When we are in our twenties, we seem to never need sleep. We can stay out all night with friends, knock back a grande mocha latte, with an energy drink chaser, and then head straight off to class. Our bodies seem endlessly resilient, putting up with no regular sleep pattern with the greatest of ease.
And then we get older. We have babies and try to make it through the next decade or so with no sleep at all. Suddenly everything that we took for granted about sleep seems to come back to haunt us, and our metabolisms are completely shutting down. We start to realise just why sleep is so important.
As you move through your life you might start to realise that you have more and more things you are trying to juggle. Your body may not seem quite so willing to bounce back, and it might need a little bit more help to get balanced. Fortunately, there are some great natural products to get you back into rhythm and help improve your sleep.
Why is sleep so important?
Sleep helps your cells to regenerate
While you are sleeping your body is restoring and regenerating itself. Your muscles are growing, your body is healing and replenishing, your tissues are repairing and your hormones are being created. You need to be asleep and resting your body to allow these all-important activities to go on.
When you have less sleep your body increases in stress and inflammation, making you more susceptible to illness and disease. Better and more regular sleep patterns are shown to reduce your likelihood of chronic health conditions like heart disease and stroke.
Sleep is great for your skin
You have probably figured out already that when you are tired, your skin looks terrible. It lacks buoyancy, colour and light. As we said above, while you are sleeping your cells regenerate, and this of course includes your skin cells. You need to get enough sleep to give your complexion the chance to rest and recover from everything you put in through in a day. This is also why you should also sleep make-up free and at a coolish temperature.
Sleep is necessary for your brain and your mental health
Sleep gives your brain time to process everything that it has taken in during the day. You will notice now that if you try to go without sleep you start to feel almost like you are intoxicated; your brain needs time to rest, record and store all of the memories and information it has received. It also uses this time to clean house, or to get rid of all of the information that you don’t actually need to keep. Without this rest time you will start to become delirious; your mind has too many things to process.
You will also notice that sleep affects your mental health and your emotions. Quite simply, lack of sleep makes us grumpy and sad. Without sleep we are more easily overwhelmed and less capable of handling the difficulties that our day throws at us.
Sleep helps you to lose weight
Well, the studies might still be a little bit out on this one, but it is true that people who are overweight have poor sleep. People who sleep regular times each day, for a good long period every time, are more likely to weigh within a healthy weight range.
So how can you improve your sleep?
If you are feeling a bit overwhelmed by all of the above, don’t be. It’s actually really easy to improve your sleep, and you don’t need doctor’s prescriptions or sleeping pills that make you sluggish the next day.
You can add some simple exercise to your routine, such as a walk 3-4 times a week, or make basic changes to your diet, such as reducing caffeine, cheese, red and processed meat and alcohol.
The old school remedy of warm milk before bed is apparently proven fact, so don’t give it up after your preschool years are over. Another simple but effective way you can make a change is by reducing your screen time – turn it off earlier and if you can, keep your phone out of the bedroom altogether.
Here are some natural products that may also help:
Lavender essential oil
The scent of lavender has been proven to help send you off to dreamland. You could try spritzing some lavender and water around your room, washing your sheets in a few drops of lavender oil, or burning a little in your infuser before bed.
Chamomile has been used to help people sleep since medieval times, and for good reason. A cup of chamomile tea before bed can calm you right down and still your body and mind, as can some chamomile oil in your infuser or wonderfully, rubbed into the soles of your feet.
A lack of magnesium can be the cause of your troubled sleep patterns, which can be easily remedied by adding a supplement to your diet. Magnesium also helps with body aches and pains and can settle your bits down better for a good night’s sleep.
Supplements containing valerian have a sedating effect, but without the sluggishness of taking heavy sleepy pills. Valerian is better taken as a regular supplement as your body needs to build up a store of it, but this kind of steady increase is better for you naturally.
Your body naturally makes melatonin, but you may be low in it, which can disrupt your sleep. Taking a melatonin supplement can boost your body’s natural production, and can help to establish normal sleep patterns again.
Talk to the team at Eric’s
And we don’t mean that listening to them talk will make you fall asleep, what listening to their advice certainly could help! There are a wide range of products in our store that may assist you, just come in and see one of our lovely staff today.