Healthy Sleep Time Habits

By CHN Nutritionist May Lemon, RDN, CDN, IBCLC

Sleep is important for your health and well-being.  It helps regulate (control) your weight, memories, and hormones. A well-rested body helps your mood, productivity, and your overall health.

Practice good sleep habits:

  • Limit naps to less than 30 minutes.
  • Avoid caffeine and nicotine 2 to 3 hours before bed. They are both stimulants (stimulants make you more alert) and can disrupt your sleep.
  • Drink alcohol only in moderation (for women, this means having 1 drink per day and for men, 2 drinks per day). Avoid alcohol 2 to 3 hours before bed.
  • Try to avoid eating large meals 2 hours before bed.
  • Follow a relaxing bedtime routine. A warm bath, reading, and light stretches help your body wind down.
  • Avoid activities that can disrupt your sleep such as using the phone or tablet in bed, the news, or upsetting conversations.
  • Create a pleasant place to sleep. Comfortable pillows and mattress, dim lights, and comfortable room temperature can help you get better sleep.  White noise machines, eye shades, and ear plugs may also help you sleep.
  • Make sure to let natural light in to help control your sleep and wake cycle.

 

Make Your Own Sleepy Time Tea                 

Ingredients:

1 cup of unsweetened almond milk

1 tea bag of chamomile tea

1 teaspoon honey

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

½ teaspoon of lavender buds for cooking or use chamomile lavender tea

To prepare:

  1. Place the almond milk into a small saucepan and heat until very hot, but not boiling.
  2. Add the chamomile tea and lavender buds.
  3. Allow to steep 5–6 minutes.
  4. Remove tea bag and strain out lavender buds.
  5. Pour into teacup or mug.
  6. Stir in the honey and vanilla extract.
  7. Drink right away.