Sleep is critical in optimizing your health, however often times I see in clients that it is not prioritized to the same degree as the diet.
Quality sleep is important for a number of reasons:
Stress management (nervous system regulation, levels of mood boosting neurotransmitters)
Hormone health (including those related to stress – cortisol, and appetite control – insulin, ghrelin, leptin)
Blood sugar stabilization and levels of inflammation
Just like we need quality food sources in the form of nutrient-dense animal products, we NEED quality sleep. And I would NOT recommend running to go buy the latest sleep tracker to monitor this. The constant surround of tracking devices/EMF exposure isn’t helpful when it comes to catching those Zzzs.
Instead, here are some SIMPLE changes to make to improve your sleep quality:
Aim for regular wake and sleep times each day – be as consistent as possible!
Waking up with the sun is helpful to improve your natural circadian rhythm
Minimize blue light exposure
At least 2-3 hours before bed, minimize screen time - use of your cell phone, laptops, tablets, etc.
Wear blue light blockers daily, starting when the sun goes down
Set an alarm on your phone at the time of sunset to put them on, keeping them on until you go to sleep
Minimize electromagnetic field exposure
Turn off your Wi-Fi when sleeping
you can purchase an Alexa Smart Plug to have it turned off automatically as you get into bed each night
At least 2-3 hours before bed, minimize electronic devices of any kind
Purchase EMF shielding stickers for these devices (cell phone, laptop, tablet, etc) to minimize EMF exposure during the daily as well
Incorporate meditation and/or breath work prior to sleep to calm the nervous system
This will induce relaxation and prime your body for sleep
Avoid exercise in the afternoon or at night as this will affect your adrenal system as opposed to signaling your body that it is time to wind down
Ensure gut healing with nutrient-dense animal products
95% of the serotonin of your body is produced in the gut! Why is this important? Serotonin is a precursor for melatonin.
Keep it dark by using an eye-mask or black-out curtains
This has been a game changer for me! Waking during the night is a thing of the past simply by wearing an eye mask every night
Stay cool by lowering the room temperature or wearing less clothing to bed
A fan helps keep you cool AND provides white noise
What about supplements or sleep-aids?
Consider adding Magnesium glycinate and/or glycine powder
Bone broth is an excellent source of glycine; consider adding as a “night cap” or at dinner
Avoid melatonin supplements and sleep-aid medications; we want to increase these levels naturally versus signaling to the body to slow down/stop producing it on its own
Vitamin D and melatonin work antagonistically – when Vitamin D is high, melatonin is low. Get your sunlight early in the day and take your Vitamin D supplement first thing in the morning to keep Vitamin D high during the day and low at night. This will keep melatonin highest at night when you need it the most to help improve sleep.
If you are looking for a partner to help you achieve your optimal health, book an appointment with me, I am here to help!