According to Dr Mehmet Oz, as we age our bodies do not produce as much of the hormone, melatonin. This often leads to insomnia, or waking up several times through the night. Older women going through menopause, and even older men fin themselves unable to obtain and maintain proper sleep.
Prescription drugs or over the counter sleep aids may gave side effects, and often do not work. I recall working night shift at a nursing home, where many of the older residents, would stay awake all night, even when they were given prescription medication, such as the anti anxiety drug ativan (lorazepam). Studies even indicate that prescription melatonin does not always work.
If you need assistance relaxing and falling asleep at night, Tart cherry juice is being hailed as a natural alternative. According to Dr. Oz, tart cherry juice is naturally rich in melatonin. He suggests that an 8 ounce glass of this beverage, several hours before bed should do the trick. Olive oil, grape skins, wine and walnuts are also foods rich in melatonin.