We’ve all heard the old saw that on Thanksgiving, it’s all the turkey that makes you sleepy.  Apparently because turkey contains tryptophan, an amino acid.  So does milk, so it’s not too surprising that people think warm milk helps you fall asleep.

Wrong on both counts.  Unless, of course, you intend to eat several turkeys at one sitting … or drink gallons of warm milk.  The fact is, neither contains enough tryptophan to make one fall asleep.

There are lots of myths out there about sleep.  For instance, alcohol helps you sleep.  While alcohol may help you to drop off to sleep a little more quickly than usual, it also then disrupts your sleep, not permitting you to get the proper refreshing, restorative sleep that your body needs.

Or, watching TV in bed helps you fall asleep.  Wrong, again.  The blue light emitted by most modern televisions actually tricks your brain into thinking it’s time to be up and awake.  As a result, your body releases much less melatonin, the hormone that eases you into sleep, than it would otherwise.

Myths are just that … old stories that have been around so long that we just take them for granted.  But when it comes to your sleep, or any aspect of your health, the best advice comes from your doctor.