This year, we’ve faced a major global pandemic that is the Covid-19 Virus. In order to protect ourselves and our society, it’s been imperative for all of us to stay at home and follow social distancing. We’ve also all worked from home. In a situation like this, our daily eating and sleeping habits have likely gotten disturbed.
When it comes to sleeping, our body follows a specific pattern which is called as the body clock. Once it gets disturbed, it’s a big struggle to get back to your regular ‘Routine’ pattern. So today, I am going to tell you ways you can practice to avoid getting your sleeping pattern disturbed. Just be consistent in following these simple steps:
1. Rise early: Avoid waking up anytime after 9:00 AM. If you wake up later than that or around afternoon, it throws off your circadian rhythm completely off track and your routine further starts getting disturbed.
2. Move your body: Since we’re all quarantined or were quarantined, there have been very limited exercise options, but there are very easy and effective ones to still continue doing at home. You can do about 100 skips on a skipping rope or about 25–40 Suryanamaskars (sun salutation) everyday. Exercising increases happy hormones like endorphins which keeps your stress levels low, thus helping you sleep well at night.
3. Eat healthy and clean: Most of your body’s hormones are formed and released in the gut. Your gut is your second brain. So when you eat unhealthy foods that cause gut toxicity or gut inflammation, your mind is also anxious and stressed. So it’s always best to eat healthy and clean in order to keep your mind calm and peaceful, which is in turn the main factor for a good quality sleep.
4. Avoid heavy meals, alcohol, cigarettes and caffeine in the evening: All of these can disrupt sleep. Heavy meals or very spicy meals and alcohol can cause gastric discomfort.
5. Have your dinner or last meal before 7:30 PM: During the old days, people had their first meal at sunrise and last meal before sunset, and hence they were all very fit. Majority of the Lifestyle and Mental disorders that we face today didn’t exist then. This goes to show that the credit goes to their meal timings to a very large extent. When you have an early dinner, the process of digestion is completed before you fall asleep. This ensures that the blood supply is uniformly distributed to your brain and overall body (whereas when you have late dinner and immediately fall off to sleep, the blood supply is mainly ongoing in the gut for the process of digestion. Thus, resulting in incomplete and disturbed sleep). So make sure you eat before 7:30 PM and you’ll be able to sleep well by 10:00 PM.
6. Avoid using phone 2 hours before sleeping: Using your phone constantly and checking your message updates, social media updates or watching late night movies keeps your brain awake causing you a lot of anxiety which also affects your sleep pattern.
7. Dim the room light, create a calm relaxing environment and listen to some meditating or calming music an hour before your sleep time. This will help you fall asleep faster.
8. Practice deep breathing at least 15–20 times and meditate before going off to sleep. This will reduce your stress and anxiety levels.
Following these tips consistently will definitely help you optimize your sleeping patterns. And lastly, try to stay positive and optimistic in these times. Remember we’re all in this together and this too shall pass.
So stay home. Stay healthy. Stay safe. Stay positive. Stay grateful ❤️
Thank you! :)
*Copyrighted material of Dr. Rohini Somnath Patil
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