insomnia

Sleep Better Tonight!

One of the worst and most common occurrences for many is having trouble falling asleep (and staying asleep). The latest ideal quota is 7-8 hours per night. Aside from the usual suggestions of a dark room, comfy bedding, avoiding caffeine, here are some snack ideas that aren’t just healthy, but actually encourage a restful night’s sleep!

Your body and brain will thank you in the morning for choosing one of these:

  • Unbuttered Popcorn – The carbs help to create serotonin, a key relaxing neurochemical. Try this recipe I previously posted: A Tasty & Nutritious Snack
  • Oatmeal with Sliced Banana – Sleep is inspired by the hormone melatonin, but stress or excitement can disrupt melatonin’s release.  Both oatmeal and bananas contain sleep-inspiring melatonin. Bananas also contain serotonin and magnesium (a muscle relaxant).
  • Sesame Seeds – These little guys are one of the best natural sources of tryptophan aka that sleep-inducing amino acid we always associate with Thanksgiving’s main course (turkey). Try sprinkling them on salads, sandwiches, etc. I also love buying whole grain bread that has an outer coating of sesame seeds.
  • A 4-ounce Glass of Unsweetened Cherry Juice or Fresh Cherries – Cherries naturally have serotonin-inducing carbohydrates as well as melatonin. Try having some cherry juice/fresh cherries an hour before bedtime (in case you feel a small jolt of energy from the sugar) for some high quality zzz’s. Trader Joe’s “Just Cherry Juice” is a great option.
  • Red Bell Peppers - Researchers have found that vitamin C is excellent at reducing the secretion of cortisol, a hormone released in your body when you’re stressed. Calorie for calorie, red bell peppers give you more vitamin C than any other vegetable or fruit! If you can reduce your overall stress levels you are much more likely to have a restful night’s sleep.

{via}

Did you sleep well last night? If not, I really hope that these recommendations will help you!

Healthy Gift baskets for All Occasions & Ailments

This gift basket (pictured below) is called “The Better-than-Aspirin Pain Relief Get Well Basket” and is ideal for chronic pain sufferers (think arthritis), mothers who recently gave birth, or someone recovering from an injury, muscle strains, etc. Its contents are specifically geared towards pain, inflammation, and recovery with products like decaf green tea, spicy apple ginger chews, and dried cherries. There’s even a Pain Relief Recommended Food Guide included.

This is just one of many healthy gift baskets offered by WellBaskets.com. They even have baskets for anxiety sufferers, insomniacs, and diabetes sufferers just to name a few!

Photo Credit: WellBaskets.com

Check out all of the baskets here: WELL BASKETS

Some Benefits of Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender is probably my favorite essential oil. It really is such a relaxing scent and it can be used to help so many things!

 

Here are just a few things that lavender is good for:

  • headache and migraine relief
  • healing burns and insect bites
  • acne, psoriasis and other inflammations
  • stiff joints and sore muscle relief
  • relaxation
  • insomnia
  • hypertension
  • repelling mosquitoes

Lavender is one of only two essential oils that can be used on the skin without dilution (the other being tea tree oil)!

Use sparingly though. 

Examples:

  • A few drops to combine with a lotion or shampoo.
  • Just a drop or two to apply to any inflammation.

 

*Allergies – People with allergies should test an oil on a small area of sensitive skin (inside of arm).

*Pregnant – Check with your doctor before using any essential oils (Lavender usually does not appear on the AVOID DURING PREGNANCY list).

**Discontinue use at the first sign of any irritation!