By: Carley Castelein, PharmD Candidate 2018, Drake University
It’s the beginning of the new year and everyone is making resolutions to uphold through out the year but perhaps there is something holding you back from meeting these goals. It may in fact be your sleep habits. Did you know that 25% of US adults report insufficient sleep or rest at least 15 out of every 30 days? The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute says that adults should be getting 7-8 hours of sleep a day. View recommendations for other age groups here: https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/sdd/howmuch.
Sleep is crucial for your body to restore itself and can have an affect on a number of endocrine, metabolic, immune system and memory functions. These functions will have a larger implication on your healthy eating goals, exercising ability, motivation and so forth! Utilize these tips for healthier sleep habits and maintain good sleep hygiene throughout the year.
- Avoid stimulants such as caffeine and nicotine close to bedtime.
- Exercise to promote quality sleep, as little as 10 minutes can help!
- Avoid large meals within 1-2 hours of bedtime
- Try to expose yourself to natural light throughout the day
- Go to bed at the same time each night and rise at the same time each morning
- Avoid bright screens within 1 hour of bedtime
- If you can’t fall asleep, get up and do something then return to bed when you feel tired
Prioritizing your sleep and making a commitment to good sleep hygiene may be what is in between you and achieving some of your goals in 2017. To read more about the effects of poor sleep visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at https://www.cdc.gov/sleep/about_sleep/index.html.