Helping LS26 to feel fitter and healthier! – with Angela Graham
How much quality sleep do we actually achieve and how much do we need?
So what time did you go to bed last night ? Did you sleep between 10pm-6am? Did you go to loo or have a snack or drink in the early hours? Did you have nightmares’ or interrupted sleep? Did you wake before the alarm and jump out of bed ready for your new day?
Most of us are aware of some of the positives with regards to achieving a good night sleep but not so concerned with the side affects. It can be seen that they can be pretty serious. Sleep is so underrated yet we rely on this for our survival. Most people are too busy for ‘me’ time which affects the quality and amount of sleep.
In this article we have a great list of tips which will guarantee health and wellbeing improvements, even if you start with just one.
Firsty, the benefits of sleep:
1. The spine elongates, realigns and discs decompress.
2. Heart and breathing rate reduces giving the heart and lungs a well deserved rest.
3. Collagen increases and repairs damaged skin.
4. Muscles and tissue repair.
5. Immune system gets a boost.
6. Digestive system gets a rest.
7. Improves memory.
8. Live longer.
9. Reduces inflammation. ( which can be linked with most diseases)
10. Improves mood and decreases anxiety.
And secondly, don’t forget the side effects of poor sleep hygiene
1. Impaired cognitive ability
2. Premature ageing.
3. Weight gain
4. Lowered libido
5. Sleep deprivation will increase risk of disease/death.
6. Can contribute to depression and anxiety.
7. Can lead to drowsiness, accidents and injuries.
8. Adrenal Fatigue.
9. Can lead to forgetfulness.
10. Can weaken the immune system.
Below is a list of my top tips to help improve slumber; in turn catapulting other health, fitness and wellbeing goals.
* Zone exercises before bed, Inhale through the open nostril (right) with the tongue at the roof of the mouth. Switch nostril (left) to exhale and let the tongue rest along the jaw. Then repeat, inhale in the left and exhale through the right.
* Limit coffee through out the day and do not drink after 3pm latest. Ideally make the last coffee around lunch time.
* Avoid a large meal before bed. Small snacks may be ok. Listen to your body.
* No alcohol before bed, ideally the whole day.
* Try a ‘sleepy drink’ before bed instead of tea, coffee, alcohol, pop or herbal teas. ( this recipe taken from David Wolfe FB )
* No blue lights after 8pm ( phones, tablets, computers ) unless you are wearing amber glasses and have F.lux on the screen.
* Have mood lighting to represent the sun setting. Ideally Himalayan salt lamps and tea lights.
* No news before bed and no serious/stressful discussions
* Eat to your ‘metabolic type’ to avoid blood sugar peaks and drops in the day
* If you are tired though the day and need a snooze, allow 20 mins only and use a specific snooze app like pzizz
* Invest in a lumie light clock to send you to sleep and wake you up with a natural light. This will improve stress levels waking to a gradual light/sun and help to stimulate melatonin by gradual dimming of the lamp (sunset)
I am a fan of SMART goals so simply chose one and see how you feel. Everyone is unique and will respond to different things so I encourage you to try a few different ones and then build up to a couple of days being mindful of things that may affect sleep.
Finally, for all of you like a sleepy drink, why not try this:
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 nob of ginger sliced
1 cup of coconut milk
Boil all together for 30-60 seconds and simmer for 5.
Add optional honey at the end.
These are all organic ingredients
*Date for the diary:11-17 March, National Sleep Awareness Week
To find out more about Angela, please visit her website here – www.angelagrahamvitality.co.uk