Much like healthy eating habits and movement, sleep is an important part of life.
Research suggests that lack of quality sleep can have many negative effects on our mind and body. Among these are, increase in risk of disease, hormonal changes, weight gain and brain function.
Here are a few tips to help you get more sleep regularly:
Create a ritual or routine
Once our alarm sounds in the morning, we are more likely to have a list of things we want to get done. These tasks became a part of our morning routine to get us going for the day. Similarly, creating a sleeping ritual or routine can have a similar effect. Taking 30-45 minutes to read, write, dim the lights, and/or meditation can all help us unwind to get quality sleep at night. As we consistently perform these tasks before bed, we signal to our body that its time to sleep, allowing us to get into the flow of it better.
Just as a morning workout can energize you for the day, a light evening workout can help you relax for the night. This is because exercise releases endorphins and natural melatonin allowing us to feel more relaxed. However, avoid exercising too close to bedtime because it can have the opposite effect. A brisk walk or yoga can are good options
Take a warm shower
Just as a cold shower can wake you up in the morning, a warm shower can do the opposite at night. Studies suggest that taking a warm shower increases our bodies temperature triggering our bodies to dilate blood vessels found in our skin to dissipate heat which has a cooling effect. The external heat forces our bodies' natural cooling system to cool us off. This cooling effect can help us to fall and stay asleep through the night.
Our bodies perform so many functions during sleep making it an important part of our overall health and wellness. Getting quality sleep is key to living a better life!