There are many reasons why we can’t get enough sleep, and stress and aging aren't always the problem.
Staying late in front of the computer or browsing on your mobile, the never-ending to-do list waiting for you in the morning, skipping meals and eating late or loading up on refined sugar in the evening – these are just a few reasons why your brain stays alert and prevent you from falling asleep easily.
Fortunately, there are solutions!
You can improve your sleep with these some bedtime rituals, like taking a relaxing bath before going to bed, going to sleep at the same time every night, avoiding bright screens within 2 hours before bedtime (be it tablet, computer or mobile), cutting back on caffeine and staying away from big meals and alcohol in the evening – these are some simple rules with long term effects.
But you can also improve your sleep and reduce the amount of time you need to fall asleep by having a bedtime elixir made with some simple, but very effective ingredients.
BANANA AND CINNAMON TEA
This simple “tea” combines vitamins and minerals from two natural sources (banana and cinnamon) to help you fall asleep and stay asleep. Banana supplies your body with potassium which helps regulate blood pressure and supports the nervous system. It also contains magnesium, which helps relax the muscles, and vitamin B6, which helps your body create the chemicals that regulate your sleep cycle.
Studies have shown that cinnamon helps regulate the blood sugar levels in the body. Spikes in blood sugar can contribute to sleeplessness, so a dose of cinnamon before bed can potentially offset this effect. The combination of cinnamon and banana, provides a powerful yet natural tea that can work wonders for your sleep! Here’s how to make it.
1 organic banana, peeled
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Bring cups of filtered water to a boil, a small pot.
Add the peeled banana to the boiling water, continue to simmer for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
Stir in 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon into the banana tea. Sieve in to a mug and enjoy warm before bedtime.
COCONUT OIL, HONEY, HIMALAYAN SALT REMEDY
This amazing combination will help your body get into “sleeping mode”, as it regulates the production of the stress hormone cortisol, thus allowing you to have deeper rest.
How does this work?
Coconut oil will prevent the blood glucose levels from increasing, eliminating the main cause of insomnia.
Additionally, coconut oil includes healthy fats that energize your body through the night, so you will wake up refreshed and revitalized.
Honey will set your body into sleeping mode, as it contains the glycogen your brain requires. Lack of glycogen triggers the adrenal glands to release stress hormones like cortisol or adrenalin. Increased concentration of stress hormones won’t let you fall asleep for the whole night.
Salt reduces the stress hormone levels and boosts the production of energy. It regulates the bodily functions and the sodium reduces the production of stress hormones – adrenalin and cortisol.
With this natural remedy you will have quality sleep, awake rested and ready to face the day.
Mix the coconut oil and honey well and salt well. Consume the remedy and drink one glass of warm water.
TURMERIC AND COCONUT MILK ELIXIR
Turmeric-infused coconut milk is delicious and warming. This ancient elixir will improve digestion, calm the nervous system and prepare you for restful sleep. Best results will be seen over time as the ingredients in the elixir continuously work to repair and replenish your body.
Coconut Milk And Coconut Oil – the fiber and fat content of coconut each promote and support balanced blood sugar, and therefore restful sleep.
Turmeric – is known to reduce inflammation, support brain and joint health; liver protective.
Ginger – is a natural anti-inflammatory that can help relieve symptoms of arthritis, bursitis and other musculoskeletal issues; particularly calming for the digestive tract. For sleep, it’s the melatonin present in ginger that seals the deal!
Nutmeg – Acts as a natural relaxant in small doses.
Black Pepper – The piperine in black pepper enhances the absorption of turmeric. It also contains essential nutrients, including manganese, iron and vitamin K and is commonly used to calm digestive issues. So you should always take turmeric and black pepper together.
4 cups coconut milk
2 tsp powdered turmeric or 2 tbsp peeled, fresh turmeric
2 tsp powdered ginger or 2 tbsp peeled, fresh ginger
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
1 tbsp coconut oil
2 tbsp maple syrup, raw honey OR a squirt of liquid stevia
12 peppercorns, gently crushed
Combine everything except the coconut oil into a saucepan and bring to a simmer.
Let the mixture bubble gently for about 5 minutes, turn off the heat and let it rest. After about 5 minutes of cooling, strain the mixture through a few layers of cheesecloth or a very fine strainer if you prefer a smoother texture.Stir in the coconut oil.
Taste and add maple syrup, honey or stevia if desired!
CHERRY, CHOCOLATE BED TIME SMOOTHIE
It’s a simple smoothie that brings a sense of calmness and peace and is perfect for that post dinner sweet tooth.
Cherries are one of the only foods with natural melatonin, a hormone that controls our sleep cycles.
Bananas are rich in potassium, magnesium and tryptophan, all excellent for helping induce sleep. Magnesium helps to calm the mind and relax the muscles. It not only helps with falling asleep but also helps with the quality and duration of sleep.
The effect of tryptophan found in unsweetened cocoa powder can be heightened by adding a little almond milk, which also contains tryptophan. This essential amino acid helps stabilize the body's serotonin levels. A shortage of serotonin, on the other hand, can lead to sleep disorders.
Milk and yogurt are rich in calcium and L-tryptophan which helps in the production of melatonin.
The Sleep Smoothie is quick, simple and tastes amazing!
1/2 Cup Yogurt / Coconut yogurt
2 Cups Frozen Cherries
3Tbs Raw Unswetened Cocoa Powder
1 – 2 Cups Milk / Coconut milk (depending how thick you like it)
Place ingredients in a blender, blend till smooth and serve.
KALE, KIWI, BANANA SMOOTHIE
Say good-bye to your sleep issues with this insomnia-fighting smoothie, loaded with ingredients high in tryptophan, protein and Omega-3.
Kale – these reliable greens will give you a hand for falling asleep easier, just as they does for detoxifying and nourishing your body. The nutritional profile of kale contain all nine essential amino-acids, including tryptophan, which your body converts to serotonin, a neurotransmitter hormone that regulates the sleep/wake circle and is used by the pineal gland to synthesize melatonin, the hormone related to a healthy sleep.
Banana – a great source of potassium and magnesium for relaxing the muscles and creating an alkaline environment for your body cells to restore during nighttime. Bananas are also high in tryptophan, the key ingredient for a better sleep.
Yogurt – and other dairy products contain tryptophan and also calcium, which helps your body to synthesize it to produce the melatonin hormone. While sipping warm milk calms you before bedtime, your body might find it difficult to digest, and this is why natural yogurt, which contains probiotics, is a safer option
Kiwi fruits – another sleep quality promoting ingredient because they are high in antioxidants (which recent studies have link to a better sleep) and serotonin, the hormone that helps initiating sleep and maintaining it during the night.
Flax Seeds – are high in omega-3 essential fatty acid, which reduces anxiety and stress (some of the top causes of insomnia) and also tryptophan.
Almond butter – contains a high concentration of magnesium, which relaxes your muscles, and protein for helping you switch the alert adrenaline cycle to a rest-and-digest cycle for good sleep.
You can combine some of these or throw them all together in a blender to create a wonder smoothie to help you say goodbye to insomnia.
Better Sleep Evening Smoothie
• 1 cup kale leaves
• 1 cup natural yogurt
• 1 ripe banana
• 1 tbsp raw almond butter
• 2 tsp flax seeds, ground
• 2 kiwi fruits
• 1/2 cup almond milk
Blend all the ingredients until creamy and drink straight away.
GOOD NIGHT, SLEEP TIGHT
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Results may individually vary. Information and statements made in articles of The Health Coach Academy Blog are for education purposes only and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. The Health Coach Academy does not provide medical advice, prescribe medication and treatment plans, or diagnose illness. The views and nutritional advice expressed by The Health Coach Academy are not intended to be a substitute for conventional medical service. Should you have a medical condition or health concern, consult your physician.