On this new moon, we begin our HW Spring Reset with SLEEP. The lack of sleep undermines all other health behaviors, and it is the single most important thing we can do better our health and prevent chronic disease. Sleep is a restorative time to clean and detoxify the body and mind.
Did you know, that sleep deficit can contribute to:
Plaque accumulation in the brain
Unprocessed traumas and negative emotions
Type II diabetes
We need 9 hours of sleep to do all the healing work. If you are having trouble reaching the 9-hour benchmark, take the next eight weeks to work up to it. Sound blissful sleep takes effort, but it is worth it! Improved sleep will increase metabolic flexibility, bodily repair, and detoxification, improve cognition, stress reduction, prevent weight gain, and eliminate a whole slew of chronic diseases. Sound beautiful sleep will increase your quality of life.
In your Health Journey Journal this week record:
Sleep patterns (when you wake and fall asleep)
If your sleep is disturbed, record the reason(s) for the disturbances
Reoccurring dreams or unresolved traumas (record first thing upon waking)
Sleep strategies that personally work for you (and do share! #hwspringreset)
Pick and choose the strategies that work for you, better yet, go ahead and try them all for the best results.
You want 9 hours of rest, carve out the time.
Wake with the rising sun, and get 15-20 minutes of morning light out in nature (even if it is cloudy). This will set your circadian clock, and allow you to produce melatonin (a.k.a., the master antioxidant and sleep hormone). The sun exposure before 10 AM will also feel like a burst of energy.
Stop eating 3 hours before bed. Digestion is an expensive process; your body can not do the reparative work it needs if it is busy digesting food.
Drink your caffeine before noon. The effects of caffeine can linger in the body for more than eight hours. Even if you are able to fall asleep, caffeine triggers the release of cortisol and raises blood sugar which impairs proper sleep patterns and contributes to weight gain and Type II diabetes.
Modify your bedroom to ensure darkness. Cover over blue light-emitting devices (I put stickers on my white noise machine and outlets), wear an eye mask if needed, and pull down the shades if street lamps flood artificial light into the room.
Sleep cool. Adults sleep best in 60-70 degree temperatures, so go ahead and crack a window and allow in some cool fresh air, lose a layer, or invest in a cooling mattress.
Take a shower or bath before bed. The rise of body temperature and cool down will signal a time of rest for the body.
Avoid stress-inducing work, situations, and the news right before bed. Build in a 1-2 hour buffer zone to calm the mind and body. Swap out the TV for a relaxing spiritual text, novel, meditation, light movement, self-massage, or sex.
When the sun goes down, avoid blue light by wearing blue-light blocking glasses. My go-to is from Ra Optics.
Stop drinking liquids 1-hour before bed to avoid that midnight pee break.
Alcohol can disturb sleep patterns, consider swapping out your wind-down wine for teas of chamomile, passionflower, linden, and/or lemon balm. I'm French and love my red wine, I'll enjoy a glass earlier in the afternoon or evening (say 4-5 PM) rather than later so as not to disturb my sleep as much.
Hydrate during the day with water and a pinch of mineral-rich salt every now and then to get in some electrolytes.
Add a magnesium supplement to your evening routine. Magnesium promotes a sense of calm by helping your body maintain normal nerve function (think less stress and anxiety), and it is needed for over 300 biochemical processes.
Sleep sound and blissful friends and family. For other tips and tricks throughout the week follow me on Instagram @hwapothicaire, and hashtag your progress #hwspringreset
**These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This service or product is not intended to diagnose, treat or prevent any disease.**