Healthy carbohydrates maximize the presence of tryptophan in the brain, so by default, people who eat a carbohydrate based diet of quality whole foods invariably are calm, rarely depressed and are typically able to sleep soundly.
In our tech-driven age we tend to have mental hyperactivity, where energy from excessive thought and worry races through the head, oftentimes causing our Qi energy and spirit to flow upward, an excess of these qualities can cause fever, headaches, irritability and insomnia.
Oats and Supporting Your Spleen (and Your Middle Burner)
Oats are sweet, not in a sugary kind of way but have a healthy sweetness as you eat and chew plain oats you notice the natural sweetness that begins to form. Oats fortify the spleen to help keep "your middle burner" warm (read more about our "Middle Burner" diet here). As a quick reminder: the spleen and stomach are a "yin-yang" pair. The stomach is the pot of the middle burner and the spleen is the fire under this pot.
Oatmeal packs plenty of calcium magnesium and potassium all of which help you fall asleep more quickly as a deficiency of magnesium may make it more difficult to stay asleep. Great oatmeal starts with plain rolled oats or steel cut oats and topped with wholesome ingredients.
Bananas are sweet and cooling while they clear heat and resolve toxins. They contain tryptophan meaning they'll give you a boost of serotonin and melatonin helping you get to sleep a little bit easier. They also contain 12% of your daily intake of magnesium which can help relax muscles and 10% of your daily intake of potassium which has a similar effect to magnesium and helps your body stay relaxed during sleep.
Don't Forget the Almonds
Almonds are sweet, containing tryptophan as a quarter of a cup will contain almost 50mg which will cause the release of serotonin in your body. They also contain magnesium which helps you sleep longer and more deeply. Additionally almonds contain calcium which helps your production of melatonin and regulates your body clock. Niacin which can regulate anxiety levels and protein which prevents your blood sugar levels from dipping too much.
Chia and flax seeds both contain omega-3 fatty acids, these essential fatty acids can contribute to healthy brain function.
Simple Healthy Oats
- ½ cup Rolled Oats
- 1 cup water
- Dash Salt
- 1 Tablespoon Flax Seed
- 1 Tablespoon Chia Seed
- 1 Tablespoon Sliced Almonds
- 1 Teaspoon Blackstrap Molasses
- Banana to taste
- Blueberry to taste
- Blackberry to taste
You are free to flavor your oatmeal as you wish, but please take the time to cook your own oats and never get it out of a package filled with sugar. Make sure you have the right ratio of oats to liquid. A simple 2-to-1 ratio of two parts water or milk in combination with one cup rolled oats is the way to go. Bring liquid to a boil, add your oats, bring back to a simmer stirring frequently until you reach the desired texture and consistency. Remove from heat and stir in the molasses, flax and chia seeds. Top with blueberries, blackberries, banana and sliced almonds.
Blackstrap molasses has a wonderful robust flavor and has the lowest sugar content of any sugar cane product, it is unlike refined sugar which has 0 nutritional value. Blackstrap molasses contains vital vitamins and minerals such as iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, vitamin B6 and selenium.
Quick-cooking oats have been precooked then dried and rolled. They are sometimes labeled as instant oats, do not use these!
Rolled oats or old fashioned oats have been steamed and then rolled.
Steel cut oats are toasted and cut oat groats-the oat kernel that has been removed from the husk are sometimes labeled Irish oatmeal. These typically require more liquid and a longer cooking time of about 20 to 30 minutes .