6 Simple Steps To Help You Sleep Better
Sleep! It’s what everyone looks forward to, but doesn’t get enough of. Some days, sleep feels like a luxury, right? Today, I’ll review my tips on how to sleep better.
I’m sure you know from experience how a bad night’s sleep sets you up for a day of dragging your feet in a fog. The real problem lies in a lack of consistent quality sleep, which creates far more serious consequences than feeling groggy.
Sleep is one of the leading influences on how your body functions. It affects your immunity strength, metabolic rate (think energy expenditure and weight control), emotional state (critical thinking/choices), and even your risk for health issues and diseases, such as, depression, diabetes, heart disease and Alzheimer’s.
How to Sleep Better in 6 Simple Steps
1. Stick to a sleep schedule
Improving your sleep starts with supporting your body’s circadian rhythm, a natural internal process that regulates your sleep-wake cycle and repeats every 24 hours. Waking up in the morning and allowing light into your eyes resets this rhythm every day.
What to do:
✓ Go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day of the week, even if you can “sleep in.”
✓ Budget a minimum of 7 hours of sleep (up to 9).
Curious as to why your body needs this amount of sleep? Check out my video/blog, “How Much Sleep Do We Really Need?”
2. Assess your diet
Both what and when you eat greatly influences sleep. Certain foods actually fuel insomnia by spiking blood sugar and leaving you hungry soon after. Eating dinner or snacks too close to bedtime can also have this effect. Sugar, caffeine and alcohol are the top sleep stealing substances.
What to do:
✓ Skip sugary and carbohydrate heavy foods not only before bedtime, but during the day as much as you can. At the very least, limit them and your overall health will improve too.
✓ Finish your last meal or snack at least 2 hours before bedtime (3 hours is most ideal). If you must eat within this window, go for something that contains healthy fat to keep you feeling full without throwing your blood sugar out of whack. Try avocado, olives, salmon, or almond butter and celery sticks.
✓ Restrict or avoid alcohol entirely, especially within 3 hours of bedtime. Alcohol is a depressant that may feel like a sleep aid, but it interferes with the quality of it shortly after. The dehydrating effect of alcohol will disturb your sleep and next day too.
✓ Cut caffeinated beverages off by 12 p.m. or better yet, avoid them all together. I understand this may be tough if you’re stuck in a cycle of feeling tired and relying on coffee or energy drinks to get you over a mid-day slump. Click hereto discover a healthy alternative when you need a boost of energy.
3. Exercise during the day
One way to strengthen your circadian rhythm is to move throughout the day. Since exercise increases alertness and raises your body temperature, doing it closer to bedtime can disrupt sleep.
What to do:
✓ Exercising first thing in the morning is best (and not within 4 hours of bedtime). If you can do this outside, even better! Did you know: Sunlight stops your brain from releasing melatonin (the hormone that helps promote sleep). Just the walk to your mailbox first thing in the morning helps regulate your sleep cycle and perk you up better than a cup of coffee.
✓ If you can’t schedule a formal workout, consider parking further away and getting a brisk walk in.
4. Set the Mood
Your core body temperature naturally decreases in the evening and triggers your brain that it’s time to sleep. This is why the temperature of your sleeping environment influences your sleep cycle. Also, just as sunlight wakes you up, darkness signals your brain and regulates your sleep cycle too.
What to do:
✓ Cool your sleeping environment to between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
✓ Darken your room by turning off lights, electronics and covering windows.
5. Ban blue light
Speaking of electronics …the blue light they give off steals your sleep by blocking your body’s production of melatonin.
What to do:
✓ Avoid screen time at night and before bedtime. This includes cell phones, computers, TVs and the like.
✓ If this is impossible for you, you should wear special glasses that block this harmful blue light.
6. Consider supplementing
Natural sleep aids work to encourage better sleep quality, without any groggy side effects in the morning. Certain nutrients, vitamins and herbs are known to help you unwind and promote sleep. These include magnesium, melatonin, L-theanine, 5-HTP, and valerian root.
With so many people struggling to get enough quality sleep and knowing how critical sleep is to good health, I’ve created a formula to assist the body’s natural sleep cycle. It’s appropriately named Vitamin Zzzz and contains all of the above nutrients (and more) to promote rest and recovery – what your body needs to not only function, but heal and grow properly.
What to do:
✓ Consume a nutrient-dense diet with plenty of vegetables and healthy fat (eat organic whenever possible). Avoid sugar and processed foods full of chemicals and additives as much as possible – they not only offer no health benefits, but can rob your body of nutrients you are getting.
Check out my tips on how to spot and cut down on hidden sugar.
✓ Consider BodyManual’s Vitamin Zzzz formula to help you achieve restorative sleep and feel refreshed in the morning.
Make Better Sleep a Reality
Modern day life and hectic schedules are a big barrier to getting enough quality rest. Science and research continue to support the fact that good sleep is absolutely essential for a healthy body. The truth is, your body will not adapt positively without enough sleep and, therefore, good health really depends on you making changes.
By following these simple steps, you set the foundation for great sleep and a more successful following day.
Be sure to share these tips and help others prioritize shut-eye too!
"Zzzzzzzzzzzzz... That is all i can say about this. Love the extra vitamins for cold season. Haven't gotten ill yet (knock on wood). As far as putting me to sleep... Yep, it works... Great product..."
Jonathan | ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
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