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5 Vitamins To Boost Sleep

Although it’s your body’s “sleep hormone”, melatonin isn’t the only thing that impacts your sleep.

Sleep is one of many cycles that your body maintains, which requires a balance of healthy habits and nutrients in order to support efficiently. Some vitamin deficiencies have been associated with sleep disorders like sleep apnea and others, which could impact your ability to sleep. 

These are five vitamins that can play a positive role in impacting your sleep quality.

As a general warning, most people get enough vitamins through the food they eat. Even vitamins should not be taken at inappropriately high doses, as it can be unsafe. Please consult your physician if you have concerns about taking certain supplements, including melatonin. 


Magnesium

Magnesium was associated with improvement in overall sleep quality in a study with insomnia patients. In that study, magnesium supplementation had a positive correlation with improved sleep efficiency, sleep time, sleep latency, and early morning awakening. 

Another study indicated a beneficial effect with several months supplementation of a magnesium- melatonin-vitamin B complex in the treatment of insomnia. 

Magnesium is crucial for your overall health, playing a key role in supporting muscle and nerve functions, blood pressure, bone health, and even energy production. Magnesium supplementation may even help alleviate the severity of PMS symptoms.


Good sources of magnesium

  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Chard
  • Dried beans and legumes, such as soybeans and lentils
  • Nuts such as almonds and cashews

Risks of taking too much magnesium supplements

Taking large doses of magnesium can be potentially unsafe if it builds up in the body. Taking magnesium supplements in excess can cause side effects such as:

  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Cramps
  • Irregular heartbeat 
  • Low blood pressure


Vitamin B6 and B12

In addition to magnesium, the same study indicated a beneficial effect with several months supplementation of a magnesium- melatonin-vitamin B complex in the treatment of insomnia.

A separate study found that vitamin B12 had a responsive effect when used to treat the sleep-wake schedule disorders in two patients

However another study also correlated B12 supplementation with reduced sleep duration

Vitamin B6 is essential for your body to use the sugars, fats, and proteins it takes in. It also supports development in your brain, nerves, and other organs. Vitamin B12 is similarly important for brain and nerve function. 


Good sources of B6

  • Chickpeas
  • Fish such as salmon and tuna 
  • Beef liver
  • Eggs
  • Potatoes

Good sources of B12

  • Fish such as salmon and tuna 
  • Beef liver
  • Clam
  • Eggs

Risks of taking too much vitamin B supplements

Taking magnesium supplements in excess can cause side effects such as:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Insomnia 
  • Headache or dizziness 


Vitamin D

Studies of vitamin D’s effect on sleep have found that vitamin D deficiency has been associated with some sleep disorders, and that vitamin D plays some role in the regulation of sleep.

Another study found that vitamin D supplementation was correlated with improved sleep quality, reduced sleep latency, increased sleep duration in people with sleep disorders.

However it should be noted that other studies have found that higher levels of vitamin D supplementation were possibly associated with lower levels of melatonin, although that study focused on patients with multiple sclerosis. 

Vitamin D is critical for bone health, helping your body absorb calcium and phosphorus to help rebuild bone tissue. More research indicates vitamin D’s importance in managing your overall health, from inflammation to your immune health.


Good sources of vitamin D

Few foods have vitamin D unless they have been fortified, but sunlight is a major source of this vitamin. Other sources also include 

  • Salmon
  • Mackerel 
  • Fortified yogurt or dairy
  • Mushrooms

Risks of taking too much vitamin D supplements

Vitamin D makes it easier for your body to absorb calcium. People who are at greater risk of developing kidney stones should ask their physician about taking vitamin D. Taking vitamin D supplements in excess can cause side effects such as:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Insomnia 
  • Elevated calcium levels


Calcium

In studies, calcium deficiency was associated with those who had greater difficulty sleeping and also non-restorative sleep.  

Calcium is essential for building and maintaining strong bones and rebuilding bone tissue. In addition to bone health, calcium also plays a role in supporting heart health and helping your muscles contract and regulating your nerve functions.  


Good sources of calcium 

  • Sesame seeds
  • Dairy like cheese and milk
  • Almonds
  • Sardines
  • Collard greens and spinach 

Risks of taking too much calcium supplements

Taking calcium supplements in excess can cause side effects such as:

  • Bloating
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Increased likelihood of developing kidney stones 


Zinc

Zinc supplementation was found to increase quality of sleep, and it may be involved in the regulation of the sleep-wake cycle. 

Zinc is essential to cell growth and your immune system. Zinc helps with healing, with your thyroid health, and also in building proteins. Zinc supplementation is even associated with antiviral immunity against certain viruses.

 

Good sources of zinc 

  • Oyster
  • Red meat 
  • Crab and lobster
  • Baked beans and chickpeas

Risks of taking too much zinc supplements

Taking zinc supplements in excess can cause side effects such as:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach pains
  • Loss of appetite 


Could I take all these vitamins?

While you could take these vitamins regularly, you might not need to unless you have a vitamin deficiency. Most of these vitamins can be found in sufficient amounts through the food we eat.

Although these vitamins can support your overall health and boost sleep that, it is possible to experience negative side effects from taking too much.

Consult your physician about discontinuing use if you experience any side effects.