Sleep Week March 4 to 11
Oh, that elusive sleep. That time to relax and regenerate. To heal and repair.
If you need that coffee or two (or three) every morning you may get some very useful tips in this post.
Sleep isn’t just important for your mind and body to have energy and be alert. Lack of sleep can contribute to serious health issues which you don’t want or keep the status quo and just minimally getting better when having a chronic pain condition.
So let me have your attention for this “tip-filled” post on the importance of sleep and how you can get your fair share. I’ll even throw in an amazing caffeine-free latte recipe in the next blog post for your afternoon “pick me up”.
Bye Bye Sleeping Through the Night
Have you said “bye bye” to sleeping through the night?
Are you feeling exhausted or “running on stress hormones” all day?
Do not fear, I have some great tips for you! to start as soon as you can to help you take charge of your sleep.
The Science Of Sleep: It’s 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.
Did you know, 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 …
- heart disease
- may influence certain types of cancer
- it has an effects with slower metabolism
- weight gain
- hormone imbalance
- maintains inflammation
And don’t forget the impact lack of sleep can have on …
- decision-making skills
Do you know that lack of sleep may even negate the health benefits of your exercise program? (Gasp!)
OMG – What aspect of health does sleep not affect???
Knowing this it’s easy to see 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 conserve some energy so we’re not just actively “out and about” 24-hours a day, every day.
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. For real!
Try not to skimp!
(Don’t worry, I have you covered with a bunch of actionable tips below.)
Tips For Better Sleep
Here are 5 simple tips to help you for a better quality of 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. 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-flavoured snack). Make sure you’re getting some protein every time you eat. Need an idea? Check this recipe out.
- During the day get some sunshine and exercise. These things tell your body it’s daytime; time for being productive, active and alert. By doing this during the day it will help you wind down more easily in the evening. A small amount of exercise counts!
- 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 come evening. (HINT: I have a great caffeine-free chai latte recipe for you in the next blog post!).
- 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.
So how many of these tips can you start implementing today?