Sleep, the secret to EVERYTHING, including weight loss
Why is everyone talking about sleep with such great importance all of a sudden (or so it seems)? Books are flooding the shelves, magazine articles, television programmes, to tell us all about sleep and how to do it well!
Sleep significantly impacts how you look, feel and perform. A lack of quality sleep will affect your emotional wellbeing, being a healthy weight and overall immunity.
You could say it is a result of a generation where work/money/ambition was deemed more important than sleep, and that sleep was simply a waste of time. However, burn out and poor mental health has brought the importance of sleep to the forefront, and as a teacher of secondary school children who ‘in general’ place technology before sleep, must agree it is time to sing the benefits of sleep from the rooftops. There is so much more to sleep and if you would like a few tips to make sure you are reaping the benefits of great sleep, read on.
‘Sleep is a reparative state’
Simply, sleep allows your brain to take out the rubbish. Setting off a cleaning programme getting rid of all the biological waste built up in the day, it also helps us process our thoughts. The brain actually never switches off, and this understanding will help us recognise the magnificence and necessity of sleep. Without it, we not only get tired, we become ill.
Have you ever gone to bed with a question/problem, and then woken up with the answer? Jan Born, a dream scientist discovered that sleep is a crucial element in the creative process when we work at solving a problem and then sleep on it, we are far more likely to come up with a creative solution. Paul McCartney woke up with the melody to ‘Yesterday’ in his head, and was convinced he had heard it before and spent time searching for the original song. It seems that a day of work/study can support the foundations of creativity in the sleep. So, never despair at the lack of a solution before bedtime!
Napping may support your memory!
Mariano Sigman, the author of ‘The Secret of the Mind’ explains that during the ‘slow wave’, one of the first phases of sleep our memory is consolidated, which helps us remember what we have learned during the day. Now, because this happens in the first phases of sleep many believe a short nap is extremely helpful when we need to stabilise our memory and learn. A student exam revision strategy surely!
4 tips for having the best nights sleep
Neuroscience has a way to go the experts say, but it is fascinating that our unconscious seems to dictate so much more than maybe we realise. Bruce Lipton discusses the theory that we are taking in ideas/thoughts that are playing as we sleep. I personally know people who sleep with the TV on all night, the news will be playing, drama, goodness knows what else. It seems that we will benefit by having a good sleep routine and possibly reading something with positive thoughts before bed. If you have trouble sleeping, take a look at the tips below and see if you could start to introduce 1 or 2 into your routines. Also, if it is a long-term problem, develop self-awareness of your perception of sleep, do you affirm that you do not sleep well? Our mind is so powerful, saying it enough times, will convince your mind you do not sleep well (have a think about that one it can be a mind blower).
I have listed 4 tips below, and if you would like more information about making sure you and your family have quality sleep, please click on the links at the bottom.
1. Do not go to bed hungry, also a heavy refined carb meal or simple sugary foods will cause a blood sugar crash in the middle of the night waking you up and impacting the quality of your sleep
– A banana and a few walnuts with a relaxing herbal tea
-A warm banana mylk (blitz or mash banana into coconut/oat milk (or another PB milk), you can add a tsp of cacao/Ceylon cinnamon as an option or a small bowl of warm porridge
2. Avoid having any technology in the bedroom, including your phone
– You can still have your phone just outside the door or somewhere is it in hearing distance for an emergency call if necessary
Lumi lights are a super alarm clock, they will gradually lighten the room waking you up naturally (you can find them on Amazon, I have the basic one which is fantastic), this is so much better than being awakened in a deep phase of sleep making you feel more tired
3. Have your bedroom cool and dark
Too much light will obviously impact your sleep and so installing blackout blinds or curtains can keep the room dark
Most experts agree that a temperature between 18 and 24 degrees Celsius is ideal, and so do your best to keep things cool in your room
4. Move daily
– Exercise supports great sleep, especially if you move earlier in the day
– Create the habit of moving daily, walking, swimming, working out etc.
Sleep well everyone, much love, and health