Hype or Help? Experts Weigh In on the Latest Sleep Trend

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Hype or Help? Experts Weigh In on the Latest Sleep Trend

How Much Sleep Do You Need? Expert Tips for a Better Rest

While the "sleepy girl mocktail" trend on social media claims to improve sleep thanks to tart cherry juice and magnesium powder, experts say the drink's main effect is likely a placebo.

Dr. Steven Feinsilver, director of the Center for Sleep Medicine at Northwell Lenox Hill Hospital, explains that anything believed to relax and induce sleep can do so due to the strong placebo effect on sleep. However, he adds that trying the combination in reasonable doses wouldn't be harmful.

Tart cherry juice contains a small amount of natural melatonin and the amino acid tryptophan. Melatonin, produced by the pineal gland, signals the brain to initiate sleep. However, its effectiveness as a sleep-inducing agent is minimal for most people. Tryptophan, found in many foods, can be converted into serotonin, a neurotransmitter that might cause sedation.

Magnesium, on the other hand, is believed to help prepare the body for sleep by affecting certain hormones. Studies have shown that magnesium supplements can aid melatonin production, leading many to use them for sleep regulation.

If you're considering trying the "sleepy girl mocktail," Dr. Mike Sevilla, a family physician, advises consulting your doctor first. Over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements can interfere with prescription medications and affect chronic medical conditions. Additionally, individuals with blood sugar issues should avoid this drink due to its high carbohydrate content.

Sevilla also warns against using these ingredients as a solution for severe sleep problems. Persistent sleep difficulties could indicate a serious medical issue. While trying the drink might be okay in the short term, long-term sleep problems warrant a visit to your doctor to identify the root cause and receive appropriate treatment.