist specializing in behavioral sleep medicine, says that melatonin is a natural hormone in the body that helps control sleep.
“The melatonin in tart cherry juice may help you get better sleep if you have the occasional bad night here and there, but it’s most likely not going to be the cure for chronic insomnia that a lot of people make it out to be,” she tells BuzzFeed.
Harris says that if you want to try drinking tart cherry juice to help you sleep, drink an eight-ounce glass before bed, or mix the concentrate with eight ounces of water. More is not better, she said. The best way to ensure a good night’s sleep is consistency.
“Going to bed and waking up at the same time every day is important to maintain your circadian rhythm and help you get better quality rest at night,” says Harris who is board-certified by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. “Try to keep as consistent a bed and wake time as possible, and don’t extend your wake time more than 90 minutes if necessary.”
Limit screen time before bed and avoid blue light exposure from cell phones, computers, tablets, and TV’s which can interfere with your circadian rhythm, making it difficult to fall asleep and worsening sleep quality.
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