Getting sound sleep each night is extremely important for good health. It lowers your risk of obesity, heart disease, and stroke. Proper sleep also helps your brain function efficiently, improving your learning ability, memory, decision-making, and even creativity. Even though sleep is so important, the number of people suffering from poor sleep is increasing steadily. There are many factors that can contribute to poor sleep such as stress, lack of physical exercise, and an unhealthy diet. It is important to keep in mind that in order to get good sleep, you need to practice good sleep habits like going to bed around the same time each night, keeping technology and other distractions as far away as possible when you are trying to fall asleep, not consuming sugar or caffeine too close to bedtime, and making the room you sleep as dark as possible. Though these practices are very useful for many people, for some, it is just not enough. They may have to take the help of some sleep-promoting supplements. Here are some natural aids that will help you sleep better.
Melatonin is a hormone that is naturally produced by your body. Its main function is to signal your brain when it is time to sleep. Its production naturally rises in the evening and falls in the morning. Taking melatonin supplements improves daytime sleep duration and quality, which is beneficial to shift workers, and it improves the overall sleep quality of those suffering from sleep disorders. Though melatonin supplements can help you sleep better, you need to consult your doctor before taking them as they are found to be safe when taken for a short period of time, but not much is known about their long-term safety.
Magnesium is important for brain function and heart health. Insufficient magnesium levels in your body can contribute to insomnia and troubled sleep. Taking magnesium supplements can make it easier for you to fall asleep as it has a relaxing effect on the body due to its ability to regulate the production of melatonin. Magnesium also increases the levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid in the brain, which has calming effects.
Lavender has a soothing fragrance that calms your mind and body to help you sleep peacefully. It is especially useful to those suffering from mild insomnia. Lavender aromatherapy is as effective as taking conventional sleep medications but without the side effects. You need to be careful about taking lavender as a supplement though, as it may lead to nausea and stomach pain.
Glycine is an amino acid that plays an important role in the nervous system. It helps improve the quality of sleep by lowering your body temperature during bedtime, signaling your brain that it is time to sleep. By taking glycine supplements before going to bed, not only will you sleep better but will also feel less fatigued the following morning. Glycine is available as a pill or as a powder, which can be consumed by diluting with water. However, you need to consult your doctor before consuming glycine supplements on a regular basis. You can also include glycine-rich foods in your diet like spinach, kale, cabbage, kiwis, bananas, meat, eggs, fish, beans, and poultry.
5. Valerian Root
Valerian root is a herb that is used to treat symptoms of depression, menopause, and anxiety. By taking 300 to 900 mg of valerian root supplements before bedtime, you can improve the quality of your sleep. Short-term use of valerian root appears to be safe for adults but may have minor side effects such as dizziness. It is better to avoid this supplement if you are pregnant or lactating.