Economic woes, daylight savings, work stress, family frenzies — there's no shortage of factors capable of interrupting our sleep time. Thankfully, there's also no shortage of strategies to help you rest easier. Here are six of my favorite surprising tactics that may help you get more shuteye.
- Get outside. Being in the daylight helps regulate your body's circadian rhythms, even if it's just for 30 minutes a day.
- Stop drinking water and booze a few hours before bedtime. Both will most likely make you wake up and have to pee, while alcohol can interfere with sleep and hunger patterns.
- Cut out the carbs. Avoid eating carb-heavy foods at least two hours before bed or more. According to Jillian Michaels in her new book, your ghrelin (hunger hormone) needs to be high in order to slip into deep sleep, but since carbs lower your ghrelin, they may stave off slumber.
For the remaining three,
- Shut off exercise before shuteye. Physical activity can promote deeper sleep, but make sure to wrap it up at least five hours before bedtime.
- Eat sleepy foods. Some foods may actually aid restful sleep, including milk, tuna, avocados, almonds, oats, and many more!
- Set a stopping point for coffee. Caffeine in the mornings is fine and, depending on the person, early afternoon coffees are OK, too. But definitely try to steer clear of coffee within eight hours of bedtime.