Worrying about what’s gone on today and what’s happening tomorrow is the most common cited reason why people feel they don’t sleep well. Physical discomfort, such as needing the loo was another.
Other research points to the use of light emitting devices late at night, such as mobile phones, laptops and watching TV. The blue light suppresses melatonin production which is important for sleep. Caffeine and alcohol consumption, particularly in the evenings is another key factor – the caffeine from a single cup of coffee can stay in your system for up to 56 hours, and even decaffeinated coffee contains a small but significant amount of caffeine (up to 10mgs per cup).
Did you know that the majority of your human growth hormone is generated while you sleep? It’s crucial for building lean body mass and brain tissue, and recovering from the demands of the day.
Your risk of stroke and some cancers also seems to be correlated with how well you sleep, as well as how quickly and gracefully your body ages.
So how can you ensure a better night’s sleep? Here are my top tips:
– Avoid caffeine after lunchtime, and alcohol before bed
– Eat your last meal by 7pm and make it your smallest
– Switch your mobile/laptop/TV off at 8pm
– Have a hot bath with Epsom salts – 2 mugfuls in a bath is about right
– Write down your to-do list in a book, as well as any worries from the day, so they get out of your head and down on paper
Here’s to a great night’s sleep tonight then!
Wishing you all the best in health and happiness,