Sleep “charges your battery” and rejuvenates you so that you can enjoy the next day’s activities with enthusiasm and positive expectations. Important metabolic processes your body needs to stay healthy occur while you are asleep.
Just like everything else, your sleep can be greatly affected by your diet. If you favor caffeinated beverages, be sure to avoid them after 1:00 p.m. This includes colas, chocolate, over-the-counter pain relievers and more. Alcohol, a depressant, can also affect the quality of your sleep. The best thing before sleep? Try a Calcium Magnesium beverage or Min-Tran just before bed to create relaxation and deeper sleep.
The best way to prepare yourself for sleep is to get into bed, lay on your back and stretch lengthwise with arms raised above your head and your toes pointing towards the foot of the bed. This helps the body’s relaxation process and prepares you to assume a comfortable sleeping position. If you have trouble falling asleep, say to yourself “I am asleep I am asleep” until you fall asleep. It works.
The two healthiest sleeping postures are on your back or side. Back sleepers should make sure that they use their pillow to reinforce the curve of their neck. Side sleepers need a pillow that keeps their neck from being kinked. Side sleepers can also use a “body pillow” to allow leg separation and a variety of sleeping postures.
Your bed should be large and firm enough for comfort. The type of sheets and blankets should be carefully considered to suit your needs in terms of warmth or coolness, thick or thin. When purchasing a new bed, lie down for a full 20 minutes, with your partner if you share the bed. If it’s not just right, it’s not just right. Your comfort is what matters most.
Your bedroom should be dark, quiet and the right temperature and ventilation for you.
Dr. Thorburn is a Registered Nurse and a Doctor of Chiropractic. She also has advanced training in nutrition.