Continuing from yesterdays 5 suggestions, here are six more things you can do, eat or try to help you fall asleep like a kitty and sleep well all night. (Dr. Steve Newdell)
6. Take a Melatonin Supplement
Melatonin is a key sleep hormone that signals your brain when it’s time to relax and head to bed.
A melatonin supplement is an extremely popular aid to fall asleep faster and improve sleep quality. It can be over done but generally, taken as directed it is successful for most users. Here’s a quote from one Melatonis Supplement manufacturer:
“What is Sleepasil, and is it a sleeping pill?
Sleepasil is a natural sleep aid which contains a special blend of ingredients which include Melatonin, Chamomile, and Valerian Root.
“Sleepasil is not a sleeping pill, and can be purchased at all major drugstores without a prescription.
“Is Sleepasil safe?
Sleepasil helps you achieve better quality sleep, but will in no way suppress your ability to awaken and react to any situation which requires wakefulness. It is non-addictive and is safe to take on a regular basis. However, if you have chronic insomnia, it’s best to consult a physician. Sleepasil has been approved by the Philippine Food and Drug Authority since 2006“
Often used to treat insomnia, it may be one of the easiest ways to fall asleep faster.
In one study, 2 mg of melatonin before bed improved sleep quality and energy the next day and helped people fall asleep faster. Another study found half the participants fell asleep faster and had a 15 percent improvement in sleep quality (48, 49).
Additionally, no withdrawal effects were reported in either of the above studies.
Melatonin is also useful when traveling and adjusting to a new timezone, as it helps your body’s circadian rhythm return to normal.
In some countries, you need a prescription for melatonin. In others, melatonin is widely available in stores or online. Take around 1–5 mg, 30–60 minutes before bed.
Start with a low dose to assess your tolerance and then increase it slowly as needed. Since melatonin may alter brain chemistry, it is advised that you check with a medical professional before use.
A melatonin supplement is an easy way to improve sleep quality and fall asleep faster. Take 1–5 mg, 30–60 minutes before retiring to sleep.
7. Consider These Other Supplements
Several supplements can induce relaxation and help you sleep, including:
- Ginkgo biloba: A natural herb with many benefits, it can aid in sleep, relaxation and stress reduction. Take 250 mg, 30–60 minutes before bed
- Glycine: A few studies have found that 3 grams of the amino acid glycine can improve sleep quality
- Valerian root: This root is backed by several studies that show it can help you fall asleep and improve sleep quality. Take 500 mg before bed
- Magnesium: Responsible for more than 600 reactions within the body, studies show magnesium can improve relaxation and enhance sleep quality
- L-Theanine: An amino acid, l-theanine can improve relaxation and sleep. Take 100–200 mg before heading to bed
- Tryptophan 500 mg an hour before bed is another good supplement help us sleep.
- Lavender: A powerful plant-based supplement with many health benefits, lavender can induce a calming and sedentary-like effect to improve sleep. Take 80–160 mg containing 25–46 percent linalool
Make sure to only try these supplements one at a time. Of course, they are not a magic bullet for fixing sleep issues, but they can be useful when combined with some of the other tips in this article.
Several supplements can help with relaxation and sleep quality. These can work well when combined with other strategies.
Watch also for my new article about Foods as Sleep Aids. Before you take herbal supplements try eating or drinking one of these before bed:
- Which foods can help you sleep?
- Warm milk
- Chamomile tea
- Tart cherries
- Fatty fish
- Barley grass powder
A fish and lettuce salad an hour or two before sleep time might work out very well for you, AND help you reduce weight.
8. Don’t Drink Alcohol
Having a couple of drinks at night can negatively affect your sleep and hormone balances.
Alcohol is known to cause or increase the symptoms of sleep apnea, snoring and disrupted sleep patterns.
It also alters nighttime melatonin production, which plays a key role in your body’s circadian rhythm.
Another study found that alcohol consumption at night decreased the natural nighttime elevations in growth hormone, which plays a role in the circadian rhythm and has many other key functions. It’s no surprise that men who take to drinking get softer and fatter as they age. The growth hormone they should produce during the first 4-hours of deep sleep is not produced, and consequently they have reduced testosterone production, and they gain fat. My advice is to avoid alcoholic beverages.
9. Optimize Your Bedroom Environment
Many people believe that the bedroom environment and its setup are key factors in getting a good night’s sleep.
This can include aspects such as temperature, noise, furniture choice and arrangement, external lights and furnishings.
Numerous studies have highlighted that external noise, often from traffic, can cause poor sleep and long-term health issues.
One study investigating the bedroom environment of women found that around 50 percent of participants noticed improved sleep quality when reductions in noise and lighting were introduced.
To optimize your bedroom environment, try to minimize external noise, light and artificial lights from devices like alarm clocks. Make sure your bedroom is a quiet, relaxing, clean and enjoyable place.
For reasons of romance and good sleep NEVER install a television in your bedroom. In my opinion there are only two good reasons to go to bed, one is to play with your lover, and the other is to sleep. The idea of sitting up with the lights on watching TV or reading seems all wrong to me. If you’re not sleepy, take a bath, put on a bathrobe, then sit at your kitchen table and read. When you feel sleepy, close the book and go lie down in/on your bed.
I could comment more about the subject of TV and Video movies in the bedroom, but I’m expecting you to think your way through this issue.
10. Set Your Bedroom Temperature
Body and bedroom temperature can also profoundly impact sleep quality.
As you may have experienced during the summer or when on vacation, it can be very hard to get a good night’s sleep when it’s too warm.
One study found that bedroom temperature affected sleep quality even more than external noise.
Other studies show that increased body and bedroom temperature can decrease sleep quality and increase wakefulnes.
Around 70 F or 20 C, seems to be a comfortable temperature for most people, although it always depends on your preferences. Test different temperatures to find which is most comfortable for you.
11. Don’t Eat Late in the Evening
Late-night eating may negatively impact both sleep quality and the natural release of growth hormone and melatonin.
A small whole carbohydrate meal eaten before bedtime may help you fall asleep faster and improve sleep quality. Perhaps oatmeal or a whole wheat roll and a little water or a small service of warm cows milk
This is likely due to its effect on the hormone tryptophan, which can make you feel tired. You can buy tryptophan supplements too and take one of those with some food an hour or two before bed. But then, don’t sit there eyes as big as saucers watching the clock waiting to see if these items put you to sleep. Just go about your normal routine or read a bit of something pleasant, and when you feel tired go to bed.
Interestingly, one study found that a low-carb diet also improved sleep, indicating that carbs are not always necessary, especially if you are used to a low-carb diet.
I’ll offer a few more helpful tips about sleep in the next article. Thanks for reading this one. If you haven’t yet, please click the bell icon in the lower left of your computer screen. You’ll get a quick note when I publish new information. It’s free of charge, and helpful.
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