One third of our life is spent sleeping, that’s a lot of time, and so investing into a new mattress and comfortable pillow is a good idea. We also know that turning your cellphone off, disconnecting from our electronics and shutting off the lights are healthy ways to get us prepared for sleep.
However what most of us don’t consider is quality downtime. How we start our days, dictate how we finish them. We stress all day and then wonder why we didn’t get a good nights rest.
It’s interesting because we help our children feel more at ease and comfortable by reserving time off at the end of the night before they go to bed to help them unwind. We make them a bath, read a book, we snuggle with them. But why is that we as adults don’t take off that same exclusive time for ourselves? We could listen to music, meditate, read a book, go for a walk or pillow talk with our partners; the point is that anything that will help calm our mind is a cornerstone of good sleep.
If you’re looking for a bedtime tea, which both tastes good and helps you sleep, look no further. Chamomile is the creme de la creme of nighttime teas, taking two or three teaspoons over a cup of boiling water will relax you and settle you right into bed. For the insomniacs that require something a little stronger, there is also valerian root, which is known by researchers to have sedative properties.
Then there is Lavender, the sweet scent of sleep. This is called aromatherapy and lavender has been used all the way back to roman times as the perfect remedy to promote sleep and relaxation. You can either use a drop of essential oil or fill a pouch with lavender and tuck it amongst the pillows to bask in the glory of its calming effects.
One herbal plant that is very effective is passionflower. This is my personal favorite for a good nights sleep especially when I know I’m going to have a stressful day coming up. It promotes the release of a neurotransmitter called GABA, which calms down that brain chatter and relaxes you. I find I get that deep restful sleep that I’m body and mind are aching for.
Magnesium deficiency is common and it can cause many sleep issues because your brain requires it to produce melatonin, the almighty sleep hormone. There are many forms of Magnesium and it is best to buy a supplement that contains Magnesium Glycinate as I consider it to be the most effective in also relaxing your muscles. It’s a go to mineral of choice for sleep.
Speaking of the almighty sleeping hormone, Melatonin is the first remedy people reach for when they can’t fall asleep. I would highly recommend that you first consider all these previous remedies, as you will not develop tolerance to them as you would with Melatonin. Most people suffering poor sleep also take much higher doses than necessary. Most supplements come in variety of strengths but I find that cutting the tablet in half or a quarter is many times just as effective.