*Guest Post*

couple sleeping in new york sitting on a long stone bench with the woman resting her head in man's lap with glossy skyscraper background and blue sky

A Bit About Derek:

Derek Lotts Bio pictureDerek Lotts is a regular contributor to Smooth Decorator and writes about décor, gardening, recycling, ecology and everything related to home improvement. He thinks all of these topics fall under the self-improvement category. He believes in the power of sharing ideas and communicating via the internet to achieve betterment. You can find him on Facebook, Twitter or Google+


Sleeping should be on the top of your list of priorities. However, working long hour shifts, spending a lot of time in front of the TV, not exercising, etc. can all lead to unhealthy sleeping patterns. If you are having trouble sleeping and don’t want to take those sketchy sleeping pills, then let me introduce you to some of the most effective natural remedies that will improve your sleep and health in general.

baby asleep on man's chest

Valerian

Valerian is an amazing medicinal plant. Even though it has many uses, it is mostly used as a sleeping aid. This plant has proven time and time again that it helps with anxiety, falling asleep, and of course, with the sleep quality.

The results aren’t always immediate and it can take several days to build up in your body to make a difference but avoid taking it long-term as too much can damage the liver. It comes in two forms. Either you can brew a valerian tea or, if you don’t want to drink fluids before sleep, then you can take it in capsule form.

Acupuncture therapy

Acupuncture therapy has been around for thousands of years. I know some of you are skeptics when it comes to these ancient medical treatments, but acupuncture works even if don’t have to agree with the spiritual side of it.

Releasing your energy and chakras by sticking needles in someone’s body does sound a bit silly. However, the therapy itself is extremely calming, and by sticking needles in your body, your brain will start to release neuro-endocrine chemicals like melatonin and tryptophan. Sure, it might not work for everyone, but it is a sucessful home remedy for many.

acupuncture therapy, needle being inserted into leg

Exercise

Exercising is crucial if you want to live a healthy life and poor sleeping is usually a way of your body telling you that something is wrong. If you work long hours and spend most of your free time on the couch, then it’s time to renew your gym membership.

Not only will your sleep improve, but you will also feel more energised in the morning. I was kidding about the gym membership though; any type of exercise will do. You can run, take up a sport such as basketball or netball, lift weights, hike, etc. As long as you exercise on a regular basis, your sleep should improve substantially. One last thing – don’t exercise right before going to bed, do it at least few hours before or your body will be too amped up to fall asleep.

lady doing yoga and stretching

Lots of fluids

Sure, drinking valerian tea and exercising regularly will probably help you fall asleep, but none of that matters if you are not taking proper care of your overall health. One of the biggest mistakes people make is forgetting to hydrate themselves and drinking a glass of water in the morning simply isn’t enough. Try to develop a habit of drinking water, fresh fruit juices, teas, etc. throughout the whole day and you will feel a lot better within a week. Additionally, if you don’t want to spend money on bottled water and your tap water is of poor quality, then you should consider installing one of those water purification systems.

UV technology, in particular, has become increasingly popular. The UV purification system can be installed under a sink or it can go through your whole house. In any case, a UV Steriliser will purify your water without the use of any harmful chemicals like chlorine.

herbal tea in two glasses next to each other on a white background.

Cut the bad habits

Lastly, I want to talk about the bad sleeping habits that can contribute to poor sleep quality. 

  • Firstly, no coffee after 2 pm because although coffee is great, I love it too, the effects of coffee linger in your body longer than you think.
  • Secondly, avoid pets in the bed because they can interfere with sleep. Sure, they are cute and will keep you warm, but you will often end up sleeping in uncomfortable positions just because your dog or cat is sleeping between your legs.
  • Finally, no eating before bed. Stuffing yourself with food right before your bedtime should be forbidden and frankly, eating late at night is extremely unhealthy. Your body shouldn’t be forced to digest anything right before sleeping and it can contribute to weight gain too. 

While there are many more natural remedies to improve your sleep, I have found these ones to be the most effective. Just remember that it takes time to build a healthy sleeping pattern. So, live a healthy life full of exercise and water, drink a cup of valerian tea from time to time, and you will see the effects in no time.

5 natural remedies to improve sleep and overall health guest post. From your lifestyle to what you consume as well as habits that could by leading to poor sleep quality. #health #healthylifestyle #sleep

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