How to support restful sleep

 

woman sleeping

The perfect day to help your night


Getting a good night s sleep for some people takes a bit more effort than just drawing the curtains and snuggling under the duvet….

However, I find that for many of us, a few changes in our daily routine can make all the difference. Here are my suggestions:-

  • Morning light and exercise/movement – Do this when you get up  Get some daylight for 20 minutes so that the morning light touches your retina to stimulate cortisol – your ‘get up and go’ hormone!. If possible get it by going outdoors rather than through a window
  • Flush your toxins – have a mug of warm water, with a squeeze of lemon or a teaspoon of Apple Cider Vinegar.
  • Protein at breakfast – the important thing to remember is that you should eat some protein with every meal. Start with your breakfast. See my recipe for Overnight oats below which is a great balance of complex carbohydrates and protein.
  • If you enjoy a coffee, now is the time to have it
  • If you feel your energy is flagging mid-morning, just have a few nuts and piece of fruit, and try a herbal tea instead of more coffee and a sugary snack
  • Get up from your desk and walk for 10 minutes a few times during the day
  • Healthy lunch –) Again think about protein, vegetables and complex carbs -Try some rainbow salad, a tub of hummus and a piece of rye sourdough bread
  • Avoid caffeine after lunch
  • 4pm snack – maybe some nuts and a piece of fruit
  • 7pm . Eat dinner now if you can. Maybe some Omega 3 rich baked salmon and some sweet potato wedges with a spinach salad and a green vegetable with raita. (Recipe below ) Some carbohydrate at night is good as it supports the production of serotonin which then converts to sleep inducing melatonin
  • No blue light after 8pm. So, try to avoid using your phone or tablet – or at least dip down the light. Try the yellow tinted glasses you can buy which block out the blue light ( Try Cyxus). Remember, blue light makes your brain think it is morning, thereby preventing the production of the hormone melatonin which helps you sleep.
  • Epsom salts bath. This really relaxes your muscles and it makes your body heat move to your extremities thus cooling down your core temperature, aiding sleep
  • Magnesium support – Magnesium is a mineral known as nature’s tranquilliser. Although it is found in foods like leafy greens, nuts and seeds, it is thought that many of us have low levels, which can be a factor in insomnia. Try talking @100- 300 mg of magnesium citrate or glycinate about thirty minutes before bed.  Many supplement companies produce magnesium supplements. I’ve recently been using one from a company called MAG 365, which you add to hot water to increase bio availability. The passion fruit flavour is delicious!
  • 10-10.30 Go to bed. Make sure your bedroom is cool and dark. I always use an eye mask to make sure that all light is kept out. Write 3 good things that have happened in the day in your gratitude journal
  • If sleep still evades you then have a tryptophan rich snack e.g. oatcake with banana or some warm oat milk
  • Remember that routine is the most important factor in all of this – our bodies like routine – so trying to establish a good pattern of bedtime can be vital in establishing better sleep
  • Sweet Dreams
Tricia s overnight oats with pic

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Tandoori Salmon with Spinach Raita