A good night’s sleep is just as important as regular exercise and a healthy diet.
Research shows that poor sleep has immediate negative effects on your hormones, exercise performance and brain function .
For both adults and children, it can also cause weight gain and increase disease risk .
In contrast, good sleep can help you eat less, exercise better and be healthier .
Over the past few decades, both sleep quality and quantity has declined. In fact, many people regularly get poor sleep .
If you want to optimize your health or lose weight, then getting a good night’s sleep is one of the most important things you can do.
Here are 17 evidence-based tips to sleep better at night.
Increase Bright Light Exposure During The Day
Your body has a natural time-keeping clock known as your circadian rhythm .
It affects your brain, body and hormones, helping you stay awake and telling your body when it’s time to sleep .
Natural sunlight or bright light during the day helps keep your circadian rhythm healthy. This improves daytime energy, as well as nighttime sleep quality and duration .
In patients with insomnia, daytime bright light exposure improved sleep quality and duration. It also reduced the time it took to fall asleep by 83% .
A similar study in the elderly found 2 hours of bright light exposure during the day increased the amount of sleep by 2 hours and sleep efficiency by 80% .
To date, most of the research is in patients with severe sleep issues. However, even if you have average sleep, daily light exposure will most likely help improve it.
You can achieve this by getting daily sunlight exposure or, if this is not practical, invest in an artificial bright light device or bulbs.