THE KALEJUNKIE DISH: GETTING QUALITY SLEEP
By now you've heard and read about the importance of getting quality sleep each night, but the question is, DO YOU? For me, the answer is sometimes. If my mind is overstimulated, my brain filled with too many thoughts, or perhaps I drank a little too much wine the night before, then my sleep quality goes down. And when that happens, it actually affects my mood. Sound familiar? The reality is that I have struggled with this for many years. These days I keep it under control by going to therapy sessions, yoga, meditation, and being more mindful about the quality of the people I let into my life (if they don't add value, then they don't belong).
But the one thing that REALLY helps is doing everything I can to improve the quality of my sleep. Better quality sleep promotes feelings of happiness. There are two main things that I do to ensure that I get good sleep, and I wanted to share them with you because while they are simple things, these simple things can have a profound impact on your quality of life.
First, limit your exposure to blue light.
This seems to be a trend in the wellness industry these days, as I've seen more and more people wearing blue light blocker glasses and other gadgets designed to minimize blue light. If you are wondering what's so bad about blue light, the simple answer is that our bodies have a natural circadian rhythm that helps us sleep when it's time to sleep and wake up when it's time to wake up. But devices like our smart phones, tablets, tv's, and computers emit blue light, which actually disrupts our natural circadian rhythm, making it more difficult to fall and stay asleep. I’ve recently started wearing day- and night-time light blocker glasses to minimize my exposure to blue light . These glasses essentially protect the eyes from blue light, so our circadian system stays in check. There are many brands out there these days and not all are the same, so do your research.
The second thing that I do is supplement, supplement, supplement.
There are two supplements that I take without fail. The first is melatonin, and the second is a high quality magnesium. Melatonin is a hormone produced by our pineal gland, and it helps control our bodies sleep and wake cycles. A lot of people don't produce enough melatonin, which in turn decreases quality of sleep. For me, supplementing with melatonin has been super helpful. Check with your doctor to find proper dosing for you.
The other supplement I take is Magnesium . The other thing you might not know about me is that I am, by nature, a tense and stressed person. Magnesium has wonderful properties that actually counter that by helping support a healthy heart, nervous system, and muscle relaxation.* MegaFoodⓇ makes a high quality magnesium that I highly recommend. If you’re unfamiliar with MegaFood, they are an award-winning dietary supplement brand that crafts premium supplements made with real food and added nutrients. You can see on the labels that their products have many quality seals such as non-GMO, organic, gluten-free, vegetarian or vegan, kosher, dairy-free and soy-free. Plus, they are the only supplement brand to have its entire line certified glyphosate residue free!
I love MegaFood Magnesium because you can take it on an empty stomach, and I also like the fact that it's enhanced with 50 mg of organic spinach, helping you get those greens in too.* And nope, you don't taste it. You can find MegaFood Magnesium at Walgreens.com.
The last two things that I do to help me get a good night's sleep are ensuring that my room is pitch dark, and using a sound machine. Darkness signals to your body that it's time to go to sleep. And using a sound machine (or an app with rain, ocean, thunder, etc) can help get you into a deep sleep and can help you stay asleep. I use an app called Rain, and plug my phone away from my bed so I'm not tempted to check emails, texts, and Instagram during my sleep time.