Atole At Bedtime For Better Sleep

Tired of herbal tea at bedtime? Want to try something else to help you sleep?

Warm milk or atole (warmed milk with corn starch) might be what you’re looking for.

Warm milk has all of the same nutrients as cold milk, and the heat causes some sleep-promoting compounds to get unlocked. Warming means that these additional compounds are ready to be used by your body.

Served hot, milk is as tasty as it is when it’s served cold. If you’re looking for additional flavor or something different, think about making your warmed milk into atole, a milk drink with cornstarch.

Avoid atole mixes with a bunch of sugar!  You’re going to bed. You don’t need that. Sugar is energy and the extra sugar may make you feel wired, counteracting the sleep-promoting effect. Almost everyone needs to avoid carbohydrates, and milk with a bunch of sugar or corn syrup added is definitely going to add a lot of them to your diet.

As an alternative, if you feel like you absolutely have to have additional flavoring, you can add some strawberry, banana, or chocolate flavoring to a cornstarch powder like Maizena.

Heating the milk

Unfortunately, unlike boiling water, getting milk hot takes a little more attention.

If you put it on a burner and let it go, it’s likely to scald, which means the milk develops a thick skin and tastes terrible.

Whether you heat the milk in a microwave or on a stove, you’re going to need to watch it. That means stirring.

Conversely, if you find atole really helps you sleep better at night, you might want to invest in an inexpensive milk frother.

You don’t have to be locked into any one bedtime ritual. Variety can add a lot of interest in life. Warmed milk made into atole can be just the thing to send yourself to bed with.

While you can find atole mixes at some supermarkets in the United States, your best bet might still be a grocery store that serves a Hispanic community.

There are a lot of different atole recipes on the Internet, not all of which require milk. If you’re making a bedtime drink, one with milk and without a lot of added sugar would be one you’d want to favor. One with some added sugar that gets into the highly regional character of Mexican cooking is this one that can be found here.

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James Cobb, RN, MSN, is an emergency department nurse and the founder of the Dream Recovery System. His goal is to provide his readers with simple, actionable ways to improve their health and maximize their quality of life. 


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