Finding yourself short fused, feeling run down and looking like the walking dead because of the lack of a good-night’s sleep?
Scientist still do not really understand why we sleep, however, many of us are fully aware how important it is, for our bodies and our health. The occasional toss and turn maybe normal but chronic sleep deprivation can certainly take a toll on us. Here are some natural ways that can help lull you into dreamland.
Have a Routine
A consistent schedule will help with getting your sleep and wake cycle in sync. Try getting to bed and waking up at the same time each day.
Avoid Stimulants Before Bed
This not only involves what you consume but what you do. We are all aware that caffeine is a stimulant; however, many of us still consume it close to our bedtime either without knowing it or believing that “coffee does not affect me”. Research clearly shows that caffeine lessens the quality of your sleep, so even though you can fall as sleep you may not be getting quality sleep. Caffeine may also be hidden in many soft drinks, chocolate products, energy drinks and even some pain medications . So, start reading your labels. Also, get your body to wind down by reading a book, listening to relaxing music or engaging in some meditation vs wiring it up watching television.
Board Up Your Room
Well, not quite literally, but do make sure you sleep in a completely dark room. Researchers have shown that exposure to light and particularly blue light actually suppress the production of melatonin, the major hormone involved in sleep and wake cycles. “Blue” light is a type of light radiated by devices such as television computer screens and cell phones. So turn off those electronics before hitting the sack.
Avoid Sugar Before Sleep
What sugar can do to a kid can do the same to you and keep you wide awake at night. High sugary foods just before bed can cause highs and lows with your blood sugar balance, which can lead to difficulty falling, or staying asleep.
Don’t Go to Bed Stuffed
A large meal just before bed can disrupt sleep vs inducing it. It can create discomfort or even acid reflux that can lead to sleepless nights.
Include Foods High in Magnesium
Magnesium is an important mineral for many functions in the body including the regulation of sleep. So a magnesium deficiency can affect your sleep. Good sources of magnesium include nuts and seeds and dark leafy greens. Think almonds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, kelp, and collard greens.
Avoid Reaching for the Drugs
There are natural and effective remedies to induce the zzz’s. Passionflower and Valerian or two excellent natural sleep aids. Both herbs have a number of studies supporting that they can reduce restlessness, anxiety, and nervousness and act as an relaxant to calm the nervous system. Passionflower also appears to help reduce muscle spasms. Consult a healthcare practitioner to see if they are suitable for you,
Not all of the above will apply to you, but if you find yourself guilty of any of them, try making these small changes. Although you might not be able to control all of the factors that interfere with your sleep, you can adopt habits that encourage better sleep. And stick to it! Poor sleep hygiene is like any other bad habit, it will take time to kick it.