The Sure Fire Way to Sleep Better Tonight
Are you having trouble sleeping through the night? Do you feel exhausted all day?
Do not fear, it’s possible to get a great night’s sleep again! Read on to understand exactly why sleep is important and 5 tips to get a good night’s sleep!
The science of sleep is fascinating, complicated and growing
Sleep is this daily thing that we all do and yet we're just beginning to understand all of the ways it helps us and all of the factors that can affect it.
Lack of sleep affects just about everything in your body and mind. People who get less sleep tend to be at higher risk for so many health issues like diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancer; not to mention effects like slower metabolism, weight gain, hormone imbalance, and inflammation. And don't forget the impact lack of sleep can have on moods, memory and decision-making skills.
And aren't you just miserable when all you want to do is go to sleep?
Here are the three main purposes of sleep:
- To restore our body and mind. Our bodies repair, grow and even “detoxify” our brains while we sleep.
- To improve our brain's ability to learn and remember things, technically known as “synaptic plasticity”.
- To have energy.
Do you know how much sleep adults need? It's less than your growing kids need but you may be surprised that it's recommended that all adults get 7 - 9 hours a night.
Try not to skimp! I’ve been guilty of bragging about surviving my day after only getting 4-6 hours. Sleep deprivation is nothing to brag about!
(Don't worry, I have you covered with a bunch of actionable tips below.)
Tips for better sleep
● The biggest tip is definitely to try to get yourself into a consistent sleep schedule. Make it a priority and you're more likely to achieve it. This means turning off your lights 8 hours before your alarm goes off. Seven. Days. A. Week. I know weekends can easily throw this off but by making sleep a priority for a few weeks your body and mind will adjust and thank you for it.
● Balance your blood sugar throughout the day. You know, eat less refined and processed foods and more whole foods (full of blood-sugar-balancing fiber). Choose the whole orange instead of the juice (or orange-flavored snack). Make sure you're getting some protein every time you eat. Healthy fats are a necessity for stable blood sugar and for proper brain function (since our brain is 60% fat).
● Use magnesium. Most of us are deficient in magnesium which can prevent the brain from settling down at night. It’s always best to get the nutrients we need from food. The foods highest in magnesium are dark leafy greens like spinach and swiss chard. You can also get a good amount of magnesium from nuts and seeds. I also like to use Ease Magnesium Spray. You can spray this right on your skin which will absorb the magnesium with no discomfort like some other magnesium sprays I’ve tried. Using Epsom Salt in your bath is another great way to absorb magnesium (check out the recipe for relaxing bath salts below).
● Cut off your caffeine and added sugar intake after 12pm. Whole foods like fruits and veggies are fine, it's the “added” sugar we're minimizing. Yes, this includes your beloved chai latte. Both caffeine and added sugar can keep your mind a bit more active than you want it to be in the evening.
● Use essential oils. Essential oils like Lavender, Vetiver, Roman Chamomile, and Juniper Berry are very well known for promoting relaxation and a restful nights sleep. To learn more about essential oils, watch the free ‘Essential Oils 101’ video I made for you here. You can also read more about safely using essential oils here.
● Have a relaxing bedtime routine that starts 1 hour before your “lights out” time (that is 8 - 10 hours before your alarm is set to go off). This would include dimming your artificial lights, nixing screen time and perhaps reading an (actual, not “e”) book or having a bath. (Recipe below for relaxing bath salts).
So how many of these tips can you start implementing today?
BONUS: Calming Bath Salts DIY recipe
What you need:
What to do:
Fill glass container with Epsom Salt. Add 10-20 drops of essential oil. Stir or put lid on and shake to mix. Place 2-3 teaspoons in bath and enjoy!
Peace and wellness -
PS. If you want to learn more about how to use essential oils in your daily health and wellness routine, click here for my free video.