A good night’s sleep is the most important thing you can give your body. Lack of sleep is linked to early death, fatigue, obesity, chronic illness and poor productivity. Insomnia is a very common problem that is often treated by doctors with pharmaceutical drugs that leave you feeling groggy and do not actually even get you into a deep, reparative sleep.
• Our body temperature drops when we sleep. Try to make sure your bedroom is cool or try cooling the head by putting a damp cloth on your forehead. One study found that insomniacs who wore a cap with cold water circulating inside it actually fell asleep at the rate of a non-insomniac and stayed asleep throughout the night.
• Blood sugar lows during the night may cause your body to wake up in search of glucose. You can avoid this by having a small snack before bed, comprising of fat and slow-releasing carbohydrates. This could be some nuts and berries. You can also avoid refined carbohydrates at dinner time.
• Eliminate caffeine in all forms from your diet. You might to be able to metabolise caffeine efficiently and it could be making you feel wired may hours after you have consumed it. Be aware of tea, soft drinks or medications that may contain caffeine.
• Melatonin is a hormone that is produced at night and helps to encourage and regulate sleep. It is produced when it becomes dark in the evening and stops being produced on exposure to light. Due to our modern life we are exposing ourselves to light from computers and TVs well into the night. Turning off electronics 2 hours before bed and making sure that your bedroom is pitch dark may help you to produce more melatonin and sleep better. You might benefit from some melatonin supplements for a few weeks to speed up your production.
• You should avoid drinking alcohol in the evenings as it can cause impaired sleep. It actually stops the body from entering REM sleep and causes disrupted sleep as it is a diuretic and makes you more likely to wake up needing the bathroom.