The Importance of Sleep
Updated: Jan 15
When I've discussed Women in the Workplace in the past, I've received a lot of great feedback from some of you. One of the most frequent topics/complaints that I have heard is the consistent struggle for a good night's sleep. Now more than ever, the importance of sleep needs to be emphasized in our lives.
Did you know that inadequate sleep can affect weight gain or loss, your mood, your fertility, and your memory? Caraka Samhita, one of the most relied upon Ayurvedic texts, states:
“Due to proper and adequate sleep, body tissues and doṣas remain in a balanced state of health, both physically and mentally. Caraka states that obesity and emaciation, happiness and sorrow, strength and weakness, virility and impotence, knowledge and ignorance, life, and death are all dependent on adequate and inadequate sleep.” - Caraka Saṁhitā (Sū 21:36)
Sleepless Nights: Getting to the Root of the Problem
I've noticed a problematic trend when it comes to sleep: We tend to focus on temporary solutions rather than getting to the root of the problem. Many of us opt for the Melatonin instead of questioning what may be causing our issues with sleep. If you're wondering what you should do to address sleepless nights, let's pause that line of thought and redirect our attention to the why of the problem first.
If you are experiencing insomnia or low quality sleep, there may be some habits that are getting in your way. Today I would like to introduce you to diet and lifestyle shifts as well as natural sleep remedies that will allow you a more satisfying bedtime experience. With a full night's sleep you'll show up as your best self when you are awake.
The Effects of Sleepless Nights on the Body
When we sleep the following occurs: Our blood pressure falls slightly, our pulse rate decreases, our muscle tone decreases, our skin vessels dilate, and sometimes, our gastrointestinal tract activity increases. Look at all that our bodies does for us when we rest! If this doesn't demonstrate the importance of sleep, I don't know what will. When we do not prioritize sleep we make it more difficult for our body to do its job.
Staying awake at night aggravate Vata and Pitta doshas, which can cause constipation, feelings of weakness, lack of concentration. At best, these unpleasant symptoms lead to irritation and at worst, overwhelm your life. So, let's address those restless nights with some natural sleep remedies.
Tips to Promote Healthy Sleep Habits
According to Ayurveda, the ideal amount of sleep for adults over 18 is 8 hours. For clients that I work with, I normally advise at least 6 hours and up to 8 hours each day. While the number of hours is important, I emphasize the consistency and time of night that you are going to bed. Going to bed by 10pm will align with our natural circadian rhythm and train our bodies to fall asleep consistently.
You may be thinking, "10pm?! That's way too early and I have too much on my mind to fall asleep." In order to slow your thoughts, try journaling about your day’s accomplishments and tomorrow's responsibilities. This simple act of reflection allows us to move on from the day and transition into a sleep free of unsettled thoughts.
Napping: Is it Beneficial?
I often get asked about naps. Under unprecedented circumstances a nap can be helpful but generally speaking, a healthy person should not sleep during the day. The only exception is during the summer. The hot and sharp, pitta-like qualities of light will mitigate excess Kapha. In other seasons, sleep during the day tends to increase Kapha, which could lead to heavy energy, weight gain and increased mucus.
Take Steps Toward Remedying Your Sleep
I cannot emphasize the importance of sleep enough. By trying out these natural sleep remedies, you can easily boost your energy and overall sense of wellness each day. For the next week or so I encourage you to monitor your sleep. Ask yourself the following:
What time are you falling asleep?
What time are you waking up?
Is it the same time every day?
How do you generally feel in the morning?
If you are waking up or having trouble falling asleep, what is on your mind? The past or the future?
This is our starting point for a consistent and satisfying sleep. I cannot wait to connect with you to discuss how your sleep improves after trying these tips. The importance of sleep is real friends. Get some good rest!
Do you want to improve your sleep through Ayurvedic practices? Are you struggling to get a good night's sleep? Schedule your free breakthrough session and we will build a healthy and effective sleep routine to help you get the rest you need.