Guest Author - danielle barone
The best medicine for the body is sleep. During the nightly process of sleep, healing chemicals are released in the body, and have restorative effects on all the organs.
Deep sleep produces the most appearance altering benefits. Even the deep sleep from a nap has the same healing ability.
Sleep has many benefits. It improves the texture and condition of the skin. It also helps to prevent the production of harmful stress chemicals.
Sleep increases health and creativity. It strengthens the human body and mind. Sleep also boosts energy and brainpower.
Sleep activates the immune system which fights illness and helps to keep the human body disease free. Sleep also slows down the aging process, and helps us to live longer and healthier lives.
Sleep increases physical health, as well as mental and emotional health. Sleep improves our ability to positively deal with physical, mental and emotional tasks.
Itís important to make sleep and rest a priority in your life. Learning to improve the quality of your sleep is one of the most important investments in health that you can make.
Poor sleep reduces bodily and mental functions the following day. It also causes the body to overproduce the hormone cortisol into the bloodstream. This hormone is a reaction to stress and is very harmful to the body.
It takes many hours, and sometimes days for this cortisol to leave the bloodstream. This can send the body into a spiral of sleeplessness.
Cortisol stimulates your body out of fear and causes anxiety. This harms the body and organs, and can leave you unable to rest.
It helps to be aware of this hormone and reduce stress when possible. This can reduce the production of cortisol and the health problems that can result from it.
If you find that you do not feel well, cannot sleep and are anxious, cortisol may be in your bloodstream. You can help yourself by eating a healthy snack and drinking water and electrolytes. This will help to restore your blood sugar levels and reduce the cortisol in your system.
Complete this self care by relaxing and resting your body. Listen to the sound of your own breathing rhythms, and deep relaxation will follow. This will help you drift off into a peaceful and healing sleep.
The following natural sleep suggestions can help you to sleep better:
. Drink milk before bed to help you drift into a peaceful sleep. Milk contains chemicals that naturally relax the body.
. Take sips of a caffeine free sports drink containing glucose and electrolytes. It will hydrate, induce calm, relieve headache pain and sleeplessness.
. Blood sugar fluctuations can interupt healthy sleep. A protein snack before bed will eliminate hunger and keep your blood sugar levels stable. This will help your body to feel content and relaxed for sleep.
. Exercise during the day to relieve stress and tension. This will help you to feel relaxed at bedtime.
. Write down things that are on your mind so that you can feel peaceful and let go of worries.
. Eat healthy foods at regular intervals throughout the day to prevent the production of stress hormones and low blood sugar both of which can lead to anxiety and interfere with your sleep.
. Drink plenty of water to keep your body hydrated. Dehydration can cause sleep and health problems.
. Take calcium before bed as a natural sleep enhancer. Calcium calms the central nervous system and helps to induce deep restorative sleep.
. Magnesium has a calming effect on the brain and nervous system. It can also induce sleep that is restorative for the body, mind and skin.
. Vitamin E is a relaxing vitamin and will help you sleep through the night.
. Take a warm shower or bath as a comforting way to relax your body.
. Use positive talk and affirmations that reinforce healthy attitudes about sleep.
. Avoid drugs, alcohol and nicotine as they stimulate your body and create a stress response. These chemicals inhibit sleep leaving you feeling not well.
. Avoid caffeine as it is a stimulant that remains in the body for long periods of time preventing the deep sleep needed for healing.
. Establish a relaxing routine before bedtime.
. Design your bedroom to look and feel relaxing.
.Sleep on a comforting mattress and pillow that let you feel rested.
.Keep electronic products out of the bedroom or covered, as the electromagnetic rays tend to awaken the bodyís internal clock, disrupting sleep.
.Keep work materials away from your sleeping environment. The bedroom should be a place of sleep only. Creating a relaxing bedroom, will help your mind and body to associate the room with sleep.
. Dim the lights, and shut off electronics like the television or computer in the hours prior to sleep. This will help you to unwind and relax. The electric energy from these products stimulates the central nervous system and internal body clock, and this can disturb your body's abilty to relax and sleep.
. If you have trouble sleeping, lie down comfortably and just relax. Keep in mind that it really is ok if you do not sleep, as long as you rest your body. This one thought will help you to let go. Focus only on breathing and resting your body. This will help both your body and mind to relax. Allow comforting images to float in your mind. Imagine yourself floating on a cloud, or in a blue stream of water. Visualize images of peace and serenity. All of these will help you achieve deep relaxation, and drift off into a peaceful sleep.
Peace of Mind