Want to improve your sleep, enhance your digestion and boost your beauty and body?
Look no further than these 8 must-do hacks to get your body into “sleep mode.”
True beauty goes beyond skin deep (like the makeup we put on our face, or the moisturizers we use on our body).
Multiple lifestyle factors (like QUALITY sleep) matter for things like:
- Glowing skin
- Radiant energy
- Banished bloating
- Sparkling eyes
- An empowered mind
- And building lean, toned muscles and strength
In fact, did you know that when we get less than 6 hours of sleep, we have the same brain function as someone who is legally intoxicated, we experience MORE constipation and slow our metabolism down?
Improve your sleep and boost your beauty with these 8 “beauty sleep essential” steps:
- Candle Down
Going from alertness to complete deep sleep is unrealistic. Just like a morning routine can help you get into “wake” mode, the same thing applies to an evening routine for “sleep mode.” Dim the lights in your home, shut off screens, take a hot bath (warming your body relaxes your muscles) or do some relaxing yoga and meditation poses, read a book, connect with loved ones, journal and reflect—anything that “winds you down.”
The light from our screens is “short-wavelength-enriched,” (translation: it has a higher concentration of blue light than natural light). Blue Light suppresses our natural melatonin (our sleep-inducing hormone that helps us sleep) more than any other wavelength. When this happens, changes in sleep patterns mess with our natural sleep patterns— telling our body to “stay awake” rather than fall asleep. Bonus: Download: lux or “night shift” (iPhone or Android) on your electronics as well to help eliminate screen light, as well as wear orange tinted (blue-blocking) glasses.
- Think Happy Thoughts.
The last things we think about before bed can influence what we dream about (or the themes of our dreams). Put worry, anxiety and stress away for the day before bed with a simple prayer, meditation or journaling practice—releasing or surrendering any overwhelm, unsureness, stress or anxiousness to the universe.
- Warm Up, Then Cool Down
Take a warm shower to relax muscles and prepare for sleep, then cool it down. Since the body heats up (inside) over night, ensuring you are in a cool environment helps keep your body in deep sleep mode. Ideal temp is somewhere between 60 to 68 degrees (air condition or cooled home with fans or insulation).
- Black Out.
Just like blue light is not conducive to winding down at night, any hint of light while we actually sleep is not either (i.e. light seeping in through the windows from the street lights, your phone or alarm clock). Keep your body in deep sleep mode with some blackout curtains, covering any red or blue lights in the bedroom with a towel and/or an eye mask.
- Optimize Sleep Nutrition.
Neither being overly full or super hungry is ideal for most people prior to bedtime. So is it bad to eat close to bed time?! No! Research actually shows that eating a simple snack (such as some full-fat fermented yogurt or coconut yogurt, handful of raw almonds or walnuts, avocado, baked apple with coconut oil and cinnamon, scrambled eggs, salmon or turkey slices)—as opposed to a complex, mixed meal—before bed actually can benefit sleep! It all depends on how you feel and if you are truly hungry, honor your hunger. In addition, if you do happen to eat a later dinner (within an hour or two of bed-time), consider propping your head at an angle to allow the “north to south” process of digestion to occur more easily. Also, make sure your diet isn’t too low carb or low fat, as these types of diets can lead to trouble sleeping.
- Cut the Caffeine. Stick to one cup of quality coffee per day. Caffeine is a natural stimulant and stressor. If If you “need” more than that, chances are your circadian rhythms are not what they “should be.”
- Rise with the Sun.
Back in the day, the sun was the natural alarm clock for most folks. Since we no longer sleep outside, under the stars (and thanks to Edison and the lightbulb), lights often go on before the sun does. Aim to stick as close to your body’s natural circadian rhythms by “rising with the sun.” You have to check out this “Natural Sun”
Phillips Wake-Up Light Alarm —programmed to mimick the sun rising in your room (no matter what time you need to get up).