So, we’ve said ‘goodbye’ to British Summer Time and ‘hello’ to an extra hour in bed. Win-win, yes? Well, not necessarily. Time disruption can affect our circadian biological clock which can dramatically affect both our mood and sleep. According to Sleep Doctor, Michael Breus, it can take about one day to recover from each hour of time change.
Ensure you’re not left drained of energy over the winter months with these simple tips:
Set your alarm and do not snooze
Hitting the snooze button is not worth it as you will invariably have a disturbed and patchy sleep and feel groggier than you would have had you got up immediately. Get up on the first alarm, hydrate and have a shower to make yourself feel instantly more awake.
As the winter months approach and our exposure to sunlight reduces, we need to boost our production of the feel-good hormones with Vitamin D-rich foods. Where possible increase your intake of fatty fish, cheese,egg and dairy and grain products fortified with vitamin D.
Get outside and be active
If you work indoors 9-5 it can sometimes feel like you are living your life in darkness. Sunlight helps us to stay alert and feel awake so when we don't get enough sunlight during the winter, we tend to feel more lethargic during the day. Get some precious sunlight minutes during your lunch break or first thing in the morning and stay active. Easier than done in the winter months, but it can help burn off excess energy and lead to a deeper sleep.
Create a sleep friendly environment
Get the basics right by creating the perfect sleep sanctuary. Keep the room temperature slightly cool and keep it consistent. Invest in a good quality bed and mattress, and change to a warm feather and down 10.5 tog duvet. Keep clutter and technology firmly behind closed doors!
Adopt bedtime sleep rituals
Avoid stimulants such as alcohol and establish a regular bedtime routine. This might include making a cup of warm milk, winding down with a good book, wrapping up in a gorgeous faux fur throw or listening to the radio. Try to establish a bedtime and stick to it. The routine will help your body adjust to the new time change.