You know your beauty sleep is important because it keeps your skin looking fresh, your mind renewed, and your insides healthy. But for whatever reason you have a hard time getting all of the slumber you need. Of course, you already know that you should avoid caffeine in the afternoon and try to get your workouts done in the morning. But if you need a little extra help in the shuteye department, these tips may be just the ticket.
Take Some Time to Stretch
Before bedtime, you need to unwind your mind so that it will easily drift off to sleep. The easiest way to do this is with some mild stretching paired with deep breathing. Any stretch that relaxes your muscles will suffice, but for an easy one that can be done in bed try this: While lying on your back, touch the bottoms of your feet together and drop your knees toward the bed. Place your arms by your sides with the palms up. While keeping your shoulders back, inhale through your nose for at least four counts, and then exhale. Repeat until you feel completely calm.
Get Rid of the Light
About an hour before bedtime, start turning off the lights to give your melatonin production a jump-start. Dimmer switches are perfect for this, but if you don’t have any, just keep enough light on that you can see. This also applies to any screens like phones, televisions, and computers. It is hard to step away, but doing so for at least an hour before your head hits the pillow can help you fall asleep much easier.
Choose Your Bedtime Snack Wisely
You already know that it’s not a good idea to go to bed with a full stomach, since that can lead to indigestion and heartburn. However, if you eat the right foods before drifting off, they may actually be able to help you. With the correct combination of protein and carbs, a burst of serotonin is produced, helping you drift off to dreamland. For example, you can mix up a banana with some cottage cheese, have a glass of milk with some whole grain toast, or enjoy a bowl of yogurt with some granola added in.