Ensuring we get enough sleep is an extremely important aspect of our lifestyle. Not only does sleep allow the mind and body to recover, but it contributes to energy levels, productivity and frame of mind. These are my top tips to help you drift into a peaceful and harmonious slumber.
1. Decrease the caffeine
It’s a no brainer that caffeine can have a dramatic impact on our sleeping patterns. But this isn’t the only reason we should be mindful of our caffeine intake. Excess intake of caffeine can potentially lead to increased blood pressure, dehydration, interrupted sleep as well as irritability. Cap the cappuccinos to no more than 3 a day and be mindful of the caffeine content in tea and diet/soft drink also.
2. Cut out the processed sugar
Processed foods with a high sugar content can cause major upset to our blood glucose levels, energy and sleeping patterns. As we consume these highly processed substances, our blood sugar levels spike & consequently drop once it has been absorbed by the body. This can lead to a number of undesirable health consequences such as fat accumulation, mood swings, interrupted sleep and irritability. Remove processed foods out of your daily intake and replace with whole and natural food sources as often as possible.
3. Light meal before sleep
For many of us, our evening meal is the largest meal of the day. This however, can be avoided by ensuring we eat our largest meals at the beginning of the day and have a gradual decrease in meal size as the day progresses. Having a large meal before bed can cause our digestive system to go into overdrive and as a consequence delay the onset of sleep and cause disruption.
4. Electronic equipment ban
Many of us are guilty of being un-healthily obsessed with our i-phones, laptops and tablets. I am no exception. However, as we are scrolling through our instagram feeds for a last minute update before bed, these artificial lights are preventing the brain from sending sleep promoting signals and inhibiting the release of hormones such as melatonin. Switch electronic devices off at least an hour before bed and reap the benefits of a peaceful snooze.
5. Exercise regularly
Not only does exercise promote numerous health benefits, including cardiovascular health, weight management, disease prevention and the release of endorphins, it plays a large role when it comes to sleep. Exercise stimulates the muscles and promotes the circulation of blood and oxygen throughout the body. These responses encourage the onset of a healthy sleeping routine. Incorporating a variety of exercise such as cardio, strength and yoga into your weekly schedule will without a doubt improve energy levels, vitality and send those happy endorphins fluttering.
The Carousel thanks www.thehealthyingredient.com.au for this article