Published on: 11/12/18
Natural Remedies for a Good Night’s Sleep
1. Develop a regular sleeping pattern
The first, and arguably most important factor of getting a good night’s sleep is the development of a healthy sleeping pattern.
Going to bed at the same time, every night of the week will help to establish your internal sleep/wake clock (also known as our circadian rhythm ) and helps to reduce the amount of tossing and turning required to fall asleep.
Our body functions on a set loop, aligning itself with sunrise and sunset and studies have shown that being consistent with your sleeping and waking times can significantly improve sleep quality over the long-term.
As we already know, exercise is vital to maintaining a healthy lifestyle as well as treating a number of health conditions and research has now confirmed that we can add sleeping issues to that list.
A study conducted by researchers from Northwestern University’s Department of Neurobiology and Physiology revealed that previously sedentary adults who got aerobic exercise four times a week improved their sleep quality from poor to good.
Participants in the study also reported fewer depressive symptoms, increased vitality, and less sleepiness during the daytime.
However, make sure you finish your workout several hours before going to bed so that you’re not too energized, before bed and can get a good night’s sleep.
3. Maintain a healthy diet
While we always advise a healthy, well-balanced diet that contains plenty of raw fruits and vegetables, it is also vital that we reduce or eliminate entirely our intake of foods and drinks that contain caffeine such as coffee, tea, soft drinks and chocolate.
While many of us (including this writer) have our main meal at the end of the day, research now shows that it is healthier for our last meal to be lighter than the others and not to eat at least 3 hours before bedtime.
4. Increase bright light exposure during the day
As we already mentioned, our body has a natural time-keeping clock known as our circadian rhythm. This affects our brain, body, and hormones while helping us to stay awake and also letting us know when it’s time to hit the sack.
To keep our circadian rhythm healthy, we need plenty of natural sunlight or bright light during the day. The helps to improve our energy levels in the daytime as well as helping to maintain a higher quality of sleep at night.
For sufferers of insomnia, research has shown that bright light exposure helped to improve both sleep quality and duration while also reducing the time it took patients to fall asleep.
5. Dim your lights in the evening
Our bodies naturally respond to darkness, as this stimulates hormone secretions, particularly melatonin which helps to promote restful sleep, but if we have a lot of bright lights on at home when it’s dark outside, our bodies can become confused.
Many of us still continue to use smartphones, tablets, laptops and tv’s right up until bedtime, it's little wonder that we are beginning to see more and more issues with sleep quality.
Blue light is the worst type of light to be exposed to before bed and is emitted in large amounts from electronic devices like smartphones and computers, which help trick your bodies into thinking it’s daytime.
Try to reduce your time in front the screen, particularly in the evening and avoid all bright lights for at least 1-2 hours before bedtime.
6. Cut down on those catnaps!
While many of us are big fans of the power nap, long or irregular napping during the day can negatively affect your sleep at nighttime.
Studies have shown that sleeping during the day can confuse our internal body clock, resulting in more difficulties falling asleep at night.
While this really does depend on the individual, you might want to reconsider your daytime nap if you are having problems sleeping at night.
7. Don't consume caffeine late in the day
Caffeine is consumed by up to 90% of the US population and is a known stimulant of our nervous system. When consumed in the evening, studies indicate that it may have a detrimental effect on our sleep.
Caffeine remains in our bloodstream for up to 8 hours so drinking large amounts of tea or coffee after 4 pm is not recommended, especially if you are having problems with sleeping at night.
If like this writer, you love coffee too much to give it up in the evening, stick with the decaf to help prevent a night of tossing and turning.
8. CBD for improved sleep?
Recent studies have shown that CBD for sleep has shown some potentially significant benefits, with studies suggesting that CBD has powerful anxiolytic effects in both animal and human test subjects.
Further studies indicate that there are maybe benefits to using CBD for sleep, as it can potentially aid the stage of sleep known as REM sleep.
Back in 2012, a study conducted on mice showed that CBD could be used effectively to regulate the REM sleep of mice by reducing their anxiety levels. Anxiety is thought to be one of the major factors for those who suffer from insomnia and a lack of high-quality sleep.
With these studies now indicating the potential benefits of CBD for pain and anxiety, there is a genuine hope that CBD for sleep could be the answer to millions who continue to suffer from sleep-related health issues.
9. Stop smoking cigarettes
Great advice for any time of day, but research has indicated a litany of potential health problems that could affect your ability to sleep at night.
Smoking is known to exacerbate sleep apnea and other breathing disorders like asthma, which also reduces sleep quality.
There are literally no benefits to smoking tobacco, so quit while you can and you’ll be amazed at how your sleep might improve.
10. Make your bedroom a kingdom for sleep!
Getting a good night’s sleep can be influenced by many factors and one that is often overlooked is the actual space we sleep in.
One study that investigated the bedroom environment of women revealed that around 50% of participants reported improved sleep quality when reductions in both noise and lighting were applied to their sleeping environments.
To make the most of your bedroom space, try to minimize external noise and artificial lights like digital alarm clocks and smartphones.
Make your bedroom a kingdom of sleep - make sure you have a good mattress, comfortable pillows and try to eliminate all forms of blue light.
Getting a solid night is so important to our health and wellbeing - the science has suggested that getting our heads down should be a priority. So, it is our responsibility to cut back on our addictions to technology, to eat better, exercise more and give much more importance to our sleeping habits.
Your health really does depend on it.
Disclaimer: Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of Endoca and its staff. This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or cure. Endoca CBD products have not been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).