So, you’ve tackled bath time, read “The Gruffalo” the required 12 times, negotiated and bribed them into bed, kissed goodnight to all of their 237 cuddly toys, tucked them snuggling into their duvet and quietly crept out the room. Collapsing, exhausted on the sofa, you hear the familiar call from your child’s bedroom – “Mummy, Daddy…I’m hungry”!
How your child can still have room for more food after the endless snacking throughout the day will remain a mystery, but growing bones need constant fuel, and bedtime snacks can be easy to make and healthy too.
Peanut butter on wholemeal bread
Choosing foods that are high in protein and fibre will help your child feel fuller for longer, whilst providing much needed nutrients whilst they sleep.
Hummus and carrot sticks
Again, hummus is a high protein and fibre food that will help aid your child’s sleep, plus it is so incredibly easy to make.
Yoghurt with orange slices, seeds and nuts
Food that is rich in calcium and magnesium can help with sleep, as these minerals calm your child’s nervous system and help them fall and stay asleep. Snacks such as yoghurt with oranges contain calcium, whilst adding some nuts or seeds to the bowl will help provide magnesium. You can also offer your child a cup of calcium-full warm milk to help fill them up and aid sleepiness.
Oatmeal with milk
Tryptophan, found in foods such as milk, eggs, oats, bananas and cheese, is an amino acid that is believed to induce sleep. Tryptophan triggers serotonin in the brain which helps your child feel sated, happy and sleepy – the perfect combination for a restful night’s sleep.
Kiwi and cherries in Greek yoghurt
Kiwi is believed to be linked to maintain longer periods of sleep due to the antioxidants that regulate the neurotransmitters controlling sleep. Likewise, cherries have the highest concentration of naturally occurring melatonin which also, rather handily, helps the body sleep.
Now, with your child full, satisfied and safely tucked up in bed, you can relax and enjoy a well-deserved glass of wine and the Game of Thrones box set that has been calling for you all evening.