Finals week for me has finally arrived. Thats what you get when graduate school goes year round. One of the hardest things with the insanity of finals week is that leading up to finals week it seems like everything is coming dueor you need to really start buckling down and studying for everything that you have been praocrastinating on all semester long. Which I am definitly guilty of. Because ofthis a lot of my schedule gets thrown out of wack no matter how hard I try to stick to it.
One of the biggest struggles is my sleep schedule. I end up staying up a lot later than I should and I still force myself to get up early. and still trying to get everything done in the day while adding studying on top of it ends up piling on a lot of stress by the end of the week. But this go around of testing I have been trying extra hard to not stress, study as I go and get enough sleep to actually function.
For an additional dose of help, I have been drinking this smoothie most nights before I go to bed. One of my favorite tricks that we have used in family for helping with sleep is a handful of walnuts and a cup of tart cherry juice. It is like the ultimate natural nyquil. However, I just havent been in to eating raw nuts like I usually am so I turned to the next best thing. Raw walnut butter. Together with some frozen Tart Cherries and some Ashwagandha Powder I have been having no troubles getting a full night of deep sleep.
While I was originally testing out this recipe, I did make one of the biggest amateur mistakes and drank it in the morning. I had tweaked the recipe one more time and wanted to give to make sure it was okay before I shared the recipe with all of you. But I obviously wasn’t even thinking about what this recipe was meant to do. If you ever want to see someone in true zombie mode, give them this in the morning. I had to fight so hard not to just fall asleep right at my desk. But that just goes to show how strong this combo can be.
A fair note that I should tell you all is ashwagandha can have a strong taste that can sometimes come off like a burnt flavor so if you are unsure how much of it you can handle, I would recommend adding only the 1/2 teaspoon into this recipe your first time and then upping the amount if need be. And on top of that, even though tart cherries may sound like you are going to end up with permanent pinched lemon face, this smoothie is actually fairly sweet, so worry not on the flavor. That being said, some nights I am craving somthing a little sweeter. as you all know by my insesent sweet tooth. So I will add a medjool date into the mix. This doesn’t change any of the effects the smoothie has but if you are like me and need that super sweet fix right before bed. I would highly suggest trying this out.
Nutritional information the combination of tart cherries and walnuts is one super-powered sleep aid. Together the two help the body to produce melatonin which can help deal with insomnia and aid the body’s natural sleep pattern. In addition, walnuts all on their own are extremely helpful for sleep due to their high concentration of omega-3 fats which have been shown to affect serotonin levels and tryptophan which is a strong natural tranquilizer which will improve sleep. Finally, to top it all off, Ashwagandha powder is proven to reduce neural excitability, which effects the brains reactiveness and tendency to worry or overthink. Ashwagandha also has been shown to help control the production of cortisol, which is produced in stressful situations.
BEDTIME CHERRY SMOOTHIE
Everybody needs a little helper every now an again and probably one of the most difficult ones to find is the one that can help you get to and keep you in dreamland. This combination of cherries, walnuts, spinach and a little ashwagandha powder makes for the ultimate kicker starter in calming down your mind and body and letting you get a deep, full nights rest that you need.
- 1 cup tart cherries (pitted)
- 1 banana
- 1 cup almond milk
- 2 tbsp walnut butter
- 1/2-1 tsp ashwagandha powder
- 1 handful spinach
Add all ingredients into a blender. Blend on high until well combined and smooth and enjoy ~
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