One of the oldest remedies for falling asleep: drinking warm milk at night before bed makes you sleep faster. Does Warm Milk Help with Sleep Faster at Night? Are there any health benefits? Or is it just an old wives’ tale?
Today I’m going to share my experience of how drinking warm milk help with sleep at night and the surprising side effect I didn’t anticipate.
Does Warm Milk Help with Sleep at Night- Hot Milk Help You Sleep Faster
Throughout my life so far, I have tried drinking warm milk before bed off and on, but I never stuck to it as an actual routine.
A few months ago, I decided to stick to a routine of drinking warm milk every night within one hour of going to bed, so that I could actually figure out does warm milk help with sleep at night but this only lasted for two weeks, and you’ll see why I had to stop later on.
But first, let’s talk about why does milk help you sleep, why drinking warm milk is supposed to help you fall asleep.
Why does milk help you sleep at Night?
Milk contains compounds such as melatonin and tryptophan which are commonly known as sleep-inducing compounds. Many people take melatonin tablets to help them fall asleep, and we’ve all heard that tryptophan is the reason we feel sleepy after eating our Thanksgiving turkey.
But while both these compounds are found in milk, they’re present regardless, meaning it doesn’t matter whether you drink your milk warm or cold.
The other thing to understand is that melatonin and tryptophan are present in such small amounts in milk that it likely has no effect on helping you sleep.
So then why do we typically hear that drinking warm milk is supposed to help us sleep or does warm milk help you with sleep faster at night?
It’s probably the simple fact that drinking something warm feels soothing, and that helps us relax and have a better chance of falling asleep.
When I started drinking warm milk diligently, I didn’t try this as an exact science.
I didn’t research what temperature the milk needed to be, or how much to drink, or anything like that; I wanted to keep it as simple as possible.
All I did was pour milk into a regular-sized coffee mug about three-quarters of the way full and put it in the microwave for twenty seconds at 60% power.
That would usually bring the milk to just above lukewarm.
Of course this is what worked for my microwave, so if you decide to try this you may need to adjust accordingly.
And in case you’re wondering, I was using skim milk, but this can obviously be done with any fat-level milk you want.
I would also add a little bit of honey to my warm milk, but this is optional and just something I felt like doing; in other words, I saw no research that suggested I add honey.
What I immediately began noticing is that within about thirty minutes of getting into bed, I would feel absolutely exhausted, like I just ran a marathon I never trained for and needed to collapse exhausted.
To me, that seemed like a great sign because I usually never feel that tired when I’m trying to fall asleep. And luckily, this extreme feeling of exhaustion did make me fall asleep quickly.
And even better, I don’t remember waking up during the night, which to me is incredible since I usually wake up at least four times during the night.
I thought for sure that drinking warm milk really was the cure, but I was wrong.
While it did help me fall asleep quickly, the quality of my sleep decreased, which seems unusual since I was sleeping straight through the night.
The problem was that I was waking up the next morning feeling even more exhausted than when I fell asleep.
I would wake up feeling like I couldn’t move, my eyes were extremely heavy, my breathing felt shallow, and it felt like something very heavy had been sitting on my chest all night.
Compared to how tired I usually feel when I wake up, this was a kind of tired that lingered around for several hours and really did make my day more difficult.
I can’t explain why I would wake up feeling so exhausted. Maybe I never reached REM sleep, may I was waking up in the middle of being in REM sleep, but waking up with this increased exhaustion happened consistently every single day I was drinking warm milk before bed.
After two weeks of this I had to stop, because sleeping straight through the night wasn’t worth waking up feeling absolutely terrible.
“Does Warm Hot Milk Help You with Sleep Faster at Night” Work?
Well on the one hand, the answer to the question: “Does Warm Milk Help You Sleep Faster at Night” yes, it did help me fall asleep or makes you sleepy quicker and stay asleep.
Of course there’s a good chance this was a placebo and nothing scientific was actually at work, but I had consistent results of drinking hot warm milk with my sleep cycle.
The downside was that I woke up feeling worse than ever, and this too was a consistent result. I decided that waking up feeling terrible, but falling asleep faster and staying asleep, is not the kind of trade-off I’m looking for.
So there you go, that’s my personal experience of drinking warm milk.
So have you tried this experiment of “Does Warm milk help with sleep faster at night”? Are you going to try it? And what kind of results do you get? Let me know in the comments below.
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