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7 Natural Ways to Sleep Better Every Night

7 Natural Ways to Sleep Better Every Night

Do you tend to toss and turn at night? Many people struggle to fall asleep at night, and it can be frustrating. While you should talk to a doctor if your sleep problems persist, you can try some natural remedies. Here are seven natural methods to try for a better night’s rest.

1. Get the Right Amount of Sun

The right amount of sunlight on your body can help you get the best sleep quality. Most people associate the sun with skin damage, but the right dose, between five and 15 minutes daily, is a natural medicine for bone and sleep problems.

The UV rays your skin absorbs when you go outside increase vitamin D production making your bones healthier. When this natural light hits your eyes, it signals the body to adjust your internal clock or circadian rhythm to match your sleep-wake cycle with environmental cues. Sunlight is beneficial, provided you don’t overexpose yourself to it.

2. Drink Herbal Tea

Tea is one of the most enjoyed beverages in the world. Certain varieties, such as chamomile, valerian and maypop, are known for their sleep-modulating qualities.

Researchers found herbal tea to have an anxiolytic effect, which reduces anxiety and promotes calmness to relieve insomnia. In an animal study, mice that received teas at certain doses fell asleep faster and longer than the control group.

Brew a calming cup if you find yourself tossing and turning in bed.

3. Use Essential Oils

Essential oils are another popular remedy for sleep woes. Many are used in aromatherapy to relieve stress, which is often the cause of sleeping troubles. Your sense of smell or olfactory system is connected with your body and brain — aromatherapy takes advantage of this link to increase your sleepiness.

In an analysis of 10 randomized controlled trials involving 933 cancer patients with sleep problems, researchers found that lavender, peppermint, orange and chamomile essential oils significantly boosted their respite quality. These oils are recommended as complementary therapies to address inadequate shuteye.

4. Avoid Exposure to Artificial Light

Avoid overexposing your eyes to artificial light. Unlike natural sunlight, it disrupts your internal clock and reduces the production of melatonin — a hormone that regulates the sleep-wake cycle. It can also cause circadian rhythm sleep-wake disorders.

If you need to use light during the evening, opt for a dim red spectrum since it doesn't affect your body's clock. It promotes quality slumber by increasing melanin production and prevents sleep inertia or tiredness and disorientation in the morning — just ensure it isn't too bright.

5. Avoid Screen Time Before Bed

Your tablet or smartphone emits blue artificial light that can make you lose sleep. Based on studies, two or more hours of mindless scrolling on your phone can disrupt melatonin production and make rest elusive.

Turn off all your electronic devices at least an hour before hitting the sack, giving the body enough downtime to produce sleeping hormones and relax deeply. Read a book or choose relaxing activities that don't stimulate the brain, such as meditation. Deep and relaxing breaths can deactivate the sympathetic nervous system responsible for fight or flight mode, relaxing every part of your muscles to prepare for a night of good rest.

6. Skip Caffeine in the Afternoon

Coffee can undoubtedly help maintain high levels of energy. However, avoid it in the late afternoon, as caffeine can keep the brain alert and eyes open throughout the night.

On average, it takes four to six hours for the body to metabolize half of the caffeine you consumed and ease its effect on your system. Therefore, if you hit the hay at 10 p.m., your last cup of coffee should be by 4 p.m. If your body is more sensitive to stimulants, cut it out after lunch. Otherwise, switch to decaffeinated options.

7. Minimize Sugar Intake

What you eat affects your circadian rhythm and, by extension, the quality of your sleep. Sugar is a false energizer. It gives you a quick burst of energy by elevating your glucose levels fast, stimulating the brain and causing insomnia.

Researchers studied 100 university students to determine the connection between high-sugar diets and sleep problems. They found that only 17% of students had good sleep, and the majority who were snooze-deprived consumed more added sugars.

A high-sugar diet is associated with poor sleep quality. Reduce the amount of sweets you eat to have a better night’s rest.

Fix Sleep Troubles With Natural Solutions

Before you reach for a bottle of pills, try these natural methods to solve your sleep challenges. They don’t have side effects and will benefit your health in the long term. Enjoy uninterrupted and quality rest every night.

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