How to improve the quality of your sleep naturally
Not only do I think sleep is the fountain of youth, I also think it is the foundation for vibrant health and happiness.
We all know that when we have not had a good night’s rest, our experience of ourselves and of our day takes a hit. Now compound this with having trouble sleeping in general and it feels like a slow decline back into just surviving. YUK!!! A lack of good quality, consistent sleep causes stress on the body. It causes us to crave carbs and gain weight and the more dramatic impact of lowering our immune system.
I have good news, it doesn’t have to stay that way. Mother nature has provided us with a handful of wonderful and safe ways to support the body in getting rested. In this post we will look at what are the natural supplements you can take to improve your sleep.
Did you know sleep, is a hormone dependent process? That’s right. The more we can keep your hormones in balance that better your sleep.
How food affects your hormones and your sleep.
To support your endocrine system aka your hormone system we want to get plenty of anti oxidants and eat a diet rich in anti inflammatory foods to deal with the toxic burden of our stressful, modern living.
Having a balanced meal at dinner with protein, heathy fat and fiber, will you set up your body for an optimal sleep cycle. Ideally have dinner 4 hours before bed. I stick to getting in bed at 10pm so for me, this is 6 pm.
Avoid things that are going to negatively stimulate you in the evening, like too much sugar, or having more than one glass of wine. Alcohol turn to sugar and disrupts your sleep with the sugar crash. Avoid caffeine after 12 pm. These are some of the obvious things, I know. However I want to remind you that you are preparing for a good night’s sleep well before the sun goes down.
Now let’s get to the good stuff…
Natural Supplements to support a good nights sleep.
If you are having trouble falling asleep, Melatonin might be a good match for you. A recommended range is 0.5-2 mg of melatonin. This supplement will help you fall asleep.
If you find yourself waking up in the middle of the night, it could be due to stress. The stress hormone cortisol usually spikes between 6am and 8am to wake us up. Where as if you find your self waking up at 3am. or 4am. this could be that you need to support your body with more relaxation techniques. Using adaptogenic herb like Holy Basil can help your body deal with stress. You can get it as a tea or in capsule form.
To help your body relax, you need adequate calcium and magnesium in your daily diet. A brand I use personally is Natural Vitality Natural Calm Diet Supplement, it calms nerves and relaxes muscles. Add some light journaling to complete your day or a bath and you will be in the mood to catch those zzzzz.
Valerian Root is a mild sedative and another option. I have not used this myself but I have seen it in many other articles from people I trust and for that reason I wanted to mention it.
5-htp Also known as 5-hydroxytryptophan. 5-htp is a precursor to serotonin and increases serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin is an important neurotransmitter that has many functions, one of which is to regulate sleep. When you are shopping for a sleep aid, see if you can find a product that has a blend of these things.
Another tip I have for your is to recommit to making sleep a priority in your life as best you can. I know that at certain times in our life, getting the full 7-9 hours just isn’t an option. We can make the most of what you do get by having the mind and body be relaxed.
Here is a related post about what lifestyle changes we can make to help us feel rested. Click her for that article!! 🙂
*Remember always consult your primary care physician as I am not a doctor and do not give medical advice.