What is sleep and why we need it?
Have you ever asked yourself why we need sleep? Amazingly even scientists do not have a concrete answer. There are many theories, but what we do know is that sleep is vital for our health and wellbeing and that 6-8 hours of sleep is recommended per night.
With our demanding lifestyles and the use of modern technology sleeping problems are very common. According to the American Sleep Association:
- 50-70 million Americans have a sleeping disorder
- 30% of adult Americans have experienced insomnia
- 1550 fatalities on the road are a result of sleeping at the wheel
How anxiety causes sleep problems
Stress and anxiety is a major contributor to our sleeping quality. Have you ever felt so tired, you get into bed and then your mind is just racing back and forth about what you have to do tomorrow etc? This is very common and a form of anxiety and there are ways to help reduce anxiety before bed. Below are 5 great hack to a better night sleep:
1 – Ashwagandha Powder
Referred to as the best natural sleep aid supplement, Ashwagandha is an Ayurveda herb and an adaptogen which means it helps the body deal with stress. A study in 2017 showed Ashwagandha to aid sleep inducement and quality of sleep. It does this by reducing cortisol levels making you feel calmer and relaxed.
2 – Reading Before Bed
According to a study by the University of Sussex, reading before bed can help reduce stress and anxiety. The participants of the study had their stress levels raised and then they attempted to reduce them by reading, listening to music, drinking tea or coffee, playing video games and taking a walk. It concluded reading as the most effective. This can be because it helps slow down the heart rate and being immersed in a book can take our minds off our daily stresses.
3 – 4-7-8 Breathing Technique
This is an amazing breathing technique that can instantly make you feel more relaxed and gives your organs and tissues a boost of oxygen. Method:
- Sit or lie down comfortably
- Let out all the air in your lungs
- Breath in for 4 seconds through your nose
- Hold your breath for 7 seconds
- Exhale for 8 seconds parting your lips
Do this for up to 4 cycles and see the great effects.
4 – Don’t Calculate
Have you ever had a scenario where you get to bed nice and early, you close your eyes but you just keep tossing and turning and can’t sleep, you look at your watch and calculate you will have 7 hours sleep if you fall asleep now. You close your eyes again but still you cannot sleep you pay a visit to the bathroom, look at the clock again and you realise you only have 4 hours of sleep. Then you think about how you will only have 4 hours of sleep and how tired you will be tomorrow. Clock watching creates anxiety and stress, so this should be avoided.
5 – Darken Your Bedroom
Artificial light can affect sleep quality and blue lights from phones and TVs can actually stop the production of melatonin which helps us sleep. Darkening the room will help stimulate melatonin production and help you get a better night’s sleep.
Sleep is often overlooked and compensated when managing all the tasks of daily life, but it is vital for our wellbeing and is just as important as eating well and exercising.
If you are struggling to sleep try natural sleep remedies like Organic Ashwagandha powder as medication has adverse side effects.
A great tip when looking for the best organic Ashwagandha powder is to ensure it only contains the root part of the herb, as the leaves are toxic.
Using some or all of these techniques can help you get a better night’s sleep resulting in higher energy levels, improved focus and a stronger immune system. Also to note when
|||American Sleeping Association , “Sleep Statistics,” [Online]. Available: https://www.sleepassociation.org/about-sleep/sleep-statistics/.|
|||NCBI, “Triethylene glycol, an active component of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) leaves, is responsible for sleep induction,” 16 February 2017. [Online]. Available: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5313221/.|
|||Telegraph, “Reading-can-help-reduce-stress,” 3 October 2019. [Online]. Available: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/health/news/5070874/Reading-can-help-reduce-stress.html.|
|||A. Gotter, “What Is the 4-7-8 Breathing Technique?,” 20 April 2018. [Online]. Available: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/health/news/5070874/Reading-can-help-reduce-stress.html.|