How long has it been since the last time you woke up feeling refreshed and rejuvenated? If you can’t remember you probably have some sleep-related issues that should be resolved. Luckily there are a few simple yet effective changes you can make that are inexpensive and easy. Taking these simple steps seriously and consistently is the key factor that will get you on the right track quickly.
Did you know that if you jogged for just 30 minutes a day you would be healthier than 90 percent of Americans? Exercise will also help you sleep better at night. When you exercise your body releases feel-good chemicals. The endorphins that are created affect many parts of your body. These chemicals help you feel relaxed throughout the day and regulate energy production. It also helps relieve stress and anxiety that could potentially keep you up at night. You’ve had those nights where you toss and turn and think about one thing or another. Working out regularly, even if it’s just a half hour jog every day, opens up blood passage ways that can make sleep more relaxing. Be careful not to exercise within 3 hours of sleep. It’s better to exercise in the morning to benefit from an increased heart rate throughout the day.
A common mistake people make is exercising before bed. The increased heart rate pumps the blood at such high rates that it can keep you up at night. You may be burning calories and reducing fat, but you’re also keeping yourself up at night. Try to keep exercise and strenuous physical activity at 3 hours before bedtime or more.
Keep a Regular Schedule
No matter how demanding your job may be, it’s important to maintain a regular sleep schedule. That means sleeping and waking up at about the same time every night. Ideally this would entail sleeping when the sun is down and being awake during the daytime.
People who work night shifts will have the most difficulty keeping this rhythm but it can be done. The key is to be in complete darkness during sleep and be in the light when awake. If you work overnight shifts this can be accomplished with special light bulbs and thick blinds. Coordinate your meals so that they fit regular eating patterns as you would if you were awake during the day. Some very serious long-term health problems can occur if a proper sleep rhythm is not maintained. Transitioning from a nightshift to a dayshift will take your body approximately a month to readjust to the time difference.
One must be well disciplined to keep a regular schedule, but it’s not impossible.
This can’t be understated. A balanced diet goes a long way in your health and your sleep. A proper diet leads to reduced weight and the healthier things that are put in your body, you get equal amounts of rest and sleep out of that. Consider this. When you put high fat foods and foods high in simple carbohydrates, your body needs to work extra to digest some of that food in order to run through the natural digestion process. As your body’s metabolism tries to break it down, there is a level of discomfort that your body experiences preventing you from falling asleep – or at the very least it makes sleeping uncomfortable. When you eat fresh vegetables and fruit, reduce the amount you eat, and watch don’t overdo it on the carbs and protein, you’ll experience better, prolonged sleep.
It is likely you haven’t experienced a full night’s rest where you wake up completely focused, refreshed, and wonderful in quite some time. Improve your sleep and start to make improvements in your life with just a few easy steps.
Carol Carter is nutritionist and currently associated with SleepDisorders.com. She often writes health-related articles. Apart from writing, she loves to cook, read and at times go for a walk with pet dog.