10 Ayurveda Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep
One of the most important things from an Ayurveda perspective in terms of supporting our immunity is good quality and sufficient sleep. There’s nothing quite like a good night’s sleep is there? We wake up feeling refreshed and ready for the day ahead. This has an obvious impact on our experience of our waking hours but maybe less obvious are all the important processes that the body carries out whilst we sleep to support our ongoing health. Sleep is the time that the body can get to work with the vital internal repair and detoxification processes. Getting enough sleep – with it’s repair and detoxification processes – has significant implications for our immunity and our capacity to resist infection. In fact, studies have shown that sleep deprivation can lead to a reduction in white blood cells which form part of the body’s defence system. And yet a sound sleep each night eludes so many of us. Here are ten simple Ayurveda tips to help you find a better, less disturbed sleep at night.
TEN TIPS TO SUPPORT A BETTER NIGHT’S SLEEP:
- Try to keep to a regular daily routine of waking, eating, working and exercising.
- Avoid/reduce stimulants such as caffeine, alcohol and sugar.
- Walk in nature daily.
- Try to eat more lightly in the evening and eat not less than 4 hours before going to bed.
- Avoid stimulating conversations (especially upsetting conversations), and adrenaline-raising viewing or reading material in the evening.
- Turn devices off one hour before sleep and avoid taking them to bed with you.
- Apply some warmed organic cold pressed sesame oil to your temples, ear lobes and soles of the feet as you get into bed.
- Practice alternate nostril breathing daily: practice with retention in the mornings and without retention in the evenings. You can practice it immediately before sleep, sitting on your bed as a very nice way to pacify the autonomic nervous system.
- Turn the lights off by 10.15am at the lastest. In Ayurveda, around 10.00pm we move from a Kapha to a Pitta time of day which is going to bring that “second wind” we often experience late in the evening. It’s best to be in bed before this second wind kicks in. It is likely to prevent good sleep and leave you feeling tired and sluggish in the morning. There is a lot of sense in the old adage “An hour before midnight is worth two afterwards.”
- Enjoy this night time drink one hour before bed: you simply warm a cup of organic oat milk with a pinch of lavender buds. Make sure the lavender is for culinary use. Oat milk contains tryptophan which is a sleep supporting amino acid, plus it has a little protein in it which can help to keep you feeling full, stabilise blood sugar and reduce any snacking and cravings in the evening. Lavender has long been recognised as having sedative and calming influences on the nervous system and so is seen as a good support for sleep. Strain the drink into a cup and enjoy. It has a natural sweetness but you may like to add a little honey.
AYURVEDA HERBS FOR SLEEP: It may take time for these lifestyle adjustments to take root and have effect. And sometimes there are certain imbalances which have taken root in the body which Ayurveda herbs can be very effective in helping to bring back into an equilibrium: for example, there can be imbalances of the hormonal system and tendencies of the neurological system at play in insomnia. Herbs to help with sleep, the neurology and/or hormonal balance include brahmi, sankapushpi, valerian, chamomile, oat flower, ,passionflowers, ashwaganda. However, we understand in Ayurveda that it is better not to self-prescribe these herbs but to have a practitioner choose the best herbs for your constitutional type, your age, taking into account also any other symptoms you maybe experiencing which may be pointers to the root cause of your sleep disturbances, and/or any medications you may be taking. This allows for a precision prescription which by it’s nature is likely to bring greater and safer results for you. For details or to book a HEART OF ENGLAND AYURVEDA CONSULTATION please do contact me.
Get In Touch
07910 088 032