The Top 6 Things to Get a Better Nights Sleep
Are you trying to lose weight, get in shape, stay healthy and feel young? If so… it’s important to sleep well in order to get the most out of your efforts.
Here are a few of the many ways lack of sleep can disrupt our body’s hormones:
- Increased glucose sensitivity leading to weight gain
- Decreased Human Growth Hormone aka the “repair” hormone resulting in a decrease in muscle mass and energy levels.
- Increased cortisol leading to irritability and tension.
For most people these days, life is busy. It’s very common that both parents work and kids are very active. That doesn’t leave much time for parents to wind down and let their bodies get the rest they need. It’s been said that getting to sleep is like parking your car i.e. it should be done carefully, gradually and with care. However, most people are crashing their way into bed.
Make falling asleep an important routine…more important than washing your face and brushing your teeth.
Here are the top 6 things to help you achieve a quality deep sleep:
- Use a blue light blocking program ( visit www.f.lux) on your electronics or wear blue light blocking glasses when using electronics. Even better, stop using all electronics at least 1 hour before bed.
- Keep your bedroom dark, quiet and cool. If you wake through the night and can’t get back to sleep you may be getting overheated. Another option is to purchase a cooling pad for your pillow.
- Make sure you stop eating at least 2-3 hours before bed. Think of digestion like a nutrition factory. You can’t get good sleep if you factory is running all night to deal with your late night snacks, meal and drinks.
- Get adjusted. An irritated nerve system along with the aches and tension associated with spinal misalignments often feel worse at night when you are not moving around.
- When falling asleep, notice your breathing. Timing the inhale to equal the timing of the exhale will help you drift off into a deep sleep. If you have a lot on your mind, write your to do list on the bedside note pad so you can forget about it until the next day.
- Take a cold bath or shower. We know this sounds counterintuitive and you would think that a warm bath would help you relax and wind down. However, taking cold baths seems to help “reset” your body for deep relaxation. Tim Ferris of the 4 Hour Body (who struggles with sleep issues) said it made him feel like he “was hit by an elephant tranquilizer”.
We are in a sleep deprivation epidemic. There’s always something to think about, something to plan and something to entertain us- all of which don’t let us shut down and get a deep sleep. Make the skill of parking for your sleep a priority and you and the people around you will notice how much better you look and feel.