Before-bed secrets to your sweetest sleep

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Before-bed secrets to your sweetest sleep

Before-bed secrets to your sweetest sleep
Your brain has been working overtime coping these days, and if you've noticed an uptick in restless sleep and vivid dreams, you're not alone.
Recent surveys suggest 74% of us are having trouble turning off our brain at night-and that's tripling our risk of weird dreams, nightmares and other sleep disruptions. The good news: These easy strategies can help you sleep soundly and wake calm, refreshed and ready for a new day!

Toss and turn all night?

Watching 30 to 60 minutes of TV as bedtime nears could be the ticket to deep sleep.
That's the word from Harvard researchers, who say upbeat programs, like reruns of The Carol Burnett Show or The Office, prompt your brain to release a steady trickle of calming, muscle-relaxing serotonin, cutting your risk of restless sleep in half.

Bothered by bad dreams?

Great news from Australian researchers:
Choosing what you want to dream about, then focusing on those images as you're bedding down, can cut the risk of bad dreams in half, improving sleep quality by 62%.
Explains psychiatrist Ron Kirov, M.D.: The brain is easily swayed, and having positive thoughts helps make dreams positive too.

Wake up feeling agitated?

While melatonin is good for sleep troubles, there's a catch: "In high doses, melatonin can cause nightmares, plus it doesn't help with stress", cautions Michael Breus, Ph.D., author of The Power of When.
GABA-a calming amino acid! British scientists say taking 500 mg. one hour before bed tamps down troubling dreams, so you wake 50% more relaxed and energized. Note: Check with a doctor before supplementing.

Startle easily during sleep?

If every little sensation seems to wake you, nibbling on 1 cup of cantaloupe daily can help you stay in dreamland. That's the word from University of Connecticut researchers, who say this juicy fruit brims with compounds (carotenoids and vitamin C) that calm overworked adrenals, cutting the production of sleep-sabotaging stress hormones by as much as 45% and adding up to 60 minutes to your slumber.

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