The National Sleep Foundation reported that as much as 40% of American adults have trouble falling asleep. It goes to show just how important it is to sleep well, as it is as important as adhering to a healthy diet and engaging in a regular exercise routine.
Sleeping poorly harms our brain function, exercise performance, and hormones. Sadly, it even leads to weight gain and various diseases both in children and adults.
By experiencing proper rest, we will find ourselves healthier, exercising more, and eating less.
Unfortunately, many of us do not get enough sleep. If we wish to maximize our ability to be healthier and lose weight, then we need to find ways to start sleeping better.
We will highlight some recommended ways to help you accomplish your sleeping goals.
Tips for Sleeping Better
Adults aged 26 to 64 need at least 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night. Individuals over the age of 65 can do with 7 to 8 hours.
The best way to gauge whether you’re getting enough sleep or not is to adjust your sleeping time until you manage to wake up at least 5 or 10 minutes ahead of your best alarm clock. If you find you sleep past the alarm time, then you need to go to sleep earlier, Should you wake up way too early, then go to sleep a few minutes later.
Amazingly, circadian rhythms, our exercise habits, what we eat and drink, stress issues, our night routine, and the makeup of our bedroom, all influence our sleeping patterns.
It is imperative that we make a point of going to bed and waking up at a set time every night and every morning. The same should apply to weekends. Be careful about exposing yourself to blue lights at night. Especially when it's within 1 to 2 hours before you turn the lights out.
Be respectful to your body’s need to go to bed a little earlier or later. Even better, get yourself the best alarm clock, so you do not lie awake at night, stressing whether or not you’ll wake up in time.
If you must take a nap during the day, be sure to do so at around 1 or 1:30 pm when you are an early riser. Alternatively, take a power nap at 2:30 or 3 pm when you are a late riser. Ensure you limit your napping time during the day to only 20 minutes.
Develop a Solid Exercise Habit
Those of you who exercise often can give yourselves a well-deserved pat on the back. You’ll probably find you sleep much better at night.
The fitness experts reckon that early morning exercise is best. While you are at it, be sure to take in some sunlight and, if possible, make it a habit of having your lunch in the sun too. It will make a big difference when bedtime arrives.
However, some people sleep much better after an evening workout. It is a case of discovering what works best.
Your Food and Drink Can Make a Difference to How Well You Sleep
Do not consume a large portion of food at night. Instead, opt for a smaller potion that consists of carbohydrates and protein.
Limit your intake of caffeinated drinks later in the day as they are stimulants.
While marijuana and alcohol consumption make you fall asleep faster, the quality of your sleep won’t be the same.
If you must take a sleeping pill with your meal, only do so for a limited period.
While we are on the topic of food and how getting it right can improve your sleeping patterns, let’s have a look at some of the top six food groups to help your sleep:
- Almonds: All you need is a handful of almonds as it provides 19% of the recommended daily ratio of magnesium.
- Turkey: Apparently, turkey meat promotes sleepiness. It contains tryptophan, which is great for alleviating depression.
- Sweet potatoes: An excellent source of potassium and carbohydrates.
- Fatty fish: This is one meal that proves to be useful for increasing the production of serotonin. One may attribute the production of this sleep-enhancing chemical to the combination of omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D.
- Cherries: Contrary to popular belief that the sugar in cherries will keep you awake at night, there is evidence that consuming or drinking cherries improve one’s quality of sleep. It could be due to its high melatonin levels.
- Bananas: Contains sufficient portions of tryptophan, potassium, and magnesium.
Dealing with Stress and Following a Set Night Routine Will Improve Sleeping
Avoid stimulating activities such as work and engage in relaxing activities before bedtime. What comes to mind is where people plug away on their laptops when in bed. Know that your bedroom is meant for sleeping.
Do your utmost to minimize stress in your life and develop a relaxed attitude by telling yourself that if do not sleep soundly for one night, then you will experience better sleep at another time. Slow yourself down and engage in calming activities. Your brain will soon be re-programmed to recognize the need for sleep.
In cases where you struggle to sleep, rather get up, engage in a calming activity such as reading, and get under the covers once you become sleepy.
Setting the Right Mood for Your Bedroom
Ensure your room is dark. If this is not possible, then wear a sleep mask.
Your room must be quiet, as well. If it’s not, then get yourself a set of earplugs. Alternatively, you can add a few items to your wall to absorb or deflect sound.
Check the firmness of your mattress and try sleeping on other mattresses, which should include the best mattress for side sleepers. Why not take advantage of companies that offer a 100 nights sleep trial.
Be sure to try different pillows and find one that is suited to your particular needs.
Consider, too, the quality of the air in your bedroom. Especially if you struggle with breathing issues or allergies.
If you want to experience optimum wellbeing and health, then you need to do everything in your power to improve your sleeping habits, Hopefully, you will find the tips provided above useful in that endeavor.