Sleep is a vital bodily function that allows us to relax and recharge physically and mentally. Good sleep causes you to be refreshed and alert after you wake up. The quality of sleep goes a long way in improving your overall health and well-being as it also fights off diseases.
Without enough sleep, the brain cannot function properly. This can impair your abilities to concentrate, think clearly, and process memories. (1)
Importance of Sleep
The ideal amount of sleep for any adult is about seven to nine hours. Children require a lot more sleep than adults, especially if they are under five years of age. Many things stop us from getting the ideal amount of sleep like work schedules, day-to-day stressors, a disruptive bedroom environment, and medical conditions.
Having a healthy lifestyle ensures that you get the right amount of sleep. Lack of sleep is also a symptom of a sleep disorder for some individuals.
Adults who do not receive a sufficient amount of sleep each night can implement some positive lifestyle and sleep habits to log the needed seven to nine hours. These include the following:
- Establish a realistic bedtime and stick to it every night, even on the weekends.
- Maintain comfortable temperature settings and low light levels in your bedroom.
- Consider a “screen ban” on televisions, computers and tablets, cell phones, and other electronic devices in your bedroom.
- Abstain from caffeine, alcohol, and large meals in the hours leading up to bedtime.
- Refrain from using tobacco at any time of day or night.
- Exercise during the day; this can help you wind down in the evening and prepare for sleep. (1)
Reasons why you might be losing sleep?
After working with 40,000 individuals, researchers came up with seven main reasons why you either get up at night or suffer from poor sleep. We will also discuss temporary solutions that might increase your quality of sleep.
Here are the seven reasons you may be experiencing trouble sleeping and how to improve your sleep:
1. High Blood Sugar
Having to Urinate a lot at night is due to you being diabetic or pre-diabetic. Water is followed by sugar, so you will be able to hold your urine longer when you fix your blood sugar problem.
Ways you can lower your blood sugar levels include managing your carb intake, increasing your fiber intake, and staying hydrated.
2. High Insulin
Insulin acts as a stimulant for your sympathetic nervous system. High levels of insulin in your system make you unable to hold your bladder overnight. An easy solution for this would be to optimize your insulin levels. Some ways to optimise your insulin levels include:
- Follow a Low-Carb Diet
- Take Apple Cider Vinegar
- Exercise Regularly
- Add Cinnamon to Foods and Beverages
- Stay Away From Refined Carbs
- Watch Portion Sizes
- Avoid All Forms of Sugar
- Avoid Sedentary Behavior
3. High Cortisol
The adrenal hormone is also referred to as the stress hormone. High cortisol levels are what prevent you from getting into a deep sleep cycle. After years of stress, you may be still awake at times when you should be in the deepest of sleep. A temporary solution to maintaining your cortisol levels is taking vitamin D3.
Stimulants like caffeine are responsible for keeping you up at night or causing you to sleep poorly. Your liver cannot detoxify these stimulants quickly; it takes time.
Stimulants like tea or caffeine stop your body from being able to relax fully. It is recommended that you cut down to one cup of caffeine per day and that too in the morning.
5. Artificial Light
Exposure to blue light, for example, computer screens in high doses, is not suitable for your health as it stops or hinders the activation of hormones that help you sleep at night. You need to get a full-spectrum light, go for a walk, and allow the sunlight to hit your face.
6. Sleep Apnea
The specific area of the brain stem involved in breathing usually requires the help of B1 in functioning correctly. There is a chance that you have trouble breathing at night due to a B1 deficiency. To overcome your B1 deficiency, take vitamin B supplements, and eliminate why you are suffering from B1 depletion. A high carbohydrate diet can cause you to suffer from B1 depletion. To combat this, you should lower your carbs and consume nutritional Yeast.
7. Altered pH
A symptom of your body being too alkaline is getting leg cramps frequently at night. Your body can be too acidic or too alkaline. An easy solution for this problem is to incorporate vitamin D3 and apple cider vinegar into your diet. If you suffer from stress at night or find it hard to relax, the use of vitamin D3 and apple cider vinegar will help. For too much acid, you need to alkalize the body. For people between the ages of 1-70 years it is recommended that they consume 600 IU of vitamin D (15mcg) daily. (2)
Since we have already discussed the importance of sleep and why you might not be getting enough sleep, it is safe to say that you can establish healthy habits and live a full life with some minor changes to your daily routine.
- Why Do We Need Sleep? (2020, December 11). Retrieved January 16, 2021, from https://www.sleepfoundation.org/how-sleep-works/why-do-we-need-sleep