5 Tips for Better Sleep

Article posted in: Diet & Nutrition

I can’t think of too many things that make me feel better than a great night’s sleep. Waking up feeling fully rested—mentally, physically, emotionally—is a pretty rare thing. As a rule I sleep okay. But I’m talking about more than okay. I’m talking about the kind of sleep so deep you don’t even feel as if you rolled over, but that leaves you singing in the shower while the coffee brews. It’s something I want every night. As should everybody on a weight loss program, because good sleep and a healthy weight are definitely linked. So I did a little research, and came up with these 5 great tips for a better sleep.

  • Ban all electronic devices from your bedroom. Studies have shown that tablets, laptops and mobile phones stimulate the brain in a way that delays the release of calming neurotransmitters that make sleep possible. The longer you lie in bed answering work emails, the harder it will be to fall asleep.
  • Try a little bit of stretching or yoga before getting into bed. Moving your muscles in a gentle fashion will help relax your mind, which will make it a little easier to relax into sleep. You can do a full-on yoga move like downward dog, or something as simple as reaching for your toes and holding for a count of 10 after you’ve slipped into your PJs.
  • Try a glass of warm milk. Here’s yet another thing your mom was right about: A glass of warm milk can help you sleep better because the tryptophan it contains has been shown to help induce restful sleep.
  • Banish caffeine after lunch. Caffeine sneaks into your diet in a lot of ways. Some herbal teas contain caffeine, as do some sodas and sweets. Read labels carefully. And if you’re having trouble sleeping, skip drinking any kind of coffee after noon.
  • Slowly lower the lights. Bright light tells your brain it needs to stay awake; by dimming the lights in your bedroom, you’ll let it know that it’s okay to get ready to sleep. If you like to read in bed, find a soft light level that lets you see the pages but doesn’t jar the brain.