20 December 2016
Clean Sleeping: the Health Trend of 2017?
‘Clean eating’: it’s a phrase we’ve all become well accustomed to in 2016. Its popularity has meant that it’s been a year for ditching crash diets and, instead, embracing sustainable, nutritious food.
But with 2017 fast approaching, there’s a new health trend on the horizon. It’s called ‘clean sleeping’, and the idea is simple: adjust your lifestyle to get the optimal amount of rest. Gwyneth Paltrow recently became an advocate of the trend, and has since urged others to follow suit.
We take a look at what ‘clean sleeping’ actually entails.
How sleep can help
Boxset binges, stress, working late: at some point, we’ve all missed out on a good night’s sleep. While the immediate symptoms of sleep deprivation may be tired-eyes and a fuzzy-head, there are lots of other worrying side effects to consider. From low energy levels and poor concentration, through to a weakened immune system and weight gain, a lack of sleep can manifest itself in a whole host of different ways.
In a piece published by the Daily Mail, Gwyneth Paltrow said, “My nutrition expert Dr Frank Lipman has explained to me that poor-quality sleep can be unsettling for the metabolism and hormones, which can lead to weight gain, bad moods, impaired memory and brain fog, as well as serious health concerns such as inflammation and reduced immunity (which can increase your risk of chronic disease).”
On the flip side, getting as much as nine hours of sleep can work wonders for your wellbeing. Dr Laura Lefkowitz, leading nutritional scientist and hormone adviser, explains:
“The simplest and most direct route to ageing gracefully, maintaining a slender waistline and enjoying glowing skin and lush hair is getting as much as nine hours of good sleep every single night.
That’s because the body repairs itself and detoxifies overnight, and it’s this process — happening efficiently — that allows you to look your best the next day.“
Dr Lefkowitz goes on to explain that a lack of sleep can affect the storage of fat in the body, suggesting that those who want to lose weight should perhaps enforce a strict sleep regime, as well as exercise and dieting:
“Tiredness is a stressor and stress stimulates the hormone cortisol and insulin, which triggers your body to store fat. Stress also reduces glucagon, the hormone that instructs your body to burn fat.”
How to sleep clean
With the benefits of a good night’s rest being abundant, let’s take a look at what you should be doing to give your body everything it needs to rest easy.
Don’t eat at bedtime
As bedtime approaches, it can be all too tempting to have a slice of toast or a bowl of cereal. However, eating after 8.30pm can cause your digestive system to work while you’re trying to sleep, which in turn, can cause restlessness. In order to allow your body enough time to properly detox and re-energise, you should keep a regular 12-hour fasting window. This means avoiding snacks after an early evening dinner.
A copper pillow
If you really want to wake up fresh-faced, try investing in a copper pillow. Studies have shown that by infusing fine strands of copper oxide into the material of pillowcases, it could help you to maintain a youthful appearance and minimise visible signs of aging, much like the effects of a skin peel. This is because copper is thought to be an essential mineral, known to play an important role in the healthy function of the skin.
Other tips include:
- Giving your feet a three-minute massage with thick moisturising cream.
- Leaving stimuli, such as the TV, outside the bedroom.
- Avoiding caffeine and alcohol in the evening.
- Keeping the bedroom cool and avoiding hot water bottles.
- Not doing anything mentally challenging within 90 minutes of going to bed.
Have you tried ‘clean sleeping’? Do you have any tips for getting a good night’s rest? We’d love to hear your thoughts on Twitter.