Get Your Sleep Cycles Back on Track!
Clinical Herbalist Reviewed on December 8, 2011 by Paulina Nelega, RH
What Can You Do to Improve Sleep Quality – Naturally?
Practicing simple “sleep hygiene” can help prepare you for a more restful and refreshing sleep each evening:
• Stop caffeine consumption by 2 p.m. (caffeine has a half-life of 5-6 hours, so we need to give it time to get out of our system)
• Unplug from the TV or computer at least 1 hour before bedtime (preferably longer). This will give your nervous system a chance to rebalance from the electromagnetic stimulation it has been receiving.
• Consider using a program on your computer that automatically adjusts the lighting on your display to the time of day (such as f.lux) – changes it to a warm (pinkish-toned) light in the evening, instead of blue light. Blue light has been shown to negatively affect sleep patterns if used in the evening (suitable for morning and earlier day use).
• Enjoy a relaxing bath scented with your favorite essential oils, or infuse them in your bedroom – lavender, orange blossom (neroli), jasmine, and rose are particularly calming. Jasmine has even been shown to be as effective as valium and commonly prescribed sleep medications.
• Read an uplifting or inspiring book before you turn out the light.
• Do a short meditation.
• Focus on gentle, mindful breathing.
Also consider Natural Sleeping Essentials, a gentle, all-natural sleep support formula that helps to calm the mind and relax the body. Along with Chamomile and Valerian, Natural Sleeping Essentials also contains melatonin, tryptophan, and niacin, three important sleep-supportive nutrients that help your body to re-establish its natural, healthy sleep cycles.
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan