If you’re like most people, you have probably woken up feeling like you're already tired before the day has even started.
It’s natural to wake up feeling refreshed, but there are two common sleep-related reasons why many people feel like they need more sleep or need coffee to get going in the morning:
Difficulty falling asleep – this is usually because of activity in your brain – perhaps you’re thinking too much, are too excited or have just had too much caffeine.
Difficulty staying asleep, or disturbed sleep -this usually because of activity in your body, but it can also be caused by caffeine or other stimulants.
It’s useful to distinguish between these two reasons, especially if you want to wake up feeling energized and ready to go. The first step is to take a minute to think about your sleep patterns.
How to get a good night's sleep if you have difficulty falling asleep:
If you have problems falling asleep it is usually because your brain is over-active when you should be getting sleepy. This can be caused internally, by stress, emotions or worries, or it can be caused externally by caffeine or other stimulants including bright lights and being online, or even by the natural reduction in melatonin production that begins to be felt in your 30s and early 40s. To start falling asleep easily try the following new habits:
- 1. Stop using electronic devices at least 30 minutes before bed. Switch off all electronic devices (such as tv, mobile phones and laptops) at least 30 minutes before your planned bedtime.
- 2. Get rid of any low level light sources in your bedroom. This might be a bedside clock, flashing phone charger or any number of modern electrical appliances. You don’t notice them during the day, but as your eyes become accustomed to the dark they suddenly seem very bright.
- 3. Don’t consume caffeine after 2pm if you can avoid it. If you’re at dinner follow it with herbal tea rather than a coffee!
- 4. Distract your mind from the stresses of the day, especially if you’re stressed or anxious about something that is worrying you. Try to do something that distracts your mind such as reading a good book, or watching an immersive TV show (not the news or YouTube!)
- 5. Take supplements that calm your brain and central nervous system. We suggest using Magnesium Bisglycinate and TranquilMind 1-2 hours before sleeping to calm your nervous system, followed by TranquilSleep 30-60 minutes before sleeping to help you fall asleep and provide the building blocks for serotonin and other important neurotransmitters that you need to relax properly.
- 6. Tire yourself out with a tough workout. If you still struggle to fall asleep despite doing all the steps above you can tire yourself out with a tough workout, although not within a couple of hours before bed as the adrenaline from your workout can keep you awake.
How to get a good night's sleep if you have difficulty staying asleep:
If you have a problem with staying asleep it is usually caused by some kind of discomfort in your body or external disturbance. This might be any combination of the following: too much food or food of a type that your body can’t handle causing your intestines to work all night; stress on your body, for example a liver that is overworked from alcohol, or being insulin resistant or peripheral stimulation such as MSG; disturbed breathing or difficulty breathing; light or noise in your room, even as little as a blinking laptop charger; and of course your phone!
Disturbed sleep or waking in the night for any of the above reasons can leave you feeling tired even after a good 8 hours of sleep. Fortunately you can fix this with the following changes:
- 1. Make sure that your bedroom is dark and as quiet as possible, with a comfortable mattress and set at a cool temperature. Get a comfortable eye-mask to keep any light out of your eyes.
- 2. If you wake in the night needing to urinate it is likely that you are mildly insulin resistant, in which case it’s time for you to start working out and get healthy. Alternatively, you might have an overstressed liver which is usually too much food or alcohol that your liver needs to work on all night - you know what you need to do!
- 3. Avoid foods that make you gassy during the night. If this is a problem you should try to take note of what foods cause it. It might be too much fiber but more likely it's too much junk and high fat food. It could also be that you have food sensitivities. This should be solved by avoiding any such foods in the evening.
- 4. Try to eat your final meal of the day early in the evening, and avoid eating late at night so that your gut is more or less resting as you sleep.
- 5. If you have difficulty breathing in the night it might be time to lose weight and do whatever you can to reduce inflammation.
- 6. To alleviate these sleep disturbances we recommend using TranquilMind and Magnesium Bisglycinate a couple of hours before bed. These will help calm your central nervous system, including your brain, intestines and musculature, which will help you stay relaxed all through the night leaving you refreshed when you wake up in the morning.