From the hustle & grind girls themselves, we get it -- we’re busy, we don’t want to “waste” time sleeping. We’ll stay up just an hour or two getting some more done- but actually, a good night’s sleep sets us up for a successful next day.
Dr. Sara Gottfried notes that “sleep is when the lymphatic system shampoos your brain, removing toxins and debris, and when the wear-and-tear hormones (e.g., cortisol) are put back into balance with the growth-and repair hormones (e.g., growth hormone).”
Sleep is so important from an energy, cognition and productivity standpoint, as well as for our immune system, preventing weight gain and hormone balance. A single poor night of sleep can affect our productivity, mood, anxiety, and eating habits not only the next day but the upcoming following days as well.
Sleep can affect the hormones that control feelings of hunger and of fullness -- it can also trigger the release of insulin. It has even been noted that one night of poor sleep leaves us with a blood sugar and insulin resistance imbalance. It also leaves the body in a state of stress or cortisol, our stress hormone.
When many of us are suffering from exhaustion, we often resort to extra coffee or sweet treats -- which will end up resulting in blood sugar crashes throughout the day. Let's treat the cause, not the symptom!
Here are 5 easy tips for getting your best night’s sleep. This can vary for everyone but here are our general guidelines for a hormone-happy nighttime routing:
Limiting screen time at least 30 minutes to an hour before bed.
As you get more comfortable without your screen, try to push that to an hour to 2 hours before bed. All of the lights blasting from our screens can actually mess with our circadian rhythm and make our body think it's day time, when it is actually night time- as a result, our body will stay powered on, instead of beginning to power off. Additionally, turn on your devices’ nighttime mode. This allows your phone to automatically turn off some of the blue light at a certain time every single night.
Supplement with magnesium
Studies have even shown magnesium’s ability to play a vital role in supporting deep sleep. Magnesium can help stabilize the body’s stress system as well as increase GABA, a neurotransmitter that promotes quality sleep.
Airplane or Do Not Disturb Mode
Turn your phone to the Airplane Mode and Do Not Disturb setting. A recent survey showed that 71% of Americans sleep with their phones near them. Of course this makes sense! Our phones work as clocks and alarms for so many of us. If you rely on your phone’s alarm, don’t worry- this won’t stop it from going off.
By turning on Do Not Disturb it prevents us from being bothered by notifications that don’t need our attention at the moment and only keeps us distracted from falling asleep. Since we generally keep our phones by our bodies, airplane mode also prevents EMF Radiation exposure.
Avoid eating 2-3 hours before bed.
We eat throughout the day to fuel ourselves. At night, our body is already starting to wire down. When we bombard our system with food late at night, we’re throwing our body’s system out of whack and can actually lead to difficulties falling asleep because our bodies are working to break the food down.
Make your bedroom primarily for sleep.
Lastly, make sure to treat your room like a sleeping sanctuary and keep the bedroom dark and quiet. Any small exposure to light can actually create a bigger disturbance than we would think. Try black out shades as well as a sleeping eye mask.
It’s so important to take care of yourself through sleep. Getting into a nightly routine will help your body recognize its time to start wiring down, and will help you maintain optimal sleep hygiene.