Why Sleep Is More Important Than Your Diet Or Exercise
When it comes to sleep, we know how important it is. It effects everything from your mental to your physical wellbeing in so many different ways. Ongoing sleep deprivation has been linked to heart disease, high blood pressure, kidney disease and even diabetes, as well as a weakened immune system and depression.
This means that, no matter how well you look after yourself in terms of exercise and what you eat, without getting enough sleep your health will still suffer.
We’re here to explain why and how to get your sleep back on track.
It’s important to know that often it isn’t the amount you sleep, but the quality of sleep you get. In order for your body and mind to recover, you need to spend enough time in each of the sleep stages to get a good night’s sleep.
If you want to nap, the best time to wake up would be within the first 2 stages, so you can feel refreshed, or when you sleep at night to wake up after a REM cycle, as waking up in the middle of one can leave you feeling groggy and zombie-like.
To summarise, there are 4 main stages of sleep. The first two stages, your body is easing into sleep, and the third is when you're finally in a deep sleep. After this, however, is when you enter in REM sleep where your body is able to repair and recover your body and mind. This is where you dream and if you wake up during this stage, you can feel incredibly groggy. But this is also where most of the repair work is done.
Understanding Your Circadian Rhythm
Your circadian rhythm is what helps your body produce the hormones it needs to wake up and send you to sleep. Your body goes through different processes throughout the day and the night, and without our Circadian Rhythm, we wouldn’t know when to wake up, eat or go to sleep. It even controls things like your blood pressure, hormone levels, and temperature.
It’s mostly controlled by the sunlight which is why living alongside technology can cause our circadian rhythm to fall out of sync.
With the blue light emitting from our phones and laptops, it can often trick our mind into thinking it’s daylight, preventing our bodies from releasing melatonin, the sleep-inducing hormone.
Not only will we suffer from a bad night’s sleep if our circadian rhythm is off, but it also has a huge effect on our mental health. A study on 91,000 people found that people with a disrupted body clock were linked to mental health conditions, like depression and bipolar.
As well as mental health, our circadian rhythm has a direct effect on our physical health, with studies showing night-time shift workers, who end up eating and sleeping at odd times, are more commonly linked to obesity, diabetes, some cancers, and even heart disease.
How To Get Your Sleep Back On Track
Getting your body clock back into sync is not rocket science as it’s natural for us to follow it anyway. But to help you get back into sync, we have a few things to help.
1. First of all, allow your self at least 7 hours to sleep every night, and maintain a similar bedtime and wake-up time every day (yes, even on weekends!).
2. Limit the amount of caffeine you have after lunch (if any).
3. Boost your energy at midday. At Organica, we created an essential oil roller for that midday dip. Full of orange and grapefruit oil to beat stress and improve blood flow, our Pure Energy Roller will uplift your mood and help you beat that 3 pm slump.
4. Make sure your meals are all at a similar time each day, too. It's best to eat within a 12-hour window from when you wake up, eating your largest meal of the day in the morning, a smaller lunch, and an even smaller dinner. Avoid food for at least two hours before you sleep.
5. Make sure you see daylight within 5 minutes of waking up and avoid harsh computer screens for around an hour before you head for bed, so your body knows when to wake up and when to sleep.
6. Practice healthy sleep. Our Pure Rest Roller has already helped thousands of people cut out sleeping pills and naturally improve their sleep. With soporific lavender and bergamot, the essential oils will help your mind and body relax and help you get to sleep faster. It'll also improve the quality of sleep, with a lot of our customers waking up less throughout the night! Because the easiest way to get your Circadian rhythm on track is by going to bed early and keeping that same bedtime for as long as you can!
THE BOTTOM LINE
Your circadian rhythm isn't hard to get right, once you start listening to your body and sleeping and eating at a similar time each day, you'll begin to notice a few changes in your body and mind, for the better!
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