7 Tips for the Best Sleep Ever
You’ve done all the obvious stuff—cut out late-night caffeine, made sure your bedroom is dark and cozy, avoided scary movies or struggling with your to-do list right before bed. So why are you still tossing and turning? “Certain habits you’re unaware of could be sabotaging your sleep,” says Kristen L. Knutson, PhD, assistant professor and sleep specialist at the University of Chicago’s Department of Medicine.
Watch the video: 6 Secrets to Get to Sleep Faster
Say so long to sleep
And, as you may know, lack of shut-eye doesn’t just leave you foggy the next day: Chronic, long-term insufficient sleep ups your odds of diabetes, depression, cardiovascular disease, even weight gain. So what to do? Try these unexpected tweaks, and wake up feeling incredibly well-rested.
Halt your afternoon habit
Choose sleep superfoods
If your stomach’s growling late at night, try a small bowl of cottage cheese with banana slices, another dish that serves up tryptophan. Other combos of healthy carbs and protein, such as milk and graham crackers or yogurt sprinkled with cereal, will also do the trick.
Sip wine sooner
Take an early soak
Stretch for sleep
Try this restful Reclined Butterfly pose from Tanya Boulton, managing teacher at Pure Yoga East in New York City:
Lie on your back with the soles of your feet together and your knees bent and dropping toward the floor. Place your arms, palms up, by your sides, keeping your shoulders back and your chest open. Close your eyes and inhale through your nose while slowly counting to four, then exhale while counting back down to one. Continue for 10 minutes, or as long as it takes you to feel fully relaxed.
Set the mood for slumber
Ban your BlackBerry
For tech-free zzz’s, disconnect an hour before bed, turn your smartphone off, and put any gadgets on an out-of-reach dresser or in another room so you won’t be able to grab it if you get the late-night urge. Also, invest in a real alarm clock (using your cell will only give you another excuse to keep it close)and get ready to wake up feeling so refreshed that you won’t even need to press snooze.