Health Restoration 101

Getting The Sleep You Need

Carolyn Guilford, CNC
Carolyn Guilford, CNC

Sleep is absolutely one of the most essential habits for good health. You really can’t be in the best possible health unless you are getting enough sleep, and sleeping well. We all have too much to do, but taking time to recharge ourselves by getting a good night’s sleep can make all the difference in how productive we are the next day, and in preserving our health long term.

Sleeping five hours or less each night has been shown over time to increase one’s risk of developing diabetes, according to the journal Diabetes Care. However recent research at Columbia University’s Dept of Health Sciences shows that long term sleep deprivation increases the risk of a variety of major illnesses including, High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, Cancer, Heart Disease, Stroke, Depression, and Obesity.

On the good side, getting adequate sleep boosts the immune system and fights the aging process with hormones we can only benefit from if we are asleep by 10 PM, and these hormones work to optimize adrenal function. Here are ten tips to help you get the sleep you need and deserve:

1. Maintain a regular bedtime and wake time schedule, including weekends. 2. Establish a regular, relaxing bedtime routine such as soaking in a warm bath, it’s a great way to relax your body. Add a cup of Epsom salts and baking soda to remove toxins from your body. Just as the sun goes down to signal the end of the day so might you turn down the lights, quiet your routine with easy listening music or relaxing book.

3. Create an environment that is dark, quiet, comfortable and cool, for sleep.

4. Make sure you are sleeping on a comfortable mattress and pillows, with beautiful, fresh linens.

5. Use your bedroom only for sleep and rest. Keep work materials, computers and televisions out of the sleeping environment. 6. Try having your big meal at lunchtime and a lighter meal at dinner time. Finish eating two to three hours before your regular bedtime.

7. Exercise regularly. Exercise is important for good sleep, but not at bedtime. It is best to complete your workout a few hours before bedtime.

8. Avoid all tobacco products, especially close to bedtime, they can lead to poor sleep. Avoid caffeine in coffee, tea, soft drinks, and chocolate close to bedtime. If you want something warm to drink, try an herbal tea. Chamomile, catnip, anise or fennel tea are all good choices, and contain natural ingredients which will help you sleep.

9. Avoid alcohol close to bedtime. It can lead to disrupted sleep later in the night and trouble getting back to sleep.

10. The ultimate relaxation is a massage, the magic touch. Givers get. Be first to give your sweetie a massage and your life will change. You’ll get a massage anytime you want it.

I believe seven to nine hours of sleep each night will revive you in so many ways. There’s no one formula that’s right for everybody. The best indication is how alert and energetic you feel in the morning. Good sleep leads to good health.

Studies show that if you’re healthy, you’ll probably sleep well. And if you sleep well, you’re more likely to stay healthy. Remember, Health is a Choice!

Contact Carolyn Guilford, nutritionist and wellness advocate at – P O Box 2814 -Savannah, GA 31402. She can be reached at 912 236-8987.

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