Simple tricks to help you drift off
We understand waking up can be difficult, so
sometimes you spend your mornings rushing around. But missing
breakfast may be the very reason that you found it difficult to
sleep the night before...
Is breakfast really the most important meal of the day? Our
sleep expert, Dr Nerina, has informed us that eating breakfast is
vital. Don't have much time? Snacking on something as small as
eight almonds and two dates could be the way to start your busy
Dr Nerina tells us "if you don't have breakfast, your body
believes it is living in famine and produces stress hormones that
are not conducive to restful sleep. But by eating, you're letting
your body know there is enough food and you are living safely,
which in turn switches on your sleep and energy systems."
Why should sleep be a priority? Getting enough sleep means you
are more likely to be clear on the choices you need to make. We
give more thought to what food we eat, what we drink and when and
how we move.
Here are some of Dr Nerina's top sleeping tricks:
Eat & Drink
Give future you a helping hand: even if you're
feeling tired or rushed in the morning make breakfast a priority.
Having breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up will help you
produce more melatonin and sleep easier that night. Try eating
something that is rich in protein, such as chicken, cheese, tofu,
tuna, eggs, nuts, seeds and milk. Remember that caffeine is not
your friend; instead, aim to drink two litres of water every
The Electronic Sundown
Technology is a major distraction. Staying away
from your glaring screens for a good hour before you get into bed
is a simple way to help you descend into a deep sleep almost
effortlessly. Think of your bedroom as your personal sanctuary,
leave your work for work time and don't bring your work life into
Stop Checking the Time
Sleeping is easiest when we are relaxed so if
you spend your evenings feeling anxious about how much sleep you're
getting, you're ironically contributing to your sleep loss. That's
right: checking the time and putting pressure on yourself to fall
asleep is likely to make stop you from drifting off. We recommend
avoiding the trap of setting yourself rules such as "I must get
eight hours' sleep" and instead tell yourself that you'll get "some
good rest" this evening.
Exercising regularly is one of the most
effective ways to reduce stress levels and help you to get a good
night's sleep. Don't worry" this doesn't mean you have to do a 10km
run everyday. Something as simple as walking your dog or strolling
through the park is enough to reduce your stress levels.
Early to bed
We understand it isn't always possible, but even
if it's just four days a week, aim to be in bed for 10:30PM. This
is one rule that is worth trying to stick to, although you don't
have to be asleep: resting or listening to some music is fine - but
do avoid that phone and that TV!