Milk: The Bedtime Drink


Between obligations from family and work as well as distractions from TVs, computers and smartphones, sometimes the last thing on people's minds is sleep. According to the National Center on Sleep Disorder Research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), as much as 40 percent of the US population suffers from insomnia. Millions also suffer from sleep disorders such as snoring, sleep apnea and nighttime wakening, even if they sleep the appropriate number of hours every night. Thankfully, there are simple ways to combat this problem, even as simple as drinking milk before bed. That's why the California Milk Processor Board (CMPB), the creator of GOT MILK?, has partnered with renowned sleep expert Dr. Nina Shapiro to educate Californians about the importance of establishing a nighttime routine that starts with the real and simple beverage, milk.

"Whether you drink it warm or cold, drinking milk has been scientifically proven to help relax the body," says Dr. Shapiro, who practices at the University of California, Los Angeles' Geffen School of Medicine and the Sleep Center.  "Milk is high in protein, vitamins, calcium, and the amino acid tryptophan which all have a positive impact on sleep quality."   

This spring, the CMPB launched two, 30-second TV spots titled 'Goddess' and 'Flight' to reinforce how drinking milk before bed can help achieve quality sleep and ultimately, longer, lasting positive dreams. The campaign is also supported by radio spots on Pandora as well as online banner and bus shelter ads.

"The advertising campaign coupled with the education program with Dr. Shapiro provides a holistic approach to raising awareness about the milk health benefit of sleep," says Steve James, Executive Director of the CMPB. "We're excited to partner with Dr. Shapiro to provide tips to Californians about the importance of setting a nighttime routine for better sleep quality."

The National Center on Sleep Disorder Research also reports that getting proper rest not only helps people recover from the day, but it also helps prepare the mind and body for a successful start the next day. People who lack proper sleep suffer from fatigue, stress, increased risk of motor vehicle accidents, irritability, and have shorter attention spans throughout the day. 

Along with consuming the nighttime drink, milk, prior to bed, Dr. Shapiro encourages practicing the following nighttime routine:

NO SUGAR - A bowl of frosted marshmallow flakes or a scoop of ice cream can be very tempting as nighttime snack. Sugary foods will cause a sudden spike in blood sugar levels, followed by a crash one to two hours later. This may lead to restlessness and nighttime wakening. Avoiding sugar will help relax the body before bed and enhance both depth of sleep and sleep quality.   .

SHUT OFF - Most of us aren't getting enough sleep because we're always "ON." We're over-scheduled and over-stimulated with television, computers, smartphones and other electronic devices. Why not dedicate the last hour before bed to YOU?  Take the time to decompress, take a bath and turn off electronic devices. Doing so will keep your mind at peace, preparing you for a good night's rest.

TO-DO LIST - If you find yourself thinking of things you need to do after you've left the office for the day, write them down on a piece of paper (or your phone's notepad) and put them away. Not only will you have a clear roadmap for the next morning, but you'll also clear your head and focus on rest.

For more tips from Dr. Shapiro and to view the new GOT MILK? ads, visit