Getting enough sleep is a problem that many women have. Between happy hour with friends, catching up on Netflix and kids who need you in the wee hours, women are chronically sleep deprived. Lack of sleep can really harm your health. It increase hunger hormones, leading to overeating and it interferes with productivity and concentration during the day, among other scary things. The average woman needs 7 to 9 hours every night. Not getting there yet? Here are some new ways to help you reach your goal and face each day refreshed and healthy, thanks to Shape magazine.
1. Get More Exercise during the Day
There’s conflicted information about whether an evening workout is good for sleep or not. However, there is a wide body of evidence that proves that getting enough physical activity can improve sleep by as much as 65 percent, according to the journal, “Mental Health and Physical Activity.” Sleep quality tends to go down as we get older, so getting into a good habit now will serve you well in the years to come.
2. Hang out with Your Friends
You don’t want to be out all night, but hanging with your pals is actually great for good sleep. Research shows that people who have close relationships sleep better at night. This is likely because that support and love makes a person feel safe and secure, cutting back on middle of the night worries about anything and everything. Having trouble sleeping? Book a brunch date with the girls, ASAP!
3. Add Seafood to Your Diet on a Regular Basis
According to the experts, eating seafood can boost your body’s production of serotonin, which you need to regulate your sleep cycle. The reason for this likely lies in the omega-3 fatty acids that fish contain. Your best bets are going to be oily fish like salmon, mackerel and tuna. If you don’t like fish, talk to your doctor about adding an omega-3 supplement to your daily routine.
4. Forget the White Noise and Opt for Pink Noise Instead
New research shows that white noise can actually interfere with a good night’s sleep. Pink noise seems to have a more positive effect on helping women sleep all night long. The difference is in the frequencies. Pink noise tends toward the lower frequencies, which sounds gentler to your subconscious.
5. Change the Way You’re Breathing
Who knew that something that comes so naturally could be done right or wrong? Turns out there has been quite a bit of research surrounding breathing techniques and getting enough sleep. Turns out the 4-5-7 method is best. Breathe in four counts, hold your breath for five counts, then exhale for a count of seven. Try this a couple of times before bed and anytime you wake up in the night and you should be slumbering away in no time.
6. Try a Melatonin Supplement Instead of Sleeping Pills
The problem with many kinds of sleeping pills is that, while not necessarily addictive, they become a habit that you rely on for good sleep. If you want a more natural approach to good sleep, consider taking a melatonin supplement before bed. Melatonin is a hormone that your body naturally produces and that helps you sleep so boosting your intake might be all it takes.
7. Give Your Bed a Much Needed Makeover
Where you sleep could be what’s causing you to have trouble sleeping. When you’re kids aren’t crying and the television is off, you need a restful place that maximizes sleep. Consider a customized mattress, higher thread count sheets and a supportive pillow that will make your bed the best place for sleep you’ll ever find.
Do you have a hard time sleeping? How do you ensure a good night’s rest?