Sleep is one of the foundational principles of vibrant health, and yet one of the most difficult to achieve for many of us.
While there is no one solution to sound sleep, proper sleep hygiene can be cultivated with some consistency and a few impactful actions. Surprisingly, preparing for a night of quality sleep begins the moment that you wake up in the morning. Read on for 5 small yet effective changes you can take to optimize your sleep:
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Soak in the Sun: Your sleep-wake cycle is controlled by a 24-hour biological clock know as the circadian rhythm. This means that it’s not just about what we do directly before bed that impacts our sleep. Starting our day in lock step with our circadian rhythm ensures that we feel energized upon waking and tired by bedtime, and the first way to sync your circadian rhythm is to soak in some sun. Exposure to morning sunlight regulates your body by reinforcing your natural circadian rhythms and signaling to your brain that it’s time to suppress melatonin production (melatonin is the sleep inducing hormone). Morning sunlight also boosts your vitamin D production (associated with improved immunity and stronger bones) and it increases your cortisol to healthy levels, leaving you energized for the day.
Stay Cozy + Cool: For anyone who has spent a steamy summer night sans air conditioning, there’s an innate understanding that too hot of sleeping conditions can lead to some major tossing and turning. Doctors and sleep specialists recommend an average nightly bedroom temperature of 65 degrees Fahrenheit to optimize sleep, induce melatonin release and begin to cool your internal body temperature. Our Clean Market Made shorts make it easy to be cozy but cool all night long.
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Get Your Mag In: Magnesium is having a moment, and rightfully so. It’s been a long year of erratic sleep patterns for most of us, and magnesium is a tried and true supplement to help relax the body and induce a feeling of relaxation and sleepiness. There are lots of ways to get your magnesium in: you can luxuriate a hot bath with a magnesium soak and literally let your stress melt away, opt for a bioavailable magnesium supplement (we love the berry flavor of this one), or consume more magnesium rich foods like avocados, pumpkin seeds, spinach, legumes, and did we mention that dark chocolate is high in magnesium?
Drink Smarter: When you’re dragging in energy, it can feel tempting to order that afternoon espresso to energize or that after work glass of wine or pre-bed nightcap to relax. The reality is that these are short term bandaids that may actually be perpetuating your sleeplessness. Instead of grabbing for caffeine or alcohol, several functional beverages can serve as the perfect vehicle to relax and unwind, without the side effects. Some of our favorites include Kin Euphorics’ Dream Light and Anima Mundi’s Lucid Dream Tea, both of which rely on adaptogens and herbs to induce a natural and restful sleep state. For best results, enjoy these before bed and drift off with ease.
Keep it Consistent: The verdict is out on the exact number of days it takes to solidify a new habit, but it’s proven that small, consistent behavioral changes lead to sustained shifts. This applies to our sleep when we keep it consistent. Maintaining the same bedtime, wake time (even on weekends), and pre-bed rituals can support our overall sleep hygiene, which in turn help us to fall asleep—and stay asleep— when we get into bed.
While sleep is the most effective way to rejuvenate and restore the body, it’s important to remember that lasting sleep hygiene doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time, patience and practice to get in a sleep routine. Stick with it and we guarantee you’ll master the rhythms of the night shortly.
*For anyone who needs a little extra sleep support, Clean Market has got you covered with our NutriSleep x Equinox IV Drip exclusively at Equinox Hotel.