Having trouble sleeping?
Astudy conducted in 2015 looked at sleep patterns among adults in 16 of Europe's countries and discovered insomnia being a widespread problem. In Poland about 31% wrestled with insomnia symptoms like difficulty falling asleep, waking in the middle of the night, or tiredness during the day, followed by Hungary (28.1%) and France (28%).
While researchers suspect that the discrepancies between the countries might stem from cultural differences of how “sleep problems” are defined, the numbers are still surprisingly high.
That means that up to one third of a nation sleeps poorly, at least occasionally!
Here are some simple steps that you can take to improve your sleep.
This point might sound simple and a bit boring, but it's considered one of the most important aspects of overall health by many health experts, especially those representing traditional healing modalities.
If you take a look at ancient medicine systems like Ayurveda or Traditional Chinese Medicine, they all seem to be recommending the same thing: a regular and harmonious lifestyle built around daily routines.
What does that mean for your sleep?
Try to wake up and go to bed at the same time each day, even during the weekends. While it´s tempting to sleep late on free days, it can actually disturb your sleep pattern in the following work week and eventually lead to a vicious circle of tiredness/oversleeping.
The benefits of a regular lifestyle extend far beyond better sleep. Following a daily routine has been found to reduce stress, aid mental health and support a healthy digestion.
Another frequently mentioned expert tip is reducing screen time one hour before bed. The blue light emitted by your cell phone screen is known to restrain the production of melatonin, the hormone that controls your sleep-wake cycle (aka circadian rhythm). The result? Difficulties falling asleep.
If cutting down on screen time is difficult you can also try special blue-light-blocking glasses. Astudypublished in 2017 conclude
The use of short wavelength‐blocking glasses at night increased subjectively measured sleep quality and objectively measured melatonin levels and sleep duration, presumably as a result of decreased night‐time stimulation of ipRGCs.
This is another tip that might sound ridiculously simple.
But as Marie Kondo puts it: "It's a very strange phenomenon, but when we reduce what we own and essentially 'detox' our house, it has a detox effect on our bodies as well."
If your bedroom is messy and packed with stuff, it is likely to impact your mind negatively. Think about it: If you are sleeping next to a pile of work documents or bills, you're probably more likely to worry about them before sleep which then adds to your stress and prevents you from relaxing.
It's also common that the bedroom becomes a dumping ground for laundry and other household items - quite the opposite of a peaceful retreat that supports peaceful sleep, isn't it?
Our tip: The internet is full of helpful decluttering tips. Find a method that works for you and find a suitable date for your clean-up mission. In addition: Make sure that your sleeping environment is cool and dark.
Meditation is a great way to “clean” your mind before sleep and let go of stress or worries of the day.
The effectiveness of meditation has been proven by severalstudiesand confirmed by thousands of people that practice meditation or yoga - plus it's totally free!
There's also interestingresearchthat suggests practicing Yoga Nidra (yogic sleep) on a regular basis can support healthy sleep.
Aromatherapy is an easy, safe and effective way to support good sleep. One of the most studied essential oils in this context is lavender oil.
Lavender is believed to relieve stress, anxiety and even mild forms of pain. It is also a popular ingredient of various supplements that were designed to support better sleep. In fact, it is even used in many hospitals and nursing homes.
Here's how to use it:
Other essential oils known for their calming effects include Chamomile, Ylang Ylang or Frankincense. The best way to find out what works for you is to test it.
The good advantage compared to sleeping pills is that essential oils (or supplements that include essential oils) are natura, safel and don't lead to addiction.
Make essential oils part of your bedtime routine to consciously calm down after a busy day.
Certain stimulants like caffeine can have a disruptive effect on your sleep.
In fact, research suggests that caffeine can disrupt the circadian rhythm — the internal clock that tells the body when to sleep and when to wake up.
In order to avoid such effects, experts recommend not to exceed four cups of coffee per day and avoid caffeine after 4 pm - assuming your regular bed time is around 10 pm.
Tip: If you are drinking lots of coffee throughout the day and feel tired all the time the reason could be excess caffeine. Keep this in mind when making adjustments to your daily routine!
Investing in good sleep is one of the best things that you can do for your immune system and overall wellbeing. Getting adequate not only enables the body to repair and rejuvenate, it also helps prevent excess weight gain, heart disease, and other health issues.
Oftentimes the solution to good sleep lies in simple yet powerful lifestyle changes. The first step to better sleep includes reducing stress wherever possible - in your schedule but also in your physical surroundings.
“Sleep is the Swiss army knife of health. When sleep is deficient, there is sickness and disease. And when sleep is abundant, there is vitality and health.” - Matthew Walker, scientist
More and more people worldwide are affected by visual impairment, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness or presbyopia. Common reasons for this are UV light, smoking, increasing age or an unbalanced, unhealthy diet.
But there are also a few tips and tricks with which you can support your eyes and maybe even prevent a visual impairment.
Sooner or later we will all experience it: Menopause!
Both men and women experience both menopause - although in different ways.
For women: Bit by bit, the ovaries stop working and produce less and less of the female sex hormone estrogen. The consequences: Ovulation and thus menstruation stop.
But that is not all. Menopause comes with a whole series of changes in our bodies. This is because, up to now, the hormones have fulfilled many different tasks. For example, hormones have slowed the loss of bone mass and kept our mucous membranes moist, which affects cholesterol levels.
For men: During climacteric, the body produces less of the male sex hormone testosterone. This begins gradually; menopause can start in men as early as their mid- to late 30s. At that age, the body's production of testosterone decreases by an average of one to 1.2 percent per year. This is why climacteric in men is also known as testosterone deficiency syndrome.
No wonder, that these changes in the body bring with them numerous consequences and side effects.
Very important for any change in our life is to listen to our body and accept that a physical change always requires changes in our health routine.
Healthy muscles need an adequate supply of vitamins and minerals. We have a total of 640 muscles - each one of them representing strength, endurance and mobility. Besides the well-known muscles, such as biceps and triceps, our organs and vessels are also made up of muscle tissue.
But unfortunately there are also many types of muscle pain. That's why it's important to train your muscles properly and provide them with all the vitamins and minerals they need to perform at their best.
In this article we explain which vitamins & minerals are particularly important and when muscle pain can be a deficiency.