Whether you like it or not, we all NEED sleep. It affects productivity, emotional balance, memory, focus, metabolism, immune function, heart health, and even creativity. It’s the only time our bodies restore and clean house. Our bodies need at least 7 hours of sleep.
Tip #1: I’ve been using an Oura Ring to monitor sleep for the last few years. It does this by measuring heart rate, heart rate variability and body temperature. I am able to track how close I am to my goal of 7 hours of sleep each night. The Oura Ring has helped me understand how alcohol, exercise, food, hormones affects my sleep. I’ve learned my body temperature is higher when I drink alcohol and the second half of my menstrual cycle, so I need to sleep cooler at night with a lighter blanket or decrease the temperature on the Chili Sleep Pad.
Tip #2: Circadian rhythm is a natural internal clock that sends the body signals to wind down and relax or get energized as part of your sleep/wake cycle. Blue light from our devices interferes with our circadian rhythm by disrupting the production of melatonin, the main hormone involved in sleep regulation. The blue light tells our body to wake up. If I’m in front of a device within an hour of going to bed, I wear my blue light blocking glasses. If I’m in front of a device within an hour of going to bed, I wear my blue light blocking glasses. The Gunnar Intercept is one of my favorite pairs.
Tip #3: Exposure to light when you are sleeping effects regulation of your blood sugar and heart function. I wear a sleep mask to restrict light and this one is my favorite.
Tip #4: Circadian rhythm is your natural internal clock that sends the body signals to wind down and relax or get energized as part of your sleep/wake cycle. One of the best things to do to keep this internal clock on track (so you will feel sleepy at bedtime) is to get light exposure soon after you wake up. Try for at least 30 minutes before 12NOON. The best light exposure is outdoor natural light.
Tip #5: Because sleep is the time your body restores and cleans house, you want to create an environment where you get good quality sleep for as long as possible. Exposure to light when you are sleeping effects regulation of your blood sugar and heart function. So I close my room darkening shades each night.