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Which juices are best at night?

Drinking juice before bed can be a great way to promote sleep and overall health. The key is choosing juices high in certain vitamins, minerals, and compounds that have calming or sleep-boosting effects. However, drinking too much juice before bed can also lead to disrupted sleep due to factors like excess sugar. This article explores the best and worst juices to drink before bedtime.

The Benefits of Drinking Juice at Night

There are several reasons why having a small glass of juice before bed may be beneficial:

  • Provides hydration – Staying hydrated is key for proper sleep.
  • Boosts nutrient intake – Juices can provide important vitamins and minerals that may be lacking from your diet.
  • Promotes relaxation – Some juices contain compounds that have natural sedative or anxiety-reducing effects.
  • Lowers stress hormones – The nutrients in juice may help lower levels of cortisol and adrenaline, hormones activated by stress.
  • Stabilizes blood sugar – Having a small glass of juice may prevent blood sugar crashes that can disrupt sleep.

Best Juices for Sleep

The juices that are most beneficial to drink before bed are those that are high in sleep-promoting nutrients and compounds. Here are some of the top juices to consider:

Tart Cherry Juice

Tart cherry juice is naturally high in melatonin, a hormone that regulates the sleep-wake cycle. Studies show drinking tart cherry juice can improve sleep duration and quality in adults with insomnia (1).

Chamomile Tea

Chamomile contains apigenin, an antioxidant that binds to certain receptors in the brain that may promote sleepiness and reduce insomnia (2). Drinking chamomile tea before bed helps initiate a sense of calm.

Passionflower Juice

Animal and human research demonstrates that passionflower acts as a mild sedative, increases sleep time, and improves sleep quality (3). It’s commonly used as a natural sleep aid.

Tart Montmorency Cherry Juice

Like tart cherry juice, tart Montmorency cherry juice contains high levels of melatonin. One study found that drinking Montmorency cherry juice led to significant increases in sleep time for older adults with insomnia (4).

Orange Juice

Orange juice contains the sleep-promoting mineral magnesium. One 8 ounce (240 ml) glass provides around 10% of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for magnesium (5).

Banana and Walnut Milk

Bananas are a good source of magnesium and potassium, two minerals that help induce relaxation. Walnuts contain melatonin. Blending walnuts and banana into milk can make for a delicious, sleep-promoting nighttime beverage.

Valerian Root Tea

Valerian is an herb that has been used for centuries to treat sleep issues. Multiple studies confirm valerian reduces the time needed to fall asleep and improves sleep quality, especially in people with insomnia (6).

Grape and Tart Cherry Juice Blend

For a double dose of melatonin, try mixing together grape and tart cherry juice. Grapes contain melatonin in their skins and seeds. Combining grapes with tart cherry juice can be a tasty way to get sleep-promoting compounds.

Worst Juices for Sleep

On the other hand, some juices may impair your ability to fall asleep or decrease sleep quality when consumed close to bedtime. Juices to avoid before bed include:

Citrus Juices

Citrus juices like orange, grapefruit, or lemon juices are very high in vitamin C. Consuming too much vitamin C near bedtime can increase sleep disruptions (7). Keep citrus juices to a minimum as part of your bedtime routine.

Coffee and Energy Drinks

Caffeinated beverages like coffee, energy drinks, or even green tea can make it difficult to fall asleep. Caffeine is a stimulant that can impair sleep quality and duration (8).

Sugary Juices

Consuming a lot of sugar too close to bed can lead to poor sleep. Sugary juices like apple, grape, or fruit punch flood your system with sugar, which can cause insomnia and sleep disruptions (9).

Vegetable Juices

Vegetable juices like tomato, carrot, or green juices often have a high water content. Drinking lots of fluid too close to bed may increase nighttime trips to the bathroom, disrupting sleep (10).

Alcoholic Drinks

Beverages with alcohol like wine, beer, and mixed drinks can make you fall asleep faster. However, alcohol reduces rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which is important for memory and learning (11).

Tips for Drinking Juice at Night

Follow these tips to get the most sleep benefits from drinking juice at night:

  • Consume juices 1-2 hours before bed – This gives your body time to digest.
  • Drink a small glass – Around 6-8 ounces (180-240 ml) is sufficient.
  • Avoid excessive sugar and caffeine – This can impair sleep quality.
  • Pair juices with a small carb snack – This prevents blood sugar crashes.
  • Stick to a routine – Drink the same juices at the same time each night.
  • Avoid drinking too close to bed – To minimize bathroom trips.
  • Consider your sleep needs – Those with insomnia or sleep issues may benefit most.

The Best Juice Combinations for Sleep

You can mix and match different juices with sleep-promoting compounds to come up with delicious juice blends perfect for drinking before bed. Here are some tasty combinations to try:

Juice Combination Sleep-Promoting Compounds
Tart cherry juice and chamomile tea Melatonin and apigenin
Banana, walnut, and cinnamon milk Melatonin and magnesium
Orange, grape, and tart cherry juice Magnesium and melatonin
Passionflower tea with lemon balm Apigenin and lavender oil
Valerian root tea with honey Valerenic acid

Blend one part tart cherry or grape juice with two parts chamomile tea. The melatonin in the cherry juice along with the apigenin in the chamomile tea can help relax your body and mind before bed.

For a creamy, dreamy nighttime milk blend, process banana, walnuts, cinnamon, and milk of your choice in a high-speed blender. Bananas provide magnesium and walnuts supply melatonin to promote sleep.

With its combination of magnesium from the orange juice and melatonin from cherry and grape juice, this triple berry juice is both delicious and sleep-inducing.

The apigenin in passionflower pairs wonderfully with the additional calming benefits from lemon balm. This herbal tea is soothing and anxiety-reducing.

Valerian root is known for its sedative effects. When blended with sweet honey, this tea can help induce drowsiness and high quality sleep.

Conclusion

Drinking certain juices in moderation as part of your nighttime routine can help improve sleep quality and duration. Focus on juices with compounds like melatonin, magnesium, and apigenin. Limit juices high in caffeine, alcohol, citrus, sugar, and fluids. Pay attention to how different juices affect your sleep so you can find the best options for your body.

With the wide range of juices and juice combinations available, you can experiment to discover the perfect before bed beverages that will help you fall asleep faster, sleep more soundly, and wake up feeling refreshed.