Sleep, along with exercise and nutrition, is one of the three pillars of a healthy body. Each pillar is as equally important as the others, and if even one of them is neglected, your body will never function to it’s true potential.

Adequate levels of sleep help to provide mental health, hormonal balance, and muscular recovery. You need to get enough sleep, which is 7-8 hours for most people.  

As mentioned, in my previous blogs, I’ve alluded to the  “fight or flight response”, which originates in our sympathetic nervous system.  Often, sleepless nights can be triggered by chronic elevated cortisol(stress) levels which prevents our minds and bodies from entering a deep state of rest and recovery. 

In our desperation to achieve proper sleep, many people turn to artificial sleep aide’s such as prescribed, pharmaceutical agents.  The problem with prescription sleep medication is that your being sedated and not sleeping. There’s a big difference to what happens in your brain when your sleeping compared to when you’re sedated.  For example, have you ever had an operation and been administered an anaesthetic?  You don't feel so great when you awake.

Let’s look at more healthier strategies to help gain a deep, restful sleep.

  • Avoid excessive caffeine intake as its stimulant effects last well beyond consumption.
  • Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. Your brain and body develop a natural circadian rhythm and learn that sleep is the next thing that needs to happen.
  • Turn off electronic devices one hour before bed. The light from these devices hinders our ability to produce important hormones that facilitate sleep.

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