Pictures: Instagram (sleep)
Insomnia is a real affliction affecting millions of us everyday, with the average person in the UK losing a whole night's worth of sleep every week.

But experts say you could improve your chances of getting a decent night's shut-eye by eating the right foods.

National Geographic Food has revealed in its new magazine the five foods everyone should eat regularly to put an end to insomnia. And they include the divisive yeast extract, Marmite. 

Spicy or fatty foods, caffeine, booze: all can irritate our digestive system, prevent deep sleep or simply take a long time to digest.  But cutting back on, or at the very least banishing these dietary villains to lunchtime, begs an obvious question: what to replace them with?

Foods containing tryptophan found in most protein-rich produce (milk, meat, eggs, fish and veggies) are great for a start. 

This essential amino acid aids the release of sleep-inducing hormone melatonin. 

It’s also in cheese, but don’t be tempted to reach for the crackers before bed — it also contains the amino acid tyramine, which, though not proven to give you nightmares, as the old wives’ tale suggests, makes the brain feel more alert.

National Geographic Food names five foods you wouldn’t think of to eat that can boost your chances of getting a great night’s sleep.

MARMITE

The black stuff is rich in magnesium, which calms the nerves, relaxing muscles and improving our slumber.
Picture: Instagram (marmite)
TURKEY

Don’t wait till Christmas — turkey is the lean meat that can help you slip into a successful slumber, thanks to its high levels of tryptophan.

BANANAS

Packed with muscle relaxants magnesium, potassium, tryptophan and vitamin B, it’s no wonder bananas have been touted as a natural sleeping pill.
Picture: Instagram (kolokoala)

ALMONDS

Ticking the tryptophan box once again, these nuts also deliver a hearty dose of healthy fats and magnesium.
Picture: Instagram (lukebradleey)
OATS

As well as being full of vitamins, minerals and amino acids, these wholesome flakes assist the body in producing the hormone melatonin, which causes drowsiness. 

Daily Mail