Whether you are dealing with anxiety about work, stress about your financial situation, or just insomnia, losing sleep is draining. The negative effects of insomnia are far worse than feeling tired the next day.
Sleep is a very important factor in your health. For instance, sleep issues can lead to weight gain, increasing the chances of you getting sick, loss of focus, and more. So, it is important to develop healthy sleep habits that will help improve your chances of falling and staying asleep. If you are having a difficult time with insomnia and your sleep schedule, try these natural remedies.
1. Set the right temperature
When the room is too warm, you will become sweaty. When the room is too cold, it will leave you shivering. Try to set your temperature between 60 and 73 degrees Fahrenheit. If you choose the chilly side of the scale, it will help decrease your internal body temperature and maintain sleep.
2. Set the mood
Dim the lights at least 30 minutes before your bedtime. Turn on something that is calming. For example, it can be the sound of the rain, white noise, thunder, or music. Some people may like quiet, so laying in silence is an option as well. Try to make a routine that works best for you to tell your body it’s time to rest.
3. Use essential oils
Using essential oils, or aromatherapy, in your routine is a great way to settle in a calming mood. I always recommend using lavender oil and Roman chamomile.
Studies have found that lavender oil can improve your sleep and eliminate insomnia because it works as a sedative. Similarly, chamomile is great for stress reduction. Whether it is from the essential oil, tea, or any other form, it will help your body stay calm.
4. Relax your mind
Many people find that reading 30 minutes before they go to bed helps them get to sleep faster. This gives your body a chance to slow down and let go of any racing thoughts.
5. Skip late night snacks
Avoid sugary sweets, simple carbs, juice, or high-glycemic fruit just before bed. As they can spike blood sugar and boost your energy. Instead, try a little bit of protein with a vegetable or a small number of carbohydrates with protein.
As it really depends on your body, some people can have fruit before bed and it has no effect on them. Here are snacks I recommend having before bed:
- half a banana with almond butter
- hummus with carrots, cucumber, or celery
- a small handful of cashews, 1/4 cup dried fruit
6. Keep electronics out of bed
If you are on your phone in bed, it can trick your brain into thinking that your bed is another place to be alert instead of relaxed. Watch television in the living room and keep your bedroom for sleep.
7. Maintain a regular sleep schedule
Your body recognizes the times you go to sleep, so it will become easier if you try to stick to the same schedule. Set your goal for an average of eight hours of sleep each night.
8. Stop caffeine after 12 p.m.
The effects of caffeine can last up to 12 hours and can wreak havoc on your sleep schedule. Eliminating caffeine at night will improve your quality of sleep.
9. Exercise in the morning
If your working out before bed, endorphins from exercising can cause sleepless nights. Therefore, try to work out in the morning, because it will be easier to fall asleep at night.
11. Eat melatonin foods
Melatonin is an important factor in your sleep pattern. So, eating foods that support the production of melatonin will help you sleep at night.
- Morello cherries
- Porridge oats
12. Add magnesium
Often times, magnesium deficiency is the culprit of sleepless nights. There are many foods you can eat that contain magnesium, or you may add a supplement to boost your levels.
Magnesium Rich Foods
- Spinach, cooked — 1 cup: 157 milligrams
- Swiss chard, cooked — 1 cup: 150 milligrams
- Dark Chocolate — 1 square: 95 milligrams
- Pumpkin seeds, dried — 1/8 cup: 92 milligrams
- Almonds — 1 ounce: 75 milligrams
- Black beans — 1/2 cup: 60 milligrams
- Avocado — 1 medium: 58 milligrams
- Figs, dried — 1/2 cup: 50 milligrams
- Yogurt or kefir — 1 cup: 46.5 milligrams
- Banana — 1 medium: 32 milligrams
13. Don’t force it
Don’t ever try to force yourself to sleep. Instead of laying there thinking about how bad you want to sleep, get up and do something for a couple of minutes.
14. Get some sun
Getting out in the sun balances your body’s melatonin and cortisol levels, as well as, provides vitamins D. Research suggest low levels of vitamin D are linked to sleep disturbances. Try to start your day off with some natural sunlight.
15. Relax with a bath
Instead of taking a shower, relax with a bath. This will help calm your brain, rid your body of toxins, and soothe your body.
Pour a cup of Epsom salt in your bath and soak for 20 minutes.
Meditation can help reduce stress and put your body in an ultimate calm state. As a result, it can improve your sleep dramatically. Take in deep and slow breaths to calm your mind and body. You may like deep breathing meditation in silence or guided meditation, both are helpful.