Banana Tea for Sleep: How Does It Help?
18th Dec 2020
If you’ve been looking for natural remedies to help insomnia, have you considered trying banana tea for sleep?
A banana may sound like an unlikely thing to make tea out of, but it’s said to have some amazing properties that are of huge benefit to health!
Bananas are widely available, so if you’re looking for a new elixir that may help with insomnia or disrupted rest, why not give it a try?
We recommend buying organic bananas if you can. If you don’t enjoy the flavor, be creative! You can add spices to make it more appealing, but it’s worth trying.
If it doesn’t help your sleep problems, at least you’ve still discovered a tasty new bedtime drink!
What Is Banana Tea?
Banana tea is a warm drink that’s made from steeping bananas in hot water for some time.
Bananas are rich in Vitamin B6, potassium, and magnesium, and contain nutrients that are water soluble when soaked in hot water.
To get the most out of your banana tea, it’s a good idea to steep it for as long as you can. The longer you leave it, the more nutrient-rich it will be.
When you make banana tea, tryptophan (an amino acid that helps the body produce melatonin and serotonin) is released. These are the sleep hormones that your body needs to start the sleep process.
Banana tea also contains dopamine and serotonin, which reduce stress and help the body relax. This is why it’s best to drink banana tea just before you go to bed.
The Healthy Benefits of Banana Tea
With bananas being rich in nutrients like manganese, vitamin C, potassium, copper, magnesium, and vitamin B6, it’s not hard to see why they have many health benefits!
By drinking a cup of banana tea daily, you could reap the following healthy rewards:
- Your digestive system may improve and become more regular.
- It could boost your immune system.
- Banana tea may moderate blood sugar levels.
- Your heart health may improve.
- You may find it easier to lose weight.
- Symptoms of insomnia may be eased.
- You could fall asleep easier at night.
Both the banana flesh and peel have benefits. You could use one or the other, or the whole banana when steeping your tea.
The banana has become known as the sports fruit! For years, sportsmen and recreational athletes would reach for a banana as a source of energy.
With high levels of potassium, magnesium and healthy sugars, they’ve been a favorite with runners and cyclists as they help reduce muscle cramps. Having a banana while you’re on the go is also a great way to replenish your energy levels.
Bananas contain tyrosine, which helps the brain produce chemicals called neurotransmitters, which include:
- Thyroid hormones
Tyrosine combined with the other nutrients and vitamins of the banana can help enhance an athlete’s focus and alertness, and help keep their motivation up.
It may be tempting to discard the peel, but they’re chock-full of healthy stuff too! Banana peels contain bioactive compounds, such as:
These provide antioxidants and “vaso-relaxing” effects. They may also help with lowering cholesterol and blood pressure, and reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke.
For many years banana tea has been used to boost immunity, and has been used as a remedy to alleviate:
The peels are rich in potassium, magnesium, and L-tryptophan, which converts to melatonin and serotonin in the body. These all work to relax the body and start the body’s sleep process.
How Good Is Banana Tea for Sleep?
Having banana tea before bed can help you get a better night's rest, as it's rich in magnesium and potassium, which are known for their muscle relaxing properties.
A USDA study showed that 58% of the participants, who suffered from insomnia, had low levels of magnesium.
Also, as we get older, our brain produces less melatonin and serotonin, which leads to us not being able to fall asleep, stay asleep or sleeping for fewer hours.
By incorporating banana tea into your nighttime routine, you’ll increase the amount of L-tryptophan, magnesium, and potassium levels in your body.
L-tryptophan helps produce sleep hormones (melatonin and serotonin), while magnesium and potassium help to relax the muscles. This can help you fall asleep and stay asleep for longer, facilitating a peaceful night’s rest.
Why Drink Banana Tea Instead of Eating a Banana?
You may wonder why you should go to all the effort of making tea when you could just chomp on a banana. Valid question!
Of course, you could eat a banana before sleeping. But when it comes to banana tea, the secret is that you’re getting all the nutrients of the peel along with the flesh. Most people won’t eat the peel!
Drinking banana tea is also lower in calories than eating one. If you’re following a calorie-controlled diet, this is invaluable.
How to Make Banana Tea
You can choose to make banana tea by only using the whole banana, or just the peel. Each has its own benefits and it’s up to you to choose which is better for you!
To make your banana tea, make sure you have:
- One medium-sized banana
- 500 to 700 ml of water
- A dash of cinnamon or honey
Here’s how you’d go about making your bedtime tea:
- Slice the ends of the banana off and cut the rest into three of four pieces
- Put the water into a pot and bring it to a boil
- Add the banana to the boiling water
- Reduce the heat and let it simmer for 5 to 10 minutes (the longer it steeps, the more nutritious it will be)
- Remove the banana tea from the stove and strain the banana water
- Add a dash of honey or a pinch of cinnamon for taste (this is optional)
Pour yourself a cup of banana tea and add the remaining liquid to a container that you can store in your fridge. You can probably get two cups of tea from one banana, but you wouldn’t need to drink more than one cup before bedtime.
Using the Full Banana
When you use the whole banana, you’ll be getting the best out of the fruit. You’ll get the best of the antioxidants from the peel, and the natural sweetness from the flesh of the banana.
This is the best way to do it! You’ll get the best of both worlds in one cup of tea.
Using Just The Banana Peel
If you’re worried about consuming the natural sugars before you go to bed because of your blood sugar levels, then you can make tea with only the peel.
You’d need to steep your tea for longer (15 to 30 minutes) when using only the peel. It may have a bitter taste to it, as it won’t get the natural sweetness from the flesh. But you’ll get all the benefits of the rich antioxidant levels of the peel.
Using Just The Banana Flesh
For some, the idea of using the peel is just not appealing.
If you prefer to make your banana tea without the peel and only use the flesh, you’ll still get the benefits of the high magnesium and potassium levels. However, you won’t get as much fiber or antioxidants as you would if you included the peel.
Using Dried Banana Peel
You can use dried or fresh banana peels to make the tea. If you choose dried, you would need to try and use the equivalent amount of dried peel in your tea as the weight of a fresh peel - it can be a little tricky!
To dry your banana peels, place them on a single layer tray in an oven at 170 degrees Fahrenheit. Leave them in the oven for 2 to 3 hours, turn them over, and put them back for another 2 to 3 hours.
You can also pop the peels into a dehydrator if you have one, at 155 degrees Fahrenheit for 6 to 8 hours.
For every banana peel, you should get about 3 tablespoons of dried peel, which could be used to make a single cup of tea.
If you’re not a fan of how banana tea tastes, you can always add a dash of almond milk, vanilla extract, cinnamon, or honey. This will also add some variety to your evening tea, which you can enjoy warm or cold. You can store any leftover tea in the fridge, but it should be used within 2 or 3 days.
If you’ve used the whole banana and you want to avoid wasting the boiled banana, you can always add it to your smoothie or oats in the morning, or make banana bread!
Trying banana tea for sleep is a good plan if you want a natural, tasty remedy for sleeplessness or restless sleep.
Keep in mind that it’s not a failsafe and won’t work for everyone! If it doesn’t improve your rest, at least you’ll still be getting a good dose of healthy stuff in a tasty cup of tea!