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The #1 Best Thing to Drink Before Bedtime, Says Dietitian

If you want to enjoy better rest and wake up refreshed tomorrow, here's what you should be eating tonight.
FACT CHECKED BY Olivia Tarantino

Everyone has been there: you spend the night tossing and turning, then wake up groggy the next morning due to the poor sleep you got the night prior. In fact, while the average adult should ideally get 7 or more hours of sleep per night, just 2 in 3 people actually get the amount of rest they need on a daily basis, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

RELATED: Popular Foods That Are Ruining Your Sleep, Says Science

Fortunately, there's a simple way to improve your sleep on a nightly basis, and it doesn't involve popping a pill or trying to exhaust yourself during the course of an already busy day. Instead, it's as simple as enjoying a tasty bedtime beverage—and better yet, now's the perfect time of year to add this delicious sleep-promoting treat to your regular routine.

"Drinking tart cherry juice before bedtime may help you get better sleep," explains Holly Klamer, MS, RDN, a registered dietitian nutritionist with My Crohn's and Colitis Team.

"The reason tart cherries may be helpful before bedtime is they provide melatonin, the hormone that helps regulate sleep and wake cycles. A 2012 study found drinking tart cherry juice for 7 days significantly improved sleep in subjects compared to those in the placebo group."

cherries in bowl
Shutterstock / Dejan82

However, if you don't love the idea of drinking a big glass of anything before bed (to avoid those mid-sleep runs to the bathroom), adding some fresh cherries to your diet may also do the trick. A cup of pitted cherries packs approximately 7% of your daily potassium, which may help benefit your sleep, as well.

According to a 2016 study published in the Journal of Hypertension, the severity of obstructive sleep apnea—which can cause a long list of health issues and may leave those with the condition feeling less than well-rested upon waking—may be linked to individuals' serum potassium levels, but supplementation with potassium or potassium-rich foods, like cherries, may help. So if you're looking for an easy way to improve your sleep tonight, these tasty fruits are anything but the pits.

For more genius ways to get a better night's rest, check out these 7 Healthy Diet Changes That Help You Sleep, and for the latest healthy living tips delivered to your inbox, sign up for our newsletter!

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Sarah Crow
Sarah Crow is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, where she focuses on celebrity news and health coverage. Read more
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