Getting a good night’s sleep on a consistent basis is a luxury for many people. However, running on empty drastically effects your body’s ability to perform and recover optimally.
Adults typically need 8-9 hours of sleep each night for function such as optimal cognition, the immune system, tissue repair, muscle growth and digestion. A lack of sleep makes you more susceptible to colds, increased cravings, high levels of stress hormones and a poor mood. These can lead to chronic health conditions such as weight gain, depression, anxiety and type 2 diabetes.
For those who exercise regularly, quality sleep is vital for your physical conditioning. Sleep deprivation hinders your body’s ability to repair tissue, release hormones and restore energy and fluid levels lost during your workout. Research into the performance of elite athletes shows poor sleep affects endurance, speed, accuracy and slow recovery post workout.
If you want to be at the top of your game, whether that’s in the workplace, at the gym or in general life, ensuring you get a good night’s sleep should be at the top of your priority list. Here, we’ve complied some of the must-have’s to get you sleeping at your best.
Ecosa Supportive Mattress
If you’ve had a bad back, you’d know a mattress can mean the difference between a restorative night’s sleep or walking like a zombie the next day. In fact, 1 in 3 people associate their poor sleep with back pain! The Ecosa mattress has been engineered to support your spine’s own unique alignment. This is achieved through the use of materials like memory foam and ergonomic support foam, as well as the option to adjust the firmness based on your personal preference. And the best part, if you find it’s not right for you, Ecosa accept free returns within 100 days.
Get it on ecosa.com.au
SleepPhones by Sleep Solutions
If you’ve been battling to keep ear plugs in or struggling with the discomfort of wearing your headphones during the night, it’s time to try a sleep headband. Made of super-soft fleece, SleepPhone are an ultra-thin aid with high-quality speakers that resembles a runner’s headband. These are ideal for those who enjoy listening to music as they doze or who sleep in a noisy environment such as a city apartment or next to a heavy snorer.
If you find yourself checking emails and scrolling through Facebook late at night on your iPhone or watching Netflix on your laptop, you may want to consider the effects of blue light exposure on your health. Blue light stimulates the cells in your retina which connects to the hypothalamus. This area of the brain greatly controls your circadian rhythm in addition to other metabolic functions.
Research has found exposure to blue light in the evening suppresses the release of melatonin. This makes it not only harder to fall asleep but also remain asleep. The software f.lux adjusts the light of your computer to resemble the time of day by slowly adjusting the colours on your screen.
Free from f.lux
It’s not just young kids who can benefit from a night time story. The Calm app’s Sleep Stories are popular amongst adults who typically toss and turn trying to get to sleep. These audio stories combine relaxing music and sounds with a soothing voice that will help you drift off to sleep and remain relaxed throughout the night.
Weighted blanket from Calming Blankets
Weighted blankets are one of the latest products that many claim have transformed the way they sleep. The heavy covering is designed to stimulate the feeling of being hugged and the deep pressure acts to essentially calm a stimulated nervous system. Great if you are feeling highly strung or are physical active in the evenings. The benefit of using a weighted blanket can be improved sleep duration, enhanced sleep quality and reduced anxiety.
Get it from CalmingBlankets.com.au
Night mask by ComfyMed
A completely dark room, free of any natural or artificial light is ideal for a restorative sleep. This is because your body naturally produces melatonin when the sun goes down. If you’re unable to make your bedroom dark or you are a night sift worker, wearing a night mask is the next best thing. But not all eye masks are the same. The Luxury Sleep Mask contours to your eye sockets and nose area providing the perfect fit. The addition of memory foam padding and an adjustable strap ensure ultimate comfort.
Get it from Amazon.com.au
Deep Sleep Pillow Spray by This Works
Sleep quality relies largely on your environment and its effect on your stress response. A peaceful environment can help to activate your parasympathetic nervous system and promote a better night’s sleep. Essential oils, in particular chamomile and lavender, are well renowned for their soothing effects on the nervous symptom. For those with stress, anxiety or insomnia, spraying your pillow with essential oils may help to break down the obstacles that are preventing you from having a good night’s kip.
Organic Sleep Tea by Love Tea
Continuing on the herbal route, therapeutic tea is a beautiful and effective way to relax the nervous system and encourage sleep onset as well as hydration. The Organic Sleep Tea by Love Tea is naturopathically formulated to combine some of the most potent herbs including liquorice root, chamomile and passion flower, into a deliciously tasting blend. We’re sure you’ll be relaxed and ready for a deep sleep after a warming cuppa.
Mega Magnesium Night by Ethical Nutrients
Magnesium is a key nutrient that is effective at relieving nervous system unrest and excitability. If you feel overstimulated at night or experience muscle soreness after a big workout, Mega Magnesium Night may help to improve your sleep onset, relax your muscles and support the functioning of your nervous system.
Taking melatonin can be an effective way to help regulate your body’s natural sleep patterns. For those who have had a few late nights in a row, who are struggling through jet lag or work night shift, supplementation can be beneficial. Just note, this is not a long-term solution, but a good solution to help get your circadian rhythm back on track.
Get it from Go Vita