Sleep is a crucial component of good health. While you sleep, your body is not only experiencing rest and relaxation; it is hard at work repairing tissues, clearing wastes, and manufacturing critical hormones. Preparing your mind and body for a restorative night’s sleep is therefore critical to ensuring you are successful at achieving the slumber you need. Here are 12 tips to both set the stage for a good night’s rest and encourage the healthy habits that will serve your body well.
12. Stick to a Consistent Bedtime
It is tempting to celebrate the end of a workweek by staying up late on Friday night and sleeping in the next morning. However, providing your body with a consistent schedule for sleeping and waking helps to keep your circadian rhythms at an even pace. Your circadian rhythm, or sleep/wake cycle, refers to the fluctuation in hormones that prepare your body for sleep or wakefulness. According to the National Sleep Foundation, your circadian rhythm works best when you go to sleep and arise at regular times each day. Meanwhile, disruptions in your sleep schedule can result in daytime drowsiness and nighttime insomnia.
11. Choose the Right Snack
In general, you will sleep better and avoid packing on extra pounds if you refrain from nighttime noshing. However, if you find yourself needing an evening snack, be mindful about the choices you make. For nighttime snacks, Bistro MD recommends choosing foods that contain protein, are low in calories, and are rich in fiber. Healthy options include a serving of Greek yogurt or a slice of turkey and dab of hummus wrapped in a whole wheat tortilla or lettuce leaf. A banana with a dollop of nut butter, a serving of cottage cheese, or a handful of nuts are other healthy options.