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5 Natural Ways To Sleep Better That Really Work

Everyone is looking to improve their amount and quality of sleep. Here are 5 natural ways to sleep better that really work.
5 natural ways to sleep better than really work

Sleep Is So Important

You can’t be optimally healthy without enough quality sleep. But, you can’t get good quality sleep unless you are healthy. It’s the epitome of a Catch-22. And really, what is more frustrating than not being able to fall asleep or waking in the middle of the night and having a hard time going back to sleep? Not much. But, don’t lose hope. There are many things you can do to help yourself sleep better, which will in turn give you more energy during the day and keep you healthier and feeling awesome.

Yes, I did say that there are many ways to improve your sleep. And there are. But, as with everything else involving food, herbs, and supplements, each person reacts differently to each method, each product, and each ingredient. This article focuses on 5 natural ways to sleep better that really work for almost everyone.

I would love to share all of the other ways with you too, but that’s better for a personalized one-on-one session so I can really delve into what’s going on in your wonderfully unique — albeit tired — body. We can even chat about it in a free phone consultation (I just love meeting all of you this way). So just CLICK HERE and you’ll be taken directly into my calendar where you can fill your name into a time slot that works for you.

Meanwhile, let’s get to these 5 natural ways to sleep better that really work.

Oh, and the reason I am specifically repeating that these are 5 natural ways to sleep better that really work, is because if you are like me, you’ve already tried a bunch of things that claim to do the trick, but…. ummmmm…. not so much…

Ugh. Sleep deprivation is the pits.

Let’s get this under control now.

Try All 5 Of These Natural Sleep Methods

1.  Practice Sensory Deprivation In The Bedroom

5 natural ways to sleep better that really work

Yeah, this sounds all sci-fi and tech-y, but it’s actually the opposite. In order for your body to be able to get into a completely restful sleep, your mind needs to be quieted. Quieting the mind is the hardest thing for many people to do. We spend our days running around, fixing problems, putting out fires, trying to be as productive as possible. And when we take our minds to a high level of thinking and productivity, it’s not possible to just turn them off.

So, what should you do?

First, examine your bedroom. Cover up any and all light sources. Cover the neon numbers on your cable box, the blinking light on anything that’s turned on, and make sure that there are no openings in your curtains or shades. Really, I mean NO light. Then, I want you to take it one step further: go buy a sleep mask. And wear it. Every night.

Next, put your cell phone outside of the bedroom. I know, this is hard for a lot of people, but here’s a way to make it easier: go into the settings on your phone and set the important people you are worried about missing an emergency call from as favorites. Then go into your privacy settings and set it up so that between the hours of 10:00pm and 8:00am, only calls and texts from favorites are allowed to come through. Now, you can turn the volume up on the phone so you can hear it from the bathroom, the hallway, or a nearby room. This should ease your mind so that you won’t be afraid of missing an urgent call.

Now, here’s a harder one, but try it: Get into bed about no more than an hour before you want to actually fall asleep. Don’t turn on the TV. Don’t bring your computer or phone with you. Read a book or a magazine, or meditate. The blue light from electronics activates your brain too much for sleep-prep. The longer you can cut yourself off from electronic screens before bedtime, the better you will sleep. And, just as an aside, you can buy a pair of blue-light-blocking glasses and use them for the latter part of the day when you are looking at a screen… this will help calm your mind also.

2.  Take A Magnesium Supplement At Night

This really works if you are magnesium deficient… and so many people are. If you are already taking a magnesium supplement, you don’t need to take more, just simply take the supplement before bedtime at night instead of some other time during the day. If you are sure you are not magnesium deficient, then there’s no need for you to take magnesium.

There are many different kinds of magnesium supplements on the market. For sleep purposes, my favorite lately is Neuro Mag. I find that it helps promote sleep without effecting the digestive system. Be sure to check with your doctor to find out if there is a better type of magnesium supplement for your needs.

3.  Drink Dark Cherry Juice

5 natural ways to sleep better that really work

Dark cherries contain melatonin, which helps promote sleep. Sure, you can eat a bowl of cherries during cherry season, but my favorite thing to do is to buy a bottle of organic pure dark cherry juice, and drink an ounce or two before bed. Not only does this help with sleep, but it tastes really good and satisfies those nighttime sweet cravings.

In Chinese medicine, we also know cherries to be a longevity food that promotes general health.

4.  Take Reishi Spore Oil At Night

Reishi is amazing. It’s a Chinese herb and a mushroom that acts as a superfood. In Chinese medicine, we use it for longevity support and we take it every day in many different forms. The Chinese name for reishi is Ling Zhi. It’s also known as Ganoderma. But, whatever you call it, it is like the rockstar of Chinese herbs. This medicinal mushroom calms the mind, reduces anxiety, relieves restlessness and boosts the immune system. Yup, it’s quite the multi-tasking shroom.

Reishi comes in many forms. I use a powdered form in teas and smoothies. There are also elixirs and tinctures available. But, for sleep, I recommend taking a reishi spore oil capsule before bed.

5.  CBD Oil

CBD oil is being touted as the greatest thing since sliced bread. I’m kind of new to it. When clients started asking me my opinion about it, I knew it was time for lots of research and testing on my part. CBD oil is derived from the cannabis plant and has long been used for various types of pain relief. The main psychoactive compound in cannabis is Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — this is not a part of CBD oil; there is no “high” associated with CBD.

So, I researched. And I tested.

And I tested again.

And again. Using myself and others as guinea pigs.

And, I’m here to tell you that CBD oil as a sleep aid is an awesome thing.

When taken in the correct amount, CBD can calm the mind and stop all of those racing thoughts. And if you can do this, you can sleep.

There is really no danger to trying it. I do know one person who didn’t like the way it made him feel, but there are no real side effects and, in almost every case, myself and my test subjects, slept better. A lot better.

You just need to play with the dosage a little bit because CBD oil is a multi-tasking oil. Whenever something is great for a variety of conditions, it will require different dosages to help with the condition you are aiming to help. You wouldn’t take the same amount of CBD for pain relief as you would for sleep. But, there are no hard and fast rules — you kind of have to play around.

The most common best dosage for sleep that I found, in the brand of CBD oil that I chose to use and test, was about a half of a dropper under the tongue before bed. For me, I tend not to have much trouble falling asleep, but I sometimes wake in the middle of the night and have some difficulty falling back asleep. I found that I didn’t need to take the CBD oil before bed, but if I take it when I wake up at 2:00am, it’s easy to fall back to sleep.

Please, if you decide to jump on the CBD bandwagon, look around and do some research because you need to make sure you buy a quality product from a reputable company. I’m happy to share my favorite brand with you — just ask me in the comments below and I’m happy to share.

Be Patient And These Sleep Aids Will Work

I know how hard it is to be patient. Especially if you are sleep deprived. But, like anything that’s worth it, these things take a little time to build up in your body. Some things, like the CBD may have a more immediate effect. Others, like the cherry juice, will have a great effect if you use them consistently every night.

So, be patient.

And, also, remember, I’m here to help. You can ask me a question in the comments below, or you can sign up for a free phone consultation with me. Either way, I’m here for you. Now, go get some rest. And relax.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Energy Boosting Red Smoothie

There’s a lot of talk about green smoothies… but red ones are awesome! Try this energy boosting red smoothie!

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Pineapple Turmeric Smoothie

There are so many healing ingredients in this pineapple turmeric smoothie… you can feel the energy as you drink it!

pineapple turmeric smoothie

It’s Memorial Day and it’s raining. To many people this would be an unhappy turn of events, but I have to say, for me… not so much. The last 3 days were gorgeous. They were filled with beach, BBQ and friends. So, a rainy gray day is not so bad because I get to do all of the things I would never do if it was nice outside.

Everyone has one of those to-do list to get through. For me, that list is overflowing with the not-so-fun tasks involved in packing up my house and moving to an apartment. Ugh… the packing. Ick… the cleaning… But, I get to procrastinate and instead of getting through these arduous tasks as quickly as I’d like, I end up in my kitchen. A lot. And this Pineapple Turmeric Smoothie is my ode-to-sunshine creation on this dreary day.

Yellow is a happy color. And, I guess even more importantly, I had a big container of pineapple in the fridge that was leftover from yesterday’s day at the beach. And the cherries that you see on top — well, those are from the beach too… I just love using the leftovers in the fridge in new and delicious ways! So, when you make this smoothie, feel free to top it with whatever’s in your fridge…

If you want to try another “happy” smoothie, try my Orange Banana Smoothie recipe.

pineapple turmeric smoothie

There are so many great ingredients in this smoothie:

Pineapple is great for your digestion and it can help stop diarrhea. It’s especially good in the summer because it fights against heatstroke.

Turmeric is actually a Chinese herb (Jiang Huang). It is great for reducing inflammation throughout the body. If you suffer from aches and pains in your joints, try turmeric. It can help relieve menstrual pain and some other abdominal pains but, if you are pregnant, ask your doctor before you eat too much turmeric.

Maca Root is one of the superfoods I take every day. It has many healthy benefits including increasing libido, helping menopausal symptoms, relieving menstrual cramps, regulating hormones, and increasing energy.

Camu Camu is a plant-based powder that has the ability to boost your immune system and balance your mood. It has a large amount of vitamin C, can reduce inflammation, and can help improve mental clarity.

Lucuma powder is made from a South American tropical fruit. It’s sweet and contains a good amount of calcium, magnesium and potassium. It also has a great anti-inflammatory effect and can improve the condition of your skin. If you don’t have access to lucuma, you can use coconut sugar or add any sweetener that makes you happy.

Black Pepper is a Chinese herb called Hu Jiao. It’s used to alleviate diarrhea, vomiting and some stomach pains. When you combine black pepper with turmeric, the turmeric is more easily absorbed by the body, so this is a great combination!

In Asian medicine, we use coconut to strengthen the body, reduce swelling, and stop bleeding. Coconut kills viruses, bacteria, and parasites. It’s good for all types of infections and viruses in the body, including the flu, bronchitis, tapeworms, urinary tract infections, and herpes.

pineapple turmeric smoothie

 

Pineapple Turmeric Smoothie
Author: 
Recipe type: Smoothies
Cuisine: fruit, breakfast, snack
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
 
This smoothie is delicious! It's both sweet and tart and it will heal what ails you!
Ingredients
  • 3 cups cubed fresh pineapple
  • 2 cups ice
  • 2 tsp maca root powder (optional) (I use this one)
  • 3 tsp lucuma powder (or substitute sweetener of your choice) (try this one)
  • 1 tsp camu camu powder (optional) (here's one)
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder (I like this one)
  • 10 grinds of black pepper
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes (here's a good one)
  • ⅓ cup shelled pistachio nuts
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • fresh cherries for garnish
Instructions
  1. Put all ingredients, except the cherries, into your blender.
  2. Whiz it up until it's really smooth.
  3. Pour into glasses.
  4. Sip away!

pineapple turmeric smoothie

Cherry Berry Smoothie Bowl

This cherry berry smoothie bowl is delicious, healing, and has everything your body needs to stay healthy!

Cherry Berry Smoothie Bowl

I remember the first time I had a smoothie bowl. I had been seeing them pop up in photos all over the internet and I thought they were the most beautiful things. Yeah, I’m a bit of a freak that way — I think food photos are gorgeous the way other people think pictures of amazing sunsets are the best…

Then, I went to visit my daughter at college, and I went to a juice bar (I can find a juice bar in any city) and lo and behold they had a whole smoothie bowl menu. I ordered one, ate it, and then went back every morning for another one.

Smoothie bowls are the perfect way to start your day.

I still think these bowls are awesome. I put all of my greens and superfoods in them and I top them with such great healthy toppings. There are just so many options!! I get excited just thinking about it!

This Cherry Berry Smoothie Bowl was one I made for my husband. He’s a happy camper when he gets a great smoothie bowl for breakfast. As with all smoothie bowl recipes, feel free to add whatever ingredients you like and top it with things that make you smile.

I know the smoothie bowl craze is bound to end sometime, but not in my house! And, if you want a simple but great smoothie of a different type, try my Banana Chai Smoothie.

Cherry Berry Smoothie Bowl (close)-0558

Here’s some of what I put in my bowl:

Cherries are one of the best foods to combat many types of arthritis and joint pain. Also, because cherries help improve circulation, they can be helpful for post-stroke patients. In Chinese medicine, we also believe that cherries help to maintain the body’s “essence” or life-force. I always keep a bottle of organic black cherry juice in the fridge and I often drink a few ounces before bedtime or put a little in my smoothies. I also keep bags of frozen cherries in the freezer. And when fresh cherries are in season, you can always find a big bowl in my kitchen.

I love to add bananas to smoothie bowls; they give it a great natural sweetness and a nice thick texture. Bananas are good for your intestines (an old Asian remedy was to eat a banana every day to relieve hemorrhoids) and your lungs, and they even help relieve the effects of overindulging in alcohol.

Most people think of Popeye (I just realized I’m really dating myself with this reference!) and iron when they think of spinach. It is true that spinach contains iron, but it’s this vegetable’s lesser-known qualities that really hold my admiration. Spinach contains a substance that helps eliminate prostate cancer. It’s also great for your bones and also for memory loss. Diabetic patients may find that eating spinach helps combat excessive thirst and can even be good for night blindness. Spinach can inhibit the body’s ability to absorb calcium, so calcium-rich foods should be avoided when eating this leafy green.

In Asian medicine, nuts are known to be good for your brain, heart, skin and reproductive system. Almonds are particularly nutritious. They are a good source of protein and they give you energy. And, they are gluten-free. Almonds will help relieve a cough and asthma and are also good for constipation.

Figs are good for anemia, constipation, indigestion and fever. They are also good at fighting fatigue and boosting memory retention.

Lucuma powder is made from a South American tropical fruit. It’s sweet and contains a good amount of calcium, magnesium and potassium. It also has a great anti-inflammatory effect and can improve the condition of your skin. If you don’t have access to lucuma, you can use coconut sugar or add any sweetener that makes you happy, or just add more figs or a few pitted dates.

I add grass-fed gelatin powder to my smoothie bowls. Gelatin is great for your bones, joints, sleep, skin, and hair. It’s a superfood and it’s a protein. (See the recipe below for the one I like and where to buy it.)

Cherry Berry Smoothie Bowl

Cherry Berry Smoothie Bowl
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast, Smoothie Bowl
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
 
This smoothie bowl is deliciously refreshing and will energize you for the day; it's an awesome breakfast!
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Put cherries, cranberries, banana, almonds, figs, lucuma, and gelatin in a blender. Whiz it up until it's smooth.
  2. Pour into a bowl.
  3. Arrange toppings so it makes you happy.
  4. Enjoy!