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Consisting of magnesium, tart cherry juice, and prebiotic soda, TikTok’s Sleepy Girl Mocktail is gaining popularity as a natural sleep aid. Westend61/Getty Images
  • Sleepy Girl Mocktail, a drink that social media users claim can help you sleep more soundly, has gained over 58 million views on TikTok.
  • The drink consists of magnesium, tart cherry juice, and prebiotic soda.
  • Experts say the drink may help induce a deeper sleep by increasing melatonin levels and reducing stress and anxiety.

If you’re having difficulty getting a good night’s sleep, TikTok might have the answer.

The Sleepy Girl Mocktail has emerged on the platform as a natural sleep aid, with many users claiming the before-bed drink helps them sleep more soundly.

The drink consists of magnesium, tart cherry juice, and usually a seltzer or soda, like OLIPOP, which contains plant fiber and prebiotics.

The mocktail was first posted by TikTok creator Gracie Norton in March 2023. Since then, thousands of users have made similar concoctions, and the #sleepygirlmocktail hashtag has amassed 58.7m views.

But how safe is it, and can it really help you sleep?

Sophie Medlin, consultant dietitian and director at City Dietitians, says people who aren’t getting enough magnesium will likely get the most benefit from this drink.

“Magnesium is known to increase levels of melatonin, a hormone that occurs naturally in our bodies and controls our sleeping patterns,” she explains.

“It also acts as a muscle relaxant and a nervous system regulator, increasing levels of GABA, a neurotransmitter that blocks out anxiety and stress in your brain.”

Research appears to back up her claims. A systematic review of 26 experimental and observational studies published in 2017 found that adequate magnesium was positively associated with how long people sleep.

Magnesium may be the hero ingredient in this medicinal mocktail. However, tart cherry juice seems to offer sleep benefits too.

Why? Because cherries contain melatonin.

“Studies have shown that melatonin may help improve insomnia, and including melatonin-rich foods could help sleep,” points out registered nutritionist Dr. Laura Wyness.

As well as containing melatonin, tart cherries have high concentrations of tryptophan, serotonin, and antioxidants.

A 2020 review found that including these in your diet could improve sleep quality and reduce oxidative damage.

Seltzers and sodas aren’t foods that are often associated with health benefits, but Wyness says the inclusion of a prebiotic soda with plant fibers may provide some sleep benefits.

“Poor gut health is associated with anxiety and stress, which may lead to poorer sleep,” she explains. “But plant fiber and prebiotics support healthy gut function, and therefore help the gut microbes make key neurotransmitters and hormones related to sleep.”

Wyness points to a 2020 review that found a diet rich in plant fiber and prebiotics — like the Mediterranean diet — supports gut microbes in producing beneficial fatty acids and bacteria.

However, despite the apparent benefits, neither expert Healthline spoke with said they were entirely sold on the Sleepy Girl Mocktail as an effective sleep aid.

Medlin says some people may notice a difference but points out that the effects could be a result of the placebo effect.

“The great thing about sleep supplements and drinks like this is that they can have a strong placebo effect, meaning that even if they don’t do very much at the physiological level, you still sleep better because you believe you will sleep better,” she notes.

Meanwhile, Wyness isn’t convinced that one drink will have an enormous influence on sleep quality simply because sleep is affected by so many variables.

“Sleep can be impacted by many lifestyle and dietary factors, so considering your activity, stress levels, environment, hydration as well as your dietary pattern and what foods and drinks you consume throughout the day are all important,” she notes.

While the jury’s out on just how effective the Sleepy Girl Mocktail is, the good news is that it’s unlikely to do you any harm.

However, Wyness says it’s probably best not to drink too much before bed as you’ll likely need to get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom.

She says it’s better to ‘front load’ your daily hydration by drinking most of your daily fluid intake in the morning and early afternoon, then tapering off in the hours before you go to sleep.

The form of magnesium you are consuming is important, too, as Wyness says they can have different effects on the body.

“Magnesium glycinate may have calming properties, whereas magnesium citrate has a laxative effect, and too much magnesium (more than 400mg) for a short time can cause diarrhea,” she warns.

Likewise, Medin says the sugar in the tart cherry juice may cause restlessness for some people as blood sugar increases before bed and can disturb sleep.

“You might want to consider adding some fiber like psyllium husk or guar gum to slow down this impact,” she suggests.

What’s more, if you’re on any kind of medication, it’s best to consult with your healthcare professional before adding a supplement like magnesium to your routine.

“Anyone who struggles with blood glucose regulation, such as diabetics and people with PCOS, should also consider limiting the juice element and just focusing on the magnesium,” Medlin adds.

If the Sleepy Girl Mocktail isn’t for you, there are loads of other natural sleep aids that may help you drift off.

First things first, Medlin says sleep is mostly about routine and relaxation, as well as limiting screen time. If all those boxes are ticked, she recommends a Magnesium blend for sleep and CBD drops.

She says magnesium bis-glycinate is particularly good for sleep.

Additionally, Medlin notes that sometimes bedtime teas can improve your bedtime relaxation routine. She suggests looking for teas that include L-theanine, a relaxing amino acid.

For Wyness, adequate vitamin D intake is key.

“A review of nine studies found that individuals with low vitamin D levels are more likely to sleep less and have a poorer quality of sleep,” she points out. “For those who suffer from sleep disorders, taking a vitamin D supplement has been shown to improve sleep quality.”

While supplementation can help, both experts agree that learning how to relax before bed is crucial.

“Find things that help you wind down in the hours before bed,” Wyness suggests. “A few gentle stretches to help relax your muscles may help.

“If your mind is anxious, writing thoughts down by journaling for a few minutes before you go to sleep can be a useful practice,” Wyness adds.

The Sleepy Girl Mocktail contains ingredients that appear to aid sleep.

Magnesium, in particular, has a lot of scientific backing as a sleep aid. But sleep is complex, and this drink may not be enough to ensure you sleep soundly.

Finding ways to maximize your health and well-being and optimize your before-bed routine is likely to be more effective.