Why Does Warm Milk Help You Sleep? The Facts You Need To Know!

Are you among those individuals who struggle a lot when it comes to sleeping at night? Or do you find yourself spending hours awake and staring at the clock? Perhaps, you belong to those people who couldn’t easily sleep at night, and there could be a reason behind that. The sleepless night might be a nightmare for some, so finding the best way to conquer the issue matters a lot. Good to know that with just a glass of warm milk, you might be able to sleep at night. But, why does warm milk help you sleep?

Why Does Warm Milk Help You Sleep

Why Does Warm Milk Help You Sleep

We will answer that question later as you read through this post. For the majority, it is considered as a tested and tried method that could be used to help deal with sleepless nights. Here we go!

Why Does Warm Milk Help You Sleep?

You might doubt a lot whether warm milk can really make you sleep at night, am I right? But how true is this? Well, apparently, it could be an urban legend or either legitimately true!

So, what is the scientific basis behind this?

Well, the science behind the said belief about this warm beverage that will help you sleep is mostly psychological. However, that doesn’t make it any less valid. Indeed, the brain is a potent tool so even if something only exists in your head, that doesn’t make it any less real too.

For those people who grew up with those parents who provided them with grade warm milk before sleeping, this is considered as a strong signaler which means it’s time to go to bed. Through following the said routine, you will become sleepy on auto-pilot.

You will be drowsy not because of the signaling effects. The act of stopping and doing something that will make you relaxed at the end of the day might help the brain wind down and then prepare for bed. It would make sure that it is easier to fall asleep right after drinking a warm and soothing beverage while you lounge on the sofa.

Therefore, warm milk could really help in making you fall asleep, and that is because of ingesting the tryptophan. The body would speed up the melatonin production from its pineal gland. The body will produce more melatonin at night since our body is ready to sleep.

However, some people are struggling to sleep at night because of low melatonin production. Yet, by drinking a warm cup of milk, you could encourage the body to produce the sleeping hormone and lets you fall asleep.

But What Is Tryptophan?

Have you heard the word tryptophan? Don’t think as if it is about eating to a metric ton of turkey on Thanksgiving and sleeping immediately. So, what it is exactly? Simply said, it is the essential amino acid which we need to have in our diets.

Nevertheless, as humans, we actually don’t produce it in our bodies. So, to access it, there is a need for us to eat it. Good to know that it is common to almost everyday foods. It is indirectly linked to sleep since it is a precursor for serotonin. And the serotonin gets converted to the melatonin, and that is the best help for us to sleep.

And what people don’t think is that ingesting things such as the melatonin, serotonin, and tryptophan are not likely to render a visible effect on our sleep. But why? That is because these compounds stay in the bloodstream, and it doesn’t actually cross the blood-brain barrier. For you to induce sleep, the amino acids, as well as the hormones, will have to enter the brain.

Worry not as there is a trick to prompt the tryptophan to enter the brain. Once you combine the carbs with the dairy, it would increase the insulin levels that would make it a lot easier for the tryptophan to get into the brain. Cookies and milk sound delicious though sugar right before going to bed is not a smart idea at all.

Here are some foods that contain tryptophan:

  • Beans: Lentils and beans contain up to almost 70% of the advised daily allowance of the tryptophan based on the variety.
  • Chicken: The chicken, mainly the stewing meat, is a lot higher in tryptophan than in turkey.
  • Potato: These starchy roots do not contain tryptophan, but they can help to spike the insulin in the body allowing the tryptophan-rich foods to enter the bloodstream.
  • Nuts: Those seeds such as chia, pumpkin, sesame, flax, and sunflower are excellent sources. And the top options for nuts are almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts, and cashews.
  • Turkey: Indeed, this one is the most famous member of the tryptophan family, though not all parts have the same amount of the amino acid. You should begin from the wing to the breast and the drumstick.
  • Pasta: And the same concept which applies to potatoes as well applies to pasta.

How About The Reactions?

Definitely, a glass of warm milk could warm the body. People will sleep better once they are warm since the muscles relax more. Once the body temperature is being raised, the responses of the body also slow down. And so, the slowing of bodily response will precede sleep. The warmth of the milk will induce physical changes which create the slowing of the body’s responses as well as relaxation of the muscles.

What Are The Effects Of Drinking Warm Glass Of Milk Before Sleeping?

The warm glass of milk will coat and soothe the stomach. Once drinking warm milk, you might actually be a bit peptic, and milk might ease the feeling thus creating a sense of relief. Also, another factor is that most individuals sleep better once the stomach has something in it.

The babies will sleep after nursing since their stomachs are full. And the same is true for adults or children. It is comforting if the stomach has something in it that helps to induce sleep.
So, you wouldn’t have to bother whether why does warm milk help you sleep because you’ve got the ideas here.

Any Considerations?

Nevertheless, specific considerations must be taken cared of too. For some people, especially those with lactose intolerance or milk allergies, a glass of warm milk might lead to digestive upsets. So, if this is the case, drinking a glass of warm milk before going to bed might not be a wise idea.

But other options that could be tolerated include lactose-reduced, soy, rice and almond milk.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

And for the frequently asked questions about the reason behind why does warm milk help you sleep, consider the following:

  • What is melatonin?

Melatonin is considered as a hormone that is linked to the biological clock and is definitely a great help for us to sleep. During daytime, it drastically drops particularly once there is light. While at night, melatonin returns to induce the sleepiness.

Once suffering from a sleep disorder, bear in mind that any exposure to light in the middle of the night, like flipping the switch for a minute in your bathroom, might disrupt the melatonin production and will impact the sleep negatively.

  • Does drinking warm milk help with insomnia?

People that are suffering from insomnia could have numbers of reasons behind. However, some of the more common culprits are anxiety and stress. Since it could be relaxing if you will drink a warm beverage at the end of the day, it could be concluded that drinking a glass of warm milk before bed could possibly help in dealing with insomnia.

  • What could be the difference between drinking cold and warm milk?

If you are lactose-intolerant, you might have an easier time consuming the warm dairy than the cold one. It turns out that the heat will break down the lactose so it will be a lot easier to digest too. Cold milk might benefit those people who are suffering from acid reflux. It is as well a practical way in combating dehydration along with water.

  • Is it ok to put some honey in it?

For more benefits, putting honey in the dairy beverage could be considered. Once these substances combine, they would help with digestion and could alleviate constipation. And there is also evidence that adding honey will help the skin achieve such a healthy glow. That is why most body washes and spa products contain honey and milk formulas.


So, I can say that milk can really help individuals that are suffering from sleepless nights. And the reason why does warm milk help you sleep is also explained by this article. Fortunately, for those who couldn’t sleep at night can consider a glass of warm milk instead. Liked this post? Share it with others and hit like and leave comments below!

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