Here are my top 10 sleep tips!
1. Sleep in total darkness. The slightest glimmer of light from street lamps to alarm clocks can halt the production of melatonin (your sleep hormone). If you can see your hand in front of you in the dark then your room isn’t dark enough!
2. Turn down the heating. This was a big one for me personally! Our bodies sleep optimally when the room temperature is between 18-20c. If you’re sleeping with a thick duvet on then this could also be contributing to you waking up due to overheating.
3. Keep a regular bed time. This isn’t always easy or practical but going to bed between 10 & 11pm helps to stabilise the circadian rhythm (natural body clock)
4. Don’t eat a large protein meal too close to bed. This can hinder the production of melatonin and stop you getting to sleep or having a restful sleep. Ideally eat at least 2hrs before bed.
5. Eat enough carbohydrates throughout the day, especially in the evening as this helps to drive tryptophan into the brain which converts to melatonin. 120g of carbs per day is the minimum required for most people.
6. Ensure you’re consuming enough magnesium in the diet or supplementing with 200mg-400mg of magnesium citrate before bed.
7. Wind down an hour before bed and keep off social media, news channels or confrontational situations.
8. Eat enough calories throughout the day. Under consuming calories is a stressor on the body and puts you in a ‘sympathetic dominant’ state! This results in poor sleep.
9. Expose your eyes to blue light (daylight) in the morning for at least an hour and avoid blue light in the evening from phones and laptops or wear blue blocking glasses.
10. You can try supplements which naturally increase GABA like Valerian, Passion Flower and Chamomile. My personal favourite is L-theanine (extracted from green tea). 250mg-500mg on an empty stomach is a therapeutic dose.