Tips to Improve Sleep

Good sleep is a cornerstone of health. Six to eight hours is good for most people. However, surveys have shown sleep related issues (can’t get to sleep, can’t stay asleep, not fully rested in the morning, etc.) are chronic complaints today.

Impaired sleep can weaken your immune system. It can also increase heart disease, digestive disorders (ulcers bloating constipation and more), mood disorders (depression, anxiety, decreased motivation, etc.) Sleep deprivation can cause premature aging by interfering with the benefits gained during deep sleep.

If you sleep well don’t change whatever your routine is. Continue to support those successful actions!

The following tips have worked for some people who DO have sleep issues. Pick out one or two at a time and give them a try.

1. Don’t change your bedtime. Even on weekends you should go to bed and wake up at the same times each day. This helps your body establish a sleep rhythm.

2. Establish a bedtime routine. This could include meditation, deep breathing, using aromatherapy or essential oils or indulging in a massage from your partner. The key is to find something that makes you feel relaxed, then repeat it each night to help you release the tensions of the day.

3. Don’t drink any fluids within 2 hours of going to bed. This will reduce the likelihood of needing to get up and go to the bathroom, or at least minimize the frequency.

4. Go to the bathroom right before bed. This will reduce the chances that you’ll wake up to go in the middle of the night.

5. Eat a high-protein snack several hours before bed. This can provide the L-tryptophan needed for melatonin and serotonin. Both are neurotransmitters that help you get a good night’s sleep.

6. Eat a small piece of fruit. This can help the tryptophan cross your blood-brain barrier.

7. Avoid before-bed snacks, particularly grains and sugars. These will raise your blood sugar and delay sleep. Later, when blood sugar drops too low (hypoglycemia), you may wake up and be unable to fall back asleep.

8. Take a hot bath, shower or sauna before bed. When your body temperature is raised in the late evening, it will fall at bedtime, facilitating slumber. The temperature drop from getting out of the bath signals your body it’s time for bed.

Article adapted from Health Freedoms.

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