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The holidays can be a frenzy of checklists, social engagements, too much to do, and not enough time to do it.  People tend to put a lot of pressure on themselves to make holidays perfect.  Often, diet plans and sleep go by the wayside.  Try to stick to a few basic rules, especially through the stress of the holiday season.  Regular, good quality sleep is a necessity for good health, your diet plan, and your sanity!

Give Up the Snooze Button: Yes, it is so easy to push snooze one (or a few) times and feels like such a good idea at the time.  However, the “sleep” you are getting in between the alarm is low quality and can actually make you feel more sluggish and fatigued.  It is much better to set your alarm for a realistic time and actually get up.

Keep Your Sleeping Quarters Dark: Eliminate all light from your bedroom.  That means everything: the lights from any electronics, adjoining rooms, and windows.  If you cannot seal all sources, consider sleeping with a blackout eye mask at night.

Wear Socks: Research have shown that keeping a consistent warm temperature on your hands and feet is a predictor to how fast you will fall asleep.  Try putting on a pair of socks as part of your nighttime sleep ritual.

Mattress Quality: If you are tossing and turning on a regular basis and having overall poor quality of sleep, be sure to consider the state of your mattress.  How long have you owned it?  How is the quality of the mattress (is it uniform or does it have dips in it)?  Is it the right size?  Consumer Reports suggest that people should buy a new mattress every 5-10 years.  Be sure to buy the correct mattress for your specific needs.

Do Not Try to Fight Insomnia in Bed: If you do not fall asleep within 30 minutes, most sleep experts agree that you should get up and do something else until you feel sleepy again.  This means something calming and with low light (like reading a book) to relax the mind.  No devices!  Trying to stay still in bed and talk yourself into being tired will only make matters worse.

Eating Near Bedtime is a No-No: A successful diet plan does not go hand-in-hand with late night eating nor a good night’s sleep.  You want your body to wind down in the evening instead of spending its time digesting a late meal.

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