With our busy lifestyles and so much on our plates, sometimes sleep can feel like a rare commodity. We know good sleep supports weight loss, high energy levels, clarity of mind and natural detoxification. But how many hours do we actually need? Sleep experts say that most adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night for optimal health (WebMD). Having enough sleep is in the same league as having regular exercise and a healthy diet. If you’re struggling to get a good night’s sleep, then this article is for you! So slip into your favourite pyjamas and follow these 7 Simple Ways To Sleep Better.
Cool and Dark Room
Turning off any bright light source sends signals to our body that it’s time to rest. It’s best to sleep in a dark room with a temperature between 16 and 20 degrees Celsius. Earlier on, when darkness descends after sunset is when the pineal gland in our brain is ‘switched on’ by the sympathetic nervous system. It begins to actively produce melatonin, our sleepy hormone that prepares our body to sleep, slowly pumping it into our bloodstream. Any bright light source decreases melatonin which is why keeping our bedrooms as dark as possible is recommended. Research has also shown the importance of reducing blue light exposure of an evening, to directly improve mood, alertness and sleep quality. This includes screens emitting blue light, so aim to be off screens a minimum of an hour before bedtime.
Alarm to Start Unwinding
Though you’re busy juggling a lot of stuff in and out of your house, setting up an alarm or reminder that you should start unwinding helps prepare your body to sleep. Consider setting a nightly reminder one to two hours before your routine bedtime. Calming activities include listening to relaxing music, dimming the lights, drawing a bath with magnesium salts or reading a book. Relaxing your mind and body can become one of your favourite parts of the day to look forward to.
Limit Coffee and Alcohol
Caffeine in coffee is well known for keeping our senses awake in the daytime. However it’s definitely a drink where too much is not a good thing, interrupting our ability to easily fall asleep. Consuming alcohol late in the day will also usually affect our sleep quality. They are both options to drink if you choose, however it’s definitely an area to be discerning. Try cutting back for two weeks and see how your body responds. What we don’t want is unwittingly keeping significant roadblocks to preparing your body for a good night’s sleep.
Natural Light on Waking
It is highly recommended you wake to a natural light source. For our body, the biggest cue is light coming through our eyes in the morning. We now know there are nerves that directly link our eyes, our circadian rhythm and our body’s master clock. When the sun rises, signals are sent from the eyes to the brain to turn down the melatonin. Doing so promotes a healthy biological clock and ensures that our sleep-wake pattern is in sync. The easy and enjoyable habit to create is to head outside as close to waking as possible, and sit, walk or exercise for a minimum of ten minutes. No sunglasses for this time tho – we want strong to send strong signalling to our body clocks!
Nothing beats the feeling of sleeping with a smile on your face. The best way to achieve that? A gratitude journal writing down things for which you are grateful! It sets the stage for a good night’s sleep because it lowers your blood pressure, decreases the risk of depression and anxiety and invites in a state of calm. It is totally up to you how many times you do it in a week. Consider starting with writing down three things you’re grateful for each day. They don’t have to be big, yet they bring you joy and contentment. The goal is to give you a light and happy feeling before sleeping.
Pass the Pistachios
Protein, magnesium, and melatonin are all sleep promoters found in pistachios. Pistachios are a fave snack for the evening as not only are they highly nutritious, they also contain the highest level of melatonin of any food. Chowing down on two pistachios after dinner will promote sleepiness. Plus your body will love the special treat.
Remember the old wives’ tale that a warm glass of milk before bedtime helps sleep? Let’s do this in style with a Golden Milk Turmeric Latte! The almond milk provides magnesium for resting muscles and rejuvenation. Meanwhile the turmeric reduces inflammation, lowers our blood sugar levels, helps our liver to detoxify and eases our digestive system, all of which the body loves to attend to while we’re sleeping. This drink supports you to get to sleep faster, to sleep better, and to wake up feeling relaxed and refreshed. What’s not to love! Check out the recipe below and if you want some tips and tricks on preparing this evening drink follow this link https://melt.kitchen/golden-turmeric-milk-latte/
Golden Turmeric Milk Latte
10-minute prep time
Thumb size knob of Ginger
1 cup Organic Almond Milk
1 cup Water
1 tsp Turmeric powder
1 tbsp Maple Syrup
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
Grind of black pepper
Remember if you want the method along with tips and tricks for putting this evening drink together check it out following this link.