top of page

PURE BLISS BLOG

Stress and Sleep - "Why Can't I Get Enough Sleep"! - The Stress Sleep Cycle And Tips To Help you!

How Does Stress Impact Your Quality of Sleep? The Role of Nutritional Health in Stress and Sleep



Table of Contents:





April is Stress Awareness Month and for this Stress Awareness Month 2024 we, at Pure bliss Holistic Therapies, want to emphasise how even the smallest steps taken each day towards self-care and stress reduction can yield significant improvements in mental health over time and help to improve your quality of sleep as well.


We encourage you to focus on making manageable adjustments to your daily routine. While the impact of small actions on their own may seem little, the cumulative effects of these habits can end up being profound!


Stress Awareness month has been held every April since 1992 to raise awareness of the causes and cures for our modern-day stress epidemic. It is the time when we have an opportunity for an open conversation on the impact of stress. Dedicated time to removing the guilt, shame, and stigma around mental health. To talk about stress, and its effects and open up about our mental and emotional state with friends, families, colleagues, and professionals.


I have written many blog posts in the past about stress and the impact it can have on us, physically, mentally and emotionally. But this time I wanted to bring awareness to sleep and how much stress and general lifestyle changes can impact on our quality of sleep.


Plus the energy this April brings some of the biggest cosmic events of 2024, including a Total Solar Eclipse and the fated and rare meeting of Jupiter and Uranus.

All of this energy makes April a turning point month. Life will shift in new and interesting directions. Always a high-octane time, April is characterised by the fast-moving energy of the cardinal fire sign Aries—this is energy that pushes—pushes us to decide, to act, and to get out of our comfort zone. And it is even more intense this time around due to several highly significant transits set to unfold.



This is not a standard spring clean—but a complete overhaul. 


So some of you may be feeling the effects of April quiet strongly. Such as lack of sleep and disturbed sleeping patterns each night as this time of year and astrological energy can have an intense energy on us all, especially moon energy. You can read more here on one of my past blog posts on how the moons energy can have a big impact on women especially and our stress and sleep cycles. Please check it out here...


We all know how vital sleep is in healing and repairing our body, Your brain needs uninterrupted sleep that allows it to go through all five stages of each sleep cycle. This is especially important for the release of growth hormones, which occurs mainly at night during deep sleep. We all need to aim for at least seven - eight hours of high-quality sleep per night.


As many as 16 million UK adults are suffering from sleepless nights as a third (31%) say they have insomnia, almost half (48%) agree they don’t get the right amount of sleep.

On average, UK adults sleep for less than six hours per night; below the seven to nine hours sleep recommended by the National Sleep Foundation.

With women getting an hour’s less sleep on average than men (six hours vs. seven), they are also more likely to say they aren’t getting the right amount of sleep and are currently suffering from insomnia. Sleep disruption is very common among many of the ladies and men I have met over my 26 years in this profession, with more than two thirds (67%) of UK adults agreeing their sleep is often disturbed, rising to nearly three quarters (74%) of women.


But we also know that stress is rising modern life is hectic. If we’re not worrying about how to pay our bills, coping with challenges at work, building a career or bringing up a family, relationship conflicts, having too much to do, cost of living, and conflict at work. Both life events and daily hassles, often combined with inadequate sleep, are among our most common stresses.


We’re fretting over the news, isolated by pandemics or suffering from abuse on social media.

Stress is everywhere and if you’re having trouble coping, you’re not alone. It can be difficult to relax, unwind and take a breath sometimes.


We are stressed by the global economic recession, job insecurity, marital breakdown, and political and religious extremism. Past populations have been no less stressed by analogous cocktails of warfare, epidemic disease, unemployment, and poverty.

Today, we are more aware of what stress is and how it can affect us both physically and emotionally and a lack of sleep due to stress is only aspirating it even more.



So What Is Stress and How Can We Manage It?



Stress is defined as a physical, mental, or emotional factor that causes physical or emotional tension and triggers the 'stress response'. The stressor can be external (such as physical trauma, environmental changes or alterations in social situations and overwhelm) or internal (such as illness) Although everyone will encounter stress throughout their lives, but it is how this stress is handled by the individual is a determining factor in his or her level of health. While stress is a natural response, extreme or ongoing stress is a problem and is damaging to your health and can effect every part of your body.


The Stress Response: General Adaptation Syndrome:


Renowned stress researcher, Hans Seyle, coined the term the general adaptation syndrome.

The syndrome has 3 phases that are largely controlled by the adrenal glands:-


  • alarm,

  • resistance and

  • exhaustion.


  • Alarm/Your Fight or Flight Response - Which is your bodies primitive, automatic, inborn and our innate response that prepares the body to "fight" or "flee" from a perceived attack, harm or threat to your survival. This response is initiated and controlled by the sympathetic part of the autonomic nervous system. Normally the alarm phase is short lived.

The next stress phase allows the body to continue to fight a stressor beyond the fight or flight response.


  • Resistance Reaction or Adaption - Is controlled by hormones that are excreted from the adrenal cortex such as cortisol, often referred to as the 'stress hormone'. Hormones fuel the conversion of protein to energy, which ensures the bodies energy supply after glucose stores in the body are depleted. The hormones also promote the retention of sodium so that the blood pressure is kept elevated. If the stress is ongoing and sufficiently high, or the resistance reaction is prolonged, the body will enter the last stage of the general adaptation syndrome known as exhaustion.



  • Exhaustion - This is after a prolonged period of stress, ongoing stress or a stressful situation, the body loses its ability to resist (or adapt). This phase of the general adaption theory is often referred to as overload, burnout, chronic stress or adrenal fatigue. This stage is the most hazardous to the body as it can result in damage to nerve cells, the immune system and other tissues and organs of the body. Such as the Liver, Kidneys, Gall Bladder and the Heart.


Chronic stress is associated with many health conditions and disorders such as:


  • Angina

  • Asthma

  • Autoimmune disease

  • Common cold

  • Depression

  • Headaches

  • Hypertension

  • suppression

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome

  • Menstrual problems

  • Rheumatoid arthritis

  • Ulcers

  • Cardiovascular disease

  • Cancer

  • Strokes

  • etc...


Signs of Stress are:
  • Headaches and pain in the head and neck region

  • Chronic Pain - Aches and pains, such as chronic back pain, shoulder pain and body aches

  • Frequent Sickness - constantly having a cough or cold, weakened Immune System. Stress can increase the time it takes you to recover from an illness or injury

  • Decreased Energy and Insomnia, disturbed sleep, increased sleepiness and restlessness at bedtime

  • Changes in Libido - low sex drive and lower levels of sexual activity and satisfaction

  • Erectile dysfunction and risk of infection for male reproductive organs like prostate and testes

  • For women, effects menstrual cycle, irregular periods, heavier, painful periods and magnifies the physical symptoms of menopause

  • Digestive Issues - Diarrhoea and constipation, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) or Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

  • Nausea, vomiting or stomach ache

  • Appetite Changes - no appetite or a ravenously hungry or eating without being hungry, weight gain or weight loss

  • Depression or depressive episodes

  • Rapid Heartbeat - Increased heart rate and blood pressure

  • Heartburn

  • Acid Reflux - Increased Stomach acid

  • Rapid breathing and shallow breathing - breathing from the chest rapidly, instead of slowly from the stomach and hip region

  • Pounding heart - makes your heart pump faster and makes it work too hard for too long. When your blood pressure rises, so does your risks of stroke or heart attacks.

  • Sweating - Excessive Sweating

  • Irritability

  • Breathing Problems - makes it harder to breathe



The Adrenal Glands and Related Hormones

The stress response is largely governed by hormones that are released from the adrenal glands. The adrenal glands are two small organs that sit just above the kidneys. They are part of the endocrine system and are involved in producing over 50 hormones that are responsible for many essential body functions.


The adrenal glands work in conjunction with the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland in a system known as the Hypothalamus-Pituitary -Adrenal Axis (HPA Axis)


When the brain registers a source of stress (whether its emotional , mental or physical), the adrenal medulla releases the hormone adrenaline, which triggers the fight or flight response.

Corticosteroids are then released from the adrenal cortex to reduce pressure such as digestion, immune system response and anything else not required for immediate survival. (This is why it is thought that eating while stressed results in poor digestion of food).



The adrenals also balance hormones in the body such as:


  • Glucocorticoids - Which balances blood sugar levels, helps with energy and food metabolism, manages stress and controls the immune system. ( e.g., cortisol)

  • Mineralocorticoids - Which regulates blood pressure, manages blood hydration levels and regulates salt and water content in the blood.

  • Our Sex Hormones - Oestrogen and Testosterone.

  • Adrenaline - Which influences our cardiovascular function, blood sugar levels and the immediate stress response.


When these two little organs get over used and over worked with the intense ongoing stress, like daily stress at work and home life. It's no surprise that we eventually experience adrenal fatigue and our two little adrenal glands struggle to function its daily duties due to the onslaught of ongoing stress. So many of us have, or will have, at some point developed adrenal fatigue in our life.


If you suffer from adrenal fatigue, then there is a great chance that you will suffer from other health problems.


Post-menopause stress and adrenal fatigue go hand-in-hand.


Adrenal fatigue is one of the most widespread and commonly misdiagnosed condition. It is believed that approximately 2/3rds of the population are currently dealing with and have adrenal fatigue. The majority of which do not even know that they have it.

Adrenal fatigue is essentially a disruption of your adrenals caused by the inability of your adrenal glands ability to make cortisol in the amounts your body needs to be healthy and have an appropriate stress response. To find out more about Adrenal fatigue and how to heal from it, please check out my other blog post on this very subject here.




Sleep!





As we know by now that sleep is a much needed instrument for us to heal and repair overnight our bodies and our minds. And that sleep is a highly complex physiological process. It is essential to human health and wellbeing and impaired sleep or sleep deprivation is hugely detrimental to both our mental and physical well-being.


Disturbed sleep patterns over the long term are implicated in the development of many health conditions, including depression, chronic fatigue syndrome , fibromyalgia, heart disease, and even obesity to name a few.


The quality of sleep is needed varies by individuals , but generally , 7 to 8 hours are recommended in order for the average adult to maintain good health and well-being.



Health Benefits Of Sleep


Here are some of the many health and well-being benefits of good quality sleep each night:

  • Maintains a healthy heart

  • Lowers blood pressure

  • Boosts the immune system

  • Maintains a healthy brain

  • Improves memory and creativity

  • Promotes a healthy weight

  • Prevents obesity and weight gain

  • Balances Hormones

  • Prevents diseases and other health related issues

  • Improves digestion and digestive health

  • Repairs body cells

  • Restores energy

  • Alleviate stress and depression

  • Promotes good mood and positivity

  • Prevents diabetes

  • Fights inflammation

  • And so much more...



Normal Sleep Patterns


Scientists have discovered that sleep is not a passive activity , but a complex behaviour where the brain is highly active at times. There are two distinct patterns of the sleep cycle -


  • Rapid Eye Movement (REM)

  • Non-REM sleep


Dreaming occurs during the REM sleep cycle.


Non-REM sleep is divided into three stages. Sleep progresses and deepens, accompanied by slower brain activity and eventually progresses the REM sleep. At this stage, the brains activity greatly increases and dreaming occurs. The REM stage of sleep typically occurs within 90 minutes of sleep and lasts for about 10 minutes. Non-REM sleep is then resumed for another 90 minutes sleep cycle. An adult will experience on average five, or more of these sleep cycles per night.



Sleep and Hormones


Certain hormones are involved in regulating and maintaining proper sleep patterns and cycles or are released at various stages of sleep.


These are:


  • Melatonin - The most well-known hormone associated with sleep. It si secreted by the pineal gland in the brain, this hormone helps to regulate other hormones and maintains the circadian rhythm’s within the human body. The circadian rhythm is an internal 24 hour clock that regulates the time we spend awake and the time we spend sleeping. Melatonin is produced once darkness falls. It is theorised that the use of electronic devices, such as smart phones, laptops and ipads which all omit blue light, using these devises close to bedtime may inhibit the release of melatonin, thereby interrupting the body’s natural sleep cycle. Jet lag, shift work and poor vision are other factors that may disrupt melatonin cycles. also helps to regulate the female menstrual cycle. It also has a strong antioxidant effects and help with strengthening the immune system.


  • Growth Hormones - The release of growth hormones is thought to be a major reason for the restorative health benefits of sleep. It has been shown to stimulate tissue regeneration, muscle building, fat breakdown, blood sugar regulation and many other physiological benefits. Small amounts of growth hormones are secreted during the day, but it is during sleep that the vast majority of this hormone is manufactured. That is why good quality sleep is so important and imperative for the health and well-being of our body.


  • Serotonin - Is classified as both a neurotransmitter and a hormone, and is required to initiate sleep. The amino acid, tryptophan, stimulates the production of serotonin in the central nervous system. A low level of serotonin is associated with various health issues including anxiety, insomnia, carbohydrates cravings, depression and digestive problems and issues.


  • Insomnia - Is a very common health complaint among many adults. It is characterised by the inability to fall asleep easily at night, or the inability to stay asleep through the night. Most people can recover from a few nights of broken sleep or a short term sleep deprivation, however chronic sleep deprivation appears to result in neuronal damage, an acceleration in brain ageing and nocturnal elevations in the hormone cortisol.



Effects of Sleep Deprivation




  • Irritability

  • Cognitive impairment

  • Memory lapses or loss

  • Impaired moral judgement

  • Severe yawning

  • Hallucinations

  • Symptoms similar to ADHA

  • Impaired immune system

  • Risk of diabetes Type 2

  • Increased heart rate variability

  • Risk of heart disease

  • Decreased reaction time

  • Decreased accuracy

  • Tremors

  • Aches and pains


Other factors can also be:


  • Growth suppression

  • Risk of obesity

  • Decreased temperature


What Makes Stress and Lack of Sleep Worse?


Many things can impact stress and sleep. But there's no doubt about it that food and stress are linked.


  • The food you eat directly affects the processes in your body, and can either stress you out and affect your sleep. Anything that is low nutrient, high calorie foods, sugars, refined carbohydrates, salts, caffeine, processed foods, fried foods, foods and drinks with artificial colours, spicy foods and artificial flavours. And overeating also indirectly impact stress and the quality and duration of sleep because your body has to work harder to break everything down or release it from the body. This is what causes stress on the body and impacts your sleep massively.




These foods cause stress because they lead to a rapid increase in blood sugar levels, which your body must regulate it.


Every single system in your body relies on the food you eat and the drinks you drink. It is important to be mindful of what we are consuming on a day to day basis, as everything that we put into our mouth effects our bodies response to stress and our sleep patterns by interrupting them.


The lack of nutrients means your body doesn’t have what it needs to keep itself running smoothly.


It's like petrol in our car. Our bodies are complex machines that require premium petrol and that means putting in high quality foods into our body.


  • Plus your diet and what you consume on a daily basis has the ability to significantly alter your gut bacteria, which can then affect other metabolic processes, including sleep and stress. long term nutritional factors may also cause chronic inflammation in the body, which has also been associated with insomnia to be a contributing factor.


To learn more about how your diet effects your sleep and stress, please check out my very popular blog post about gut health - "It Takes Guts To Be Healthy" - The Importance of good gut health, to see how much the gut plays a role in your sleep, stress and health of your body here...


  • It's also being inactive and having very little physical exercise each day that has a contributing factor also. Especially if you are regularly saying to yourself and others that you are too busy to find time to exercise, or that you are too tired, or too stressed to exercise and move your body more physically.


We all know that exercise can help to benefit your sleep and reduce stress. Exercise in almost any form can act as a stress reliever and relax the body. Being active can boost your feel-good endorphins and distract you from daily worries. And can potentially help you sleep better, and getting an adequate amount of sleep may promote healthier physical activity levels during the day.



  • Pollution also can effect the body and cause stress and effect sleep due to your body Environmental exposures and poor sleep outcomes are known to have consequential effects on human health. Potential toxicological mechanisms are thought to include the direct effect of various environmental toxicants on the nervous, respiratory, and cardiovascular systems, oxidative stress, and inflammation. Additionally, everyday encounters with noise and light pollution can contribute to the effect of environmental factors on health.



  • Not taking enough time out for yourself and doing too much in your day, especially for other, it can all take over and feel overwhelming. Causing more stress, anxiety and effecting your sleep each night. That is why it is so important to look after yourself and to take time out for you.


I often ask my clients what do you do to relax?

What do you do for yourself each week that is just for you?

How do you manage your day to day life and find time for yourself, to look after your physical body, mental and emotional wellbeing?


I cannot recommend more for my clients that they priorities themselves and how they manage there busy lives and take more care in their wellbeing and health, helping to minimise too much overwhelm and stress and to help find more relaxation time to unwind and relax after a busy day, so that they can drift off to sleep and sleep well each night.


If you find it hard sometimes with overwhelm and stress and taking some time out for you? I would highly recommend that you check out my past blog post on this very subject on Self Care and taking time out for you to do something that you love that helps you to unwind, relax and create a healthy living way of life that serves you well. Please check it out here...



What You Can Do To Help You Get A Healthy Night Sleep Cycle And Reduce Stress?



Apart from a healthy diet, Lifestyle and gut health.


Vitamins play an important role in sleep health and managing stress, yet a substantial number of people obtain fewer vitamins than they need from their diet. Sleep and stress vitamin supplements are designed to compensate for vitamin deficiencies and help restore a healthy balance.




Here are some well needed supplements that can help with sleep and stress issues, essential nutrients that you body could possibly be lacking and in need of, such as:



Magnesium - is a mineral that is the fourth most abundant mineral in the body. It is necessary for the facilitation of hundreds of enzymes and is considered as one of the most important mineral needed to aid the bodies ability to cope with stress.


The physiological effects of stress can compromise the bodies magnesium levels. And when under continuous stress, blood pressure is elevated and adrenalin is increased. Magnesium is released from the blood cells and transferred into blood plasma, from where it eventually excreted into the urine. Chronic stress results in large losses of magnesium in the body.


The lower the magnesium levels are in the body, the more reactive to stress the person will become and the higher their levels of adrenalin in stressful situations will be. Higher adrenalin causes greater loss of magnesium from cells. By taking magnesium as a nutritional supplement daily can break this vicious cycle by raising blood magnesium levels and buffering the response to stress and building resistance.


The release of magnesium when the body is under stress has short-term physical and psychological benefits. Magnesium is both energising and calming. It is required for energy production, it it is also needed to calm the excretion of cells which occurs as a result of the stress-induced release of calcium.


Magnesium deficiencies are considered very common among adults. Without adequate magnesium, the body does not respond to stress as it should. Without the calming effects of magnesium, adrenalin and other stress hormones remain elevated. With ongoing stress, coupled with magnesium deficiency is considered a risk factor for high blood pressure and an increased risk of cardiovascular health disorders.


Symptoms of magnesium deficiency are:

  • Muscle tension

  • Muscle Spasms and twitches

  • Poor response to Stress

  • Craving salty foods such as crisps often

  • Difficulty falling asleep

  • Sensitive to load noises

  • Low appetite.

  • Fatigue and weakness

  • Abnormal heart rhythms

  • Headaches

  • Nighttime leg cramps

  • Numbness or tingling in the legs or hands


Magnesium has been subject to several studies on sleep behaviour. It has been shown to support healthy sleep patterns and help those suffering with insomnia, such as sleep efficiency , sleep time, and early awakening.




Vitamin B complex, - Each B vitamin serves a specific function in the body, from supporting blood production to promoting DNA repair.

Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 and B12 help to maintain a healthy nervous system. This is partly where stress relief comes in - a strong nervous system is essential to being able to effectively fight the symptoms of stress. And helps to improve sleep over time.


Taking a Vitamin B complex can be helpful as many of us are depleted from this essential vitamin complex of the B vitamins. Such as:

Vitamin B5, - which is sometimes referred to the anti-stress vitamin and plays a crucial role in the health of the adrenal glands and the adrenal hormones. As they help to calm the nervous system, managing chronic stress and regulating hormones which controls your energy, mood and much more.


Vitamin B6 - may benefit people with insomnia and may also improve sleep quality and decrease symptoms of restless legs syndrome, a sleep disorder that can keep people awake with an irresistible urge to move the legs.



Vitamin B12 - helps increase the body's production of melatonin, making it important for regulating sleep-wake cycles. Higher B12 levels have been associated with a lower risk of depression. Preliminary research suggests that a lack of vitamin B12 may be linked to short sleep, trouble sleeping, and excessive daytime sleepiness.


Vegetarians, vegans and those on restricted diets can struggle to get enough vitamin B12 to meet their body’s needs.

Also known as cobalamin, this is a water-soluble vitamin that is found in some foods such as eggs, milk, cheese, milk products, fish and shellfish and can also be created by bacteria in the small intestine.

It helps your body produce red blood cells, keeps your immune system healthy, helps release energy from food, helps balance brain function and development, boosts the hormones essential for sleep and mood and also creates DNA and RNA.



D3 Vitamin - Vitamin D3 Best known for contributing to bone health, vitamin D3 is also involved in areas of the brain that control the sleep-wake cycle. People’s bodies create most of their vitamin D3 in response to sunlight reaching the skin, with small amounts also coming from food and supplements. Getting enough vitamin D helps the growth and development of bones and teeth. It may also provide improved resistance to certain diseases.


Because of its connection to daylight, vitamin D3 may help regulate sleep timing and is thought to directly impact levels of melatonin, the sleep hormone. Vitamin D3 may also be involved in regulating other genes and substances that affect the sleep-wake cycle.


Vitamin D might play an important role also in regulating mood and decreasing the risk of depression, anxiety and low moods.


Several factors can affect your ability to get adequate vitamin D from sunlight alone.

You may be less likely to absorb enough vitamin D from the sun if you:


  • live in an area with high pollution

  • use sunscreen

  • spend most of your time indoors

  • live in a big city where buildings block sunlight

  • have darker skin (The higher the levels of melanin, the less vitamin D your skin can absorb.)


These factors can increase your risk of vitamin D deficiency. That’s why it’s important to get some of your vitamin D from non-sunlight sources.




Manganese - Manganese is a trace mineral that is essential to our bodies in small amounts. Because we cannot make it, we must obtain it in food or supplements. Manganese is a coenzyme that assists many enzymes involved in breaking down carbohydrates, proteins, and cholesterol.


It also plays a role in the production of thyroxine.

Thyroxine is a vital hormone, important for the normal function of your thyroid gland, which helps you maintain a proper appetite, metabolism, weight and organ efficiency.


It is also involved in the production of GABA (GABA promotes calmness, reduces anxiety, stabilises blood pressure and promotes restful sleep).




Zinc - Zinc is an essential nutrient that has many health benefits, including helping to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression for some people. It also helps to have less wake-ups in the night. It is an excellent & safe sleep aid; and also has a calming & antidepressant effect. Along with helping to regulate sleep.


Not getting enough specific minerals and nutrients can throw a wrench in how we feel. This includes getting enough zinc in our daily diet.

Zinc is essential for physical function, but it may also play a role in mental wellness. Maintaining adequate zinc levels can improve your overall well-being, helping you feel healthier and happier.


Zinc is quite a rare element - but it's one that many of us know quite well by name. One scientific study claimed that zinc makes up just 0.02% of the earth's crust, and is actually a lot rarer than many other elements that you probably haven't heard of.




Vitamin C - may help to protect the body against the damaging effects of stress. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps counteract oxidative stress. Oxidative stress occurs when unstable molecules build up in the body, potentially causing damage to healthy cells and tissues.

Poor sleep can contribute to higher levels of oxidative stress, and too much oxidative stress can also exacerbate sleep problems

Antioxidants, like vitamin C, may help control levels of oxidative stress, and in turn, optimal levels of oxidative stress promote healthy sleep.

Symptoms of certain sleep disorders may also be worse in people with high levels of oxidative stress. These disorders include restless legs syndrome and obstructive sleep apnea, a disorder characterised by lapses in breathing.



Vitamin E - Recent studies have linked vitamin E deficiency with short sleep, though it is unclear if supplements help increase sleep duration. Vitamin E may also improve sleep quality due to its actions as an antioxidant.

Vitamin E may help reduce night sweats for people going through menopause, which are often disruptive to sleep. Supplements containing vitamins C and E have also been found to improve symptoms of restless legs syndrome and obstructive sleep apnea.



L-Theanine - is an amino acid that is found in protein foods and in the green tea. Theanine appears to cross the blood brain barrier and has been shown to influence brainwave activity, such as neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin, which can help in stress, anxiety and depression, as it creates a sense of relaxation in 30-40 minutes of ingestion, by directly stimulating the production of alpha brainwaves creating a state of deep relaxation and mental alertness similar to that achieved through meditation. Helping to support those with anxiety and low moods as well as manage stress.


It can also help to improve sleep and quality of sleep.





Other things that you can do to help improve your sleep and stress management are:


1. Exercise… but maybe not right before bed


Exercise is a great way to de-stress. In fact, daytime exercise increases your sleep need and has been linked to better sleep. For some people, strenuous exercise too close to bedtime can interfere with sleep but for others it might not affect their ability to fall asleep.


2. Eat a balanced and healthy diet


Such as lots of fresh leafy green vegetables, fresh fruit such as Bananas, Nut Butter.

You need to eat a high quality diet of enough fibre, protein and plant based foods that will help nourish and sustain a healthy body.


3. Staying Hydrated -


Drinking plenty of fresh water daily is key to staying hydrated and well. When you are stressed you are more likely to become dehydrated and this will impact you ability to sleep well also.


4. Letting go of worry and constant thinking.


Taking more time out in your day for yourself to relax and unwind.


5. Try some mindfulness


Mindfulness and meditation have both become very popular and for good reason. Techniques involving these approaches allow you to relax and can help lower blood pressure and respiration rates, both of which are elevated by stress. Giving your brain some time to relax and rest is a great way to get you ready for bed.


6. Cut down on caffeine and alcohol


Having a glass of wine or beer after a long day may feel like it helps you unwind but just a small amount of alcohol can affect your sleep. A night cap may help you fall asleep when your head hits the pillow but the quality of sleep you get will likely be much worse.

Even though alcohol may shorten the time taken to fall asleep and can lead to deeper phases of sleep (at least initially), it may suppress other important phases of sleep such as rapid eye movement sleep (REM).


7. Dim the lights and ditch the screens


Light can be a big disrupter when it comes to sleep. A key signal that tells the body to start preparing for sleep is the hormone, melatonin. This hormone is naturally released in response to light levels decreasing in the evening but, in our modern world, we illuminate our evenings with artificial lighting.

This can confuse the body and interfere with the normal production of melatonin. In the evening it can help to dim the lights and make the room darker as this will help your brain signal that it’s time for bed.

Exposure to blue light from TVs, tablets, smartphones and computers can also interfere with melatonin production.


8. Enjoy a nice bath or a hot shower


A bath or warm shower before bedtime is a great way to relax. It relieves tension in your muscles and it can help you sleep. A hot bath or shower will also warm you up and when you get out your temperature will drop.

Scientists have found that a drop in body temperature actually helps us drift off so if your bedroom’s cooler than your warm bath, it’ll make getting to sleep easier.


9. Create a simple wind-down routine


We often create bedtime routines for babies and children but we don’t seem to realise that wind-down routines are actually extremely useful for children and adults alike.

Sleep loves routine so one way to prepare your body and mind for sleep each night is to keep to a roughly consistent routine every evening. You can incorporate some of the tips above into your wind-down routine and it can be as simple or elaborate as you wish.

The key is to try to follow it day in, day out.


10. Make your bedroom a haven of calm


To sleep well, you want your bedroom to be a place you look forward to going to when it’s time to sleep. There are many factors that go into creating the perfect bedroom setup, but ideally you want the space you sleep in to be somewhere you use only for sleep and sex.

If possible, your bed shouldn’t be where you go to watch TV, hang out or do work, because you want your brain to associate your bed with sleep. Try and keep electronics out of the bedroom and aim to make your bedroom as dark as possible, quiet and on the cooler side.


You can check out some of my other self help tips that can help also here...




And try some of these healing therapies that are fantastic for sleep and stress relief, such as:






Massage -


Any type of massage as long as it isn’t painful and uncomfortable as this is counter intuitive and will not allow the body to totally relax and to let go of the stress, you are more likely to hold your breath and tense up your muscles and cause more tension and tightness. Aim for a relaxing massage, something that includes the back, face, neck and shoulders and maybe the. hands and feet. So super relaxing for the body and the mind and it allows you time and space to relax and let go and drift off to sleep. If your not sleeping and feeling sleepy during the massage - then this isn’t the best massage for you. You don't have to be awake and fully aware of what is going on, but you should feel safe and comfortable throughout your massage, if you are not? It is time to find a new massage therapist that allows you to feel fully comfortable and relaxed in there presence and confident in there massage abilities for you to be able to drift off into a peaceful slumber...



Facials -


Facials are so much more than just an hour of indulgent pampering. They have enormous benefits to the health and wellness of your skin and body, both in the short and long term.

By improving the health of your skin with regular facials, this will in turn improve the overall functionality of your body’s internal workings. Since the skin is the largest organ in the body, this system as a whole interacts with all the other body systems.


Here’s how.


Your skin, directly interacts very closely with both your Circulatory system and Nervous system. Relaxing sensations of touch assists the circulatory system in blood circulation and lymphatic drainage, while massage also helps to relax the nervous system so the body can rest and repair itself.

To sum it all up- your skin influences all your other body systems by helping the other organs to recharge and de-stress.



Reflexology or Foot Massages


Reflexology is a non-invasive complementary holistic healing therapy that can be effective in promoting deep relaxation, wellbeing and balance within the body and the mind.

It can help reduce stress in peoples busy lives and can help in building good health and resilience.

It is a touch therapy that is based on the theory that different points of the feet, lower leg, hands, face and ears all correspond with different areas and systems of the body such as the bodies organs which are either mirrored or reflected in areas of the feet, hands, face and ears. By applying different amounts of pressure to the feet, hands, face and ears ( depending on what area you wish to have treated when you are booking a session) this allows the body to release any tension that has built up, allow vital energy to pass through the bodies systems until it reaches the area in need of healing and balancing.

A reflexologists touch can also help to calm the nervous system, promoting a deeper state of relaxation and other benefits just like any form of massage. Due to calming the nervous system the body then has space and time to heal naturally and to help release any emotional and mental distress allowing your mood to be improved and to reduce stress within.



"Reiki" Energy Healing


Reiki is a simple, natural and safe method of spiritual healing and self-improvement that everyone can use. It has been effective in helping with stress and sleep issues and always creates a beneficial effect.

It helps to reduce stress and promotes deep relaxation and harmony in the body and the mind. Helps to improve sleep and can allow a much deeper sleep during or after sessions.


I always recommend Reiki if you are finding life tough or challenging and need some time out for yourself to be able to let go and relax and have time for yourself. Energy healing and Reiki is so good at healing the physical, mental and emotional body on all levels and I highly recommend it to all my clients. New or old.




Sound Healing Sessions - Sound Healing Massage



Sound healing massage therapy has been developed by drawing on ancient Eastern practices and modern scientific research into the effects of sound and vibration

 Sound healing is based on the frequency of sound.

 

The combined sound and vibration can induce a deep sense of meditative relaxation, which helps to de-stress the mind and body. And can help to reduce stress, by relaxing the nervous system making it easier for you to sleep better.

 

It's a massage on a cellular level. Deep healing that leaves you feeling lighter, calmer and nourished to the core. I highly recommend for all to experience sound healing and a sound healing massage. Benefits can be profound on a cellular level.



Holistic Wellbeing Coaching and Counselling Sessions


Holistic Wellbeing Coaching is a powerful form of life coaching that approaches every aspect of a persons life - body, mind and spirit, in relation to the whole. It helps us to improve different areas of our life, work, friendships, personal development, intimacy, wellbeing and family. It also helps you to access your full potential and make transformational changes and gives meaning to daily living and is so unique in understanding the strain that chronic stress and lack of meaning can place on an individual.

A holistic wellbeing coach is going to help you function in a way that promotes emotional wellness throughout your entire life, including your body, mind, and spirit. It can also be a great help if you are suffering with stress, feel overwhelmed and not sure how to cope in a difficult situation, or your sleep is suffering. Then Wellness coaching is worth trying and committing to.


Holistic Counselling is a unique form of counselling that emphasis on the whole. The wholeness of ourselves - The Body, mind and spirit.  Holistic counselling is a gentle and compassionate form of therapy that may help you help yourself when you feel the need for support or assistance. 

​It is an alternative to traditional counselling and psychology and may be successful on individuals who have tried traditional methods and are searching for something different and ‘wholistic’. 

 

It takes into account the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual contexts, as well as the psychological ones and uses a range of healing modalities and techniques, in an integrated way, to address the needs of the client.

All methods used are gentle, safe and support natural healing principles. To help you to break free from behaviours that limit you at all levels, so that you can find within the strength and resources to make the changes necessary to overcome difficulties and to move life forward.


This is perfect for stress relief, and improving your mental agility and helping to improve your sleep, as having someone to talk to can be really cathartic.


Nutrition and Supplement Recommendations



There are multiple benefits to good nutrition. It's essential for the maintenance and health of you and your body. You are what you eat essentially.

If you eat unhealthily then your more likely to suffer ill health and problems later in life. But if you eat well, healthy and the correct food for your body type. Then it will not only keep you healthy but will increase our confidence and make us feel better about ourselves and our bodies. And when you eat healthy it shows in your smile, skin, your attitude and well-being.

 

If you want to look good, look and feel younger, healthier and more radiant than ever?

Then Healthy nutrition is imperative for beautiful soft, smooth, healthy, younger looking skin and a healthy fit body, this is the main area that I advise all my clients to seek out first. Healthy beautiful insides first before healthy beautiful outsides. Its always an inside job. 

 

With the right nutrition and correct eating habits it can actually perfect your complexion, clear up any blemishes on your skin and increase cell renewal to keep you looking younger and healthier.


My husband Ravi Singh is a fully qualified nutritionist for over 11 years and he also manages the Henley-on-Thames Health food shop called "Bodywise"


Ravi can help you to find the right nutritional needs that your body is lacking or in need of to help you to manage stress and to improve on sleep and a healthy body in general.


Plus please check out Ravi Singh's recent ebook on Vitamins and Minerals, its on amazon and you can check it out here...


If you or anyone you know would like help on any of the above? Or if you would like to book a relaxing treatment or Counselling or any other session that I have mentioned above?


Please email me at kellysinghinfo@mail.com or my husband Ravi at info@bespokecooking.co.uk

to find out more. We look forward to connecting with you and of being of service in any way we can.



Please like 👍 this blog post if you found it useful and please share - sharing is caring...


Plus check out the rest of my blog posts below on similar topics.


Have a great day


Best wishes


Kelly

x

Pure Bliss Holistic Therapies







Comments


bottom of page