The importance of sleep in relation to both physical and mental health is well known. Getting enough quality sleep supports healthy brain function, while in children, quality sleep supports growth and development. Lack of sleep on the other hand can lead to obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Nowadays, many people cannot sleep well or they are having trouble falling asleep at night. Stress, anxiety and the use of electronic gadgets just before sleep can have a negative impact in the quality of both sleep and life. That’s why it is important to organize your room and prepare yourself for a night of beneficial quality sleep.

Choose to paint your bedroom walls with pastel, white, light blue and light green colors for a peaceful quality sleep and avoid red, orange, purple, deep blue and brown colors as they can cause overstimulation and negative emotions.

Mattress and pillows play an important role in the quality of your sleep too. Choose anatomical pillows and avoid feather pillows if you are suffering from allergies. You can also spray the pillows with a few drops of essential oil, like jasmine or lavender! Concerning your mattress, it should be firm and flexible in order to allow your body to relax.

Ventilate the bedroom for 10 minutes before going to sleep and remove the flowers or indoor plants as they release carbon dioxide overnight.

It is also important to avoid using a computer, tablet or mobile phone and shut down the TV at least 30-45 minutes before going to bed.

Many studies have also shown that good nutrition is essential to avoid insomnia and have a good quality of sleep! There are foods that have a positive impact on the nervous system and promote the release of chemicals such as melatonin and serotonin which have been associated with relaxation and quality sleep.

Do you know what foods you need to eat in order to sleep better?

Almonds

A handful of almonds will help you sleep peacefully without a break. Almonds contain tryptophan and magnesium, two substances that can promote quality sleep.

Honey

Honey contains glucose, which instructs the brain to restrict the function of orexin, a substance that is directly associated with insomnia.

Whole grains

Whole grains contain B1 and B6 vitamins which improve sleep quantity and sleep quality. You can combine whole grains with honey that will help tryptophan, an amino acid, to travel directly to the brain, which the brain will turn it into serotonin and will improve the quality of your sleep.

Cherries

One of the best ways to sleep and avoid a midnight awakening is to consume melatonin. Cherries, as well as almonds and walnuts, are a natural source of melatonin and can improve your quality of sleep.

Herbal Tea

Drinking herbal tea can be one of the best choices for peaceful and quality sleep. Various types of teas such as chamomile, lemon balm, lavender, passion flower and lime blossoms can help the body to relax and sleep better.

Dark chocolate

Dark chocolate can help you improve your sleep as it promotes the production of serotonin, a hormone responsible for relaxing the body and mind. Have a couple pieces of dark chocolate during the day!

Bananas

Bananas act as a sleeping pill! This super food promotes melatonin and serotonin and improves the quality of your sleep. Eating banana before going to bed will give your body a good dose of magnesium and potassium which can relax the muscular and nervous system.

What’s New with Vicky

Since we are on the topic of sleep, instead of sharing “What’s New with Vicky” this week we figured we should share with you what Vicky’s routine is when it comes to sleep. In some ways she is a creature of habit and when it comes to sleep she definitely is! Here are some of Vicky’s personal rules that she sticks to on a daily basis.

  1. Vicky doesn’t own a television so it would be really hard for her to watch television before falling asleep, but she believes in the power of reading so she spends at least 30 minutes every night reading.
  2. She always drinks some type of herbal tea while she is reading her book.
  3. She always sleeps with a white silk pillow case.
  4. In the event that she might have trouble falling asleep, (which is not often) she will eat a frozen banana.
  5. No matter how late it is or how tired she is, she always makes sure to remove her makeup and use some type of oil for moisturizer.
  6. Sometimes when she feels like shutting out the world, she will sleep with a sleep mask.
  7. She doesn’t always succeed but she tries to sleep at least 7 hours. Of course for her clients she recommends at least 8. 😊😊

Weekly Read

Lack of sleep will affects everything. Not enough sleep makes us sick, tired and old.Click to read some sure ways to sleep better – no pills necessary!

Weekly Recipe

Before bed, have a cup of chamomile tea, as it acts as a mild sedative and calms your body!

You will need

  • 2 tsp dried chamomile flowers
  • 2 cups hot water
  • raw organic honey [optional]

Method

  1. Mix chamomile flowers in hot water and let it infuse for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Strain, add honey if you want your herbal drink sweet, and enjoy!

Health and Beauty Tips of the Week

  1. It is important to cleanse your face completely to be free of any makeup before going to sleep. Every night our skin starts repairing itself and the skin pores open up. If you don’t remove your make up you will probably wake up with acne and skin spots!
  2. Every night before bed, especially during winter, wash your hands with lukewarm water, pat dry with a soft towel and moisturize them with a good quality moisture cream. Moisturizing hand cream plays an important role in reducing skin dryness and roughness!
  3. When it comes to sleep, use silk pillowcases if possible. Silk contains essential amino acids that are beneficial to your skin. Plus, silk pillowcases will not give you the annoying pillow-lines on your face!
  4. Improve your sleep with a night shower! Get rid off of all the stress and all of the dirt you may feel with a hot shower. Don’t forget to leave enough time afterwards to allow yourself to cool off.

Ask Vicky

Q: My home is quite warm, and after a couple of hours of sleeping I wake up sweaty and I can’t get back to sleep. What can I do?

A: It is very important to have a steady temperature in your home since excessive heat and cold increase the number and duration of nighttime awakenings. The right temperature should be around 60-68 °F.

Q: Can I make up for lost sleep on the weekend?

A: Unfortunately, you cannot replace your sleep either on weekends or on your holidays! All you can do is to stick, whenever possible, to your daily routine, and sleep at least 6 hours.

Weekly Inspiration

“Sleep is that golden chain that ties health and our bodies together” – Thomas Dekker