Have you said “bye bye” to sleeping through the night?
Are you feeling exhausted or “running on stress hormones” all day?
I know I have found myself there many times. It’s a horrible feeling and it can feel almost impossible to shake at times.
But do not fear, if you have felt this way (or currently do feel like this) I have some great tips (and an amazing recipe) for you!
The science of sleep... while fascinating, is complicated and growing.
We ALL NEED Sleep!
We know that.
Sleep is this daily thing that we all do and yet we're just beginning to understand all of the ways it helps us and all of the factors that can affect it.
We live in such a busy world today, that unfortunately, more and more of us are chronically sleep deprived.
But that lack of sleep affects just about everything in your body and mind!!!
People who get less sleep tend to be at higher risk for so many health issues like diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancer; not to mention effects like slower metabolism, weight gain, hormone imbalance, and inflammation. And don't forget the impact lack of sleep can have on moods, memory and decision-making skills.
Did you know that lack of sleep may even negate the health benefits of your exercise program? (Gasp!)
So don’t think that skipping on sleep to add exercise in is necessarily the healthiest choice.
But really, what aspect of health does sleep not affect???
It’s important to know the three main main purposes of sleep:
To restore our body and mind. Our bodies repair, grow and even “detoxify” our brains while we sleep.
To improve our brain's ability to learn and remember things, technically known as “synaptic plasticity”.
To conserve some energy so we're not just actively “out and about” 24-hours a day, every day.
With all of this in mind, do you know how much sleep adults need?
It's less than your growing kids need but you may or may not be surprised that it's recommended that all adults get 7 - 9 hours a night.
Try not to skimp! I know for some of us there might be other factors coming into play for how much sleep we get... such as kids (or at least that is usually my case).
But don't worry, I have you covered with a bunch of actionable tips listed right here below.
Tips for better sleep
The biggest tip is definitely to try to get yourself into a consistent sleep schedule. Make it a priority and you're more likely to achieve it. This means turning off your lights 8 hours before your alarm goes off. Seven. Days. A. Week. I know weekends can easily throw this off but by making sleep a priority for a few weeks your body and mind will adjust and thank you for it.
Balance your blood sugar throughout the day. That means eat less refined and processed foods and more whole foods (full of blood-sugar-balancing fiber). Choose the whole orange instead of the juice (or orange-flavored snack). Make sure you're getting some protein every time you eat.
During the day get some sunshine and exercise. These things tell your body it's daytime; time for being productive, active and alert. By doing this during the day it will help you wind down more easily in the evening.
Cut off your caffeine and added sugar intake after 12pm. Whole foods like fruits and veggies are fine, it's the “added” sugar we're minimizing. Yes, this is going to to include your beloved afternoon coffee or chai latte. Both caffeine and added sugar can keep your mind a bit more active than you want it to be come evening. (HINT: I have a great caffeine-free chai latte recipe for you below!).
Have a relaxing bedtime routine that starts 1 hour before your “lights out” time (that is 8 - 10 hours before your alarm is set to go off). This would include dimming your artificial lights, nixing screen time and perhaps reading an (actual, not “e”) book or having a bath.
So how many of these tips can you start implementing today?
Do you feel like you could maybe use some support with this?
No, problem! I have your back!
One of the best things I ever did for my sleep and overall health was participating in the Shred10 Program!
Now, if you aren’t familiar with the Shred10 Program, you can find it on my website here.
You know all those tips I listed above? I am talking about setting a routine to get 8 hours of sleep, watching sugar, getting more fiber, having healthy sources of lean protein, making sure to stay active, and watching caffeine... ALL of these are areas we work on during a Shred10!
I know when we hear the word Shred10, it might sound like a weight loss program, but actually it’s a healthy lifestyle program. 10 days of shredding habits that aren’t always good for our health and instead focusing on making healthy choices with food, activity, sleep, and for our overall health.
Myself and the Health Made Simple Team run a Shred10 program EVERY SINGLE MONTH! We typically start the first Monday of the month, so now is a perfect time to get ready for our next Shred10!
Want to chat and learn more about it? Great! Set up a FREE 20-minute discovery call with me and we can see how the Shred10 program can help you, your sleep, and your overall health!
AND don’t forget to enjoy this Shred10 friendly Recipe!
Recipe (Caffeine-free latte for your afternoon “coffee break”): Caffeine-Free Chai Latte
1 bag of rooibos chai tea (rooibos is naturally caffeine-free)
2 cups of boiling water
1 tablespoon tahini
1 tablespoon almond butter (creamy is preferred)
2 dates (optional)
Cover the teabag and dates (if using) with 2 cups of boiling water and steep for a few minutes.
Discard the tea bag & place tea, soaked dates, tahini & almond butter into a blender.
Blend until creamy.
Serve and Enjoy!
Tip: You can try this with other nut or seed butters to see which flavor combination you like the best. Cashew butter anyone?