5 Sleep Aids That Will Relax You Faster Than an NPR Broadcast
More than 95 percent of us use electronic devices within an hour of attempting shut-eye, inadvertently tricking our bodies into thinking it’s not nighttime. So we’re all getting junk sleep. But once you’ve banished your iPhone to the living room, how can you reset your body to a deeper, faster sleep mode? Try these biohacks to sleep better.
Mix Up Powdered Relaxation
Try this new powdered drink mix with water or in a smoothie that won’t get you hungover: Powdered sachets of Dream Water contain melatonin, the popular sleep-inducing hormone we’ve all tried before. Add to that GABA, a brain chemical that relaxes you, and 5-HTP, a nutrient that converts to anti-anxiety brain chemical serotonin, and you’ve got a berry-flavored beverage that reminds us of Crystal Light. Click below for a free sample.
Listen to a Tiny White Noise Machine
Yup, you love your white noise machine for the whooshing that leads you right into dreamland (and away from your neighbor’s unfortunate blues guitar habit). But who wants to lug around that huge brick of a device when they travel? Try this new palm-sized white noise machine; it’s just as centering as larger models.
Set Your Diffuser on a Timer
We’ve all heard about the soporific effects of lavender, but if you’re not a fan of that scent or find it doesn’t relax you, try citrusy essential oils such as yuzu or bergamot. A few drops inside a sleek steam diffuser set for 60 minutes should be enough to quiet your mind, and you don’t have to leave the device on all night and risk waking up in a lemonade stand.
Hold an Inverted Pose
In general, inversions help us relax by causing blood to rush to our head, delivering oxygen and glucose to our brain and creating calm-inducing neurotransmitters like serotonin. Try a simple legs-up-the-wall pose (with your spine fully on the floor) or the more strenuous shoulder stand (in which your body is balanced on your neck and forearms, with your legs sticking straight up) for a count of ten or longer before bedtime.
Eat the Right Midnight Snack
If you order the cheesecake, then roll home to sleep, you’re likely to cause a blood sugar spike, then drop (dietitians call this reactive hypoglycemia). Chances are your body will wake you up by pumping out adrenaline and glucagon in an attempt to stabilize blood sugar. Instead, get to sleep and stay that way by having a snack with complex carbs and protein, such as almond butter toast with peaches.