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Perth Nutritionists

Corrin Ainley
Rener Health Clinics

(08) 9330 2922



Children: important nutrients for a good night’s sleep

by on 05 October, 2018

With many potential causes for sleep issues in children, diet and nutritional supplements have been identified as a safe and effective treatment strategy.

Poor sleep is a common complaint for both children and their parents. Fatigue in children can cause a number of problems in waking life, including decreased concentration, behavioural issues, school absenteeism, lower immune resistance and less emotional resilience.

A recent 2018 systematic review and meta-analysis showed an association between consumption of fruits and vegetables and adequate sleep duration in children.

A 2015 study in 98 children between the ages of two and 18 years found that a diet which incorporated green vegetables, beef, whole milk and full-fat butter improved sleep throughout the night and resulted in less fatigue and need for naps throughout the waking hours.

Researchers attributed these changes to the micronutrient in these foods including magnesium, iron, B complex vitamins, vitamins C and E as well as fatty acids. Intake of green vegetables had the strongest benefits for mental fatigue, thought to be as a result of vitamins A and C increasing the absorption of minerals such as magnesium, zinc and iron.

Often children get insufficient nutrients due to fussy eating, digestive issues or poor levels in our food,  and then child friendly supplementation can be very valuable in improving sleep. 

Here are the top 5 nutrients to improve your childs sleep

  1. Magnesium:  leafy green vegetables, quinoa, almonds, cashews, beans, dark chocolate, avocado
  2. Vitamin B6: eggs, lean meat, poultry, fish, legumes, nuts and seeds
  3. Zinc: red meat, legumes, shellfish, eggs, seeds, nuts, oats, quinoa, rice
  4. Fish oils:  white fish, sardines, salmon
  5. Tryptophan: eggs, cheese, pineapple, tofu, salmon, nuts, seeds, turkey


Its most important to use safe supplements at the correct dose based on a child’s age and weight. At Resolve Nutrition were committed to providing the best care for you child. For support contact us a This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


  1. Steenbruggen TG, Hoekstra SJ, van der Gaag EJ. Could a change in diet revitalize children who suffer from unresolved fatigue? Nutrients 2015(7)1965-1977. 
  2. Córdova FV, Barja S, Brockmann PE. Consequences of short sleep duration on the dietary intake in children: A systematic review and metanalysis. Sleep Med Rev 2018:S1087-0792(17)30194-30196. 
  3. Abbasi B, Kimiagar M, Sadeghniiat K, et al. The effect of magnesium supplementation on primary insomnia in elderly: a double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial. J Res Med Sci 2012;17(12):1161-1169. 
  4. Hechtman L. Clinical naturopathic medicine. Chatswood: Elsevier, 2012. 
  5. Volpe AD, Lucia A, Pirozzi C, et al. Comparative study between the use of melatonin and a solution with melatonin, tryptophan, and vitamin B6 as an inducer of spontaneous sleep in children during an auditory response test: an alternative to commonly used sedative drugs. J Int Adv Otol 2017;13(1):69-7



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