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You Can Sleep Better After Age 40

You Can Sleep Better After Age 40

Sleep is one of those necessities that some take for granted, others forgo, and many long for more. So, why in this day and age are lots of us having trouble getting enough sound sleep? Yes, that may mean you!

Added to that, did you know if you sleep fewer hours per night you could be losing muscle instead of fat? According to a randomized trial of overweight subjects conducted by the Sleep Research Society, researchers…

“Found that sleep restriction resulted in less loss of fat but greater loss of lean mass among the total mass lost, despite similar weight loss between the two groups.” Sleep, 2018 

Let’s talk about getting enough muscle-retaining sleep! Like really getting into the realities of what’s behind sleeplessness. Or nights fraught with waking in a cold sweat. Perhaps it started with wondering why you’re not dreaming like in the past. Yup, what’s up with that?!

You’re about to read what’s going on with sleep patterns after you hit the big 4-0, how changes affect your health, and steps to take to sleep better. That includes practical, common sense things to do, including supplements to add to your self care routines.

Are you ready? Cozy up now as we share information and tips to make you sigh with sleep-weary relief. 

Americans are Sleep Deprived 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has sleep deprivation info from 2014. Basically, if you’re aged 45-54, you may be part of the 39% of people getting less than seven hours of sleep per night. As you’ll read shortly, this duration of sleep may put you at risk for various health conditions.

Added to that, some geographic areas have higher risks than others. Taking a look at your county can be quite revealing, maybe even surprising.  

The Price of Disrupted Sleep

One could try to put a national price on disrupted sleep. Chances are the figure would be through the roof. That’s because sleep disruption is responsible for accidents and catastrophes.

Plus it contributes to health concerns. Those include a bunch of chronic conditions, such as:

  • High blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.
  • Overweight and obesity, depression, and reduce immune function.

On a personal level, think of making a costly goof with a credit or debit card because you’d been up at all hours with a sick child. Or perhaps you were burning the midnight oil on a crucial report that was due in no time flat. That’s to say nothing of being on the road with a bunch of trucks, knowing that the drivers may be working long hours. So when you read this quote, think about how the increase in sleep disorders can also mean accidents. 

“When duration of sleep drops below seven hours, and especially when it starts to move toward six and half hours or less, a number of different disorders begin to increase in prevalence,” says Dr. Dinges, a sleep expert at the University of Pennsylvania. He and other sleep scientists describe a “sweet spot” of sleep duration needed for health as being about seven hours.  Pharmacy & Therapeutics

Consider too the data from the sleep restriction study we quoted. Those people were losing only one hour of sleep five nights a week. Yet, catch this, they had “less proportion of fat mass loss.” If you’re interested in losing weight while retaining muscle mass, better get your zzzzz’s. Here are tips for doing so.

7 Tips for Better Sleep

Sleeping well involves adjustment to certain habits and parts of your life. The first point to reckon with is that the plus-40 physiology is different from that of a twenty-something. Added to that your responsibilities have likely increased, contributing to sleep challenges.

Fortunately, most of these are as simple as changing some behaviors. Increasing a few and limiting a couple of others. Making a few fixes to your sleep setting are on the list, most of which are easy and not costly. We want you to sleep better, not spend a fortune doing so!

1.- Add Exercise To Your Routine

Physical activity in just about any form supports sleep. Tips for exercising include:

  • Selecting enjoyable activities.
  • Being reasonable with your expectations of duration and expertise.
  • Knowing that even relatively short lengths of time matter as they add up.
  • Avoiding exercise too close to when you turn in.

2.- Manage Stress

Yes, this is a huge topic unto itself! Even then, there are quick ways to accomplish this by: 

  • Getting in touch with your responses to stressors.
  • Those can be physical and emotional as in knotted brow or stomach, or spinning thoughts.
  • Look into the use of the breath and being mindful to manage stress.
  • As much as possible, steer clear of environmental stressors such as toxins, noise pollution, and other forms of overload.
  • Yup, physical activity helps, as does…next up, nutrition!

3.- Nutrition as a Sleep Aid

Most likely you’ve read about not eating or imbibing too close to bedtime. That’s sage advice. Other tips for nutrition helping your sleep quality include:

  • Yup, eat whole foods such as fresh fruits and veggies, and fish.
  • If you want a snack prior to bed, keep it light, such as a small bowl of oatmeal.
  • Be judicious about how close to bedtime you drink fluids, especially alcohol.
  • Try a bit of tart cherry juice before bed to boost melatonin.

4.- Limit Electronics

Chances are you’ve read this time and again. Regardless of the device, TV, phone, computer, and so on. 

  • The big deal is that their function and light engage your brain.
  • Your brain does not follow the ‘off’ switch of your device, taking up to an hour to tone down from electronic stimulation.
  • This is sobering info, especially when you read on about the effects on melatonin.

5.- Add White Noise

Yup, enter the paradox. Turn off devices but turn on white noise. Or, perhaps you like the pink type!

  • For some it’s a fan or a purchased white or pink noise machine.
  • Regardless of what works, the desired outcome is to interfere with external noises or the dreads of dead quiet.

6.- Change To A New Bedding

It’s true that a new mattress and bed frame are costly. Then again, think of the overall price you’re paying as you sleep fitfully. 

  • The bedding you add can begin with the right mix of sheets, pillows, and blankets or comforters.
  • You may want to hold off on big expenditures until you try the above ideas.
  • Plus, read on about our line of supplements that will help you to drift off to a sound, satisfying sleep.

7.- Add Natural Supplements To Aid Sleep

It goes without saying that the quality of one’s diet can vary. Much the same goes for varied work schedules and amounts of stress. These are a few reasons why supplements for sleep assures that you’re getting what you need.

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Magnesium

When it comes to looking for a supplement that has multiple benefits, one place to begin is with magnesium. There are several forms that vary with how well they’re absorbed and the effects to expect. Magnesium glycinate supports healthy sleep and aids in reducing the inflammation that’s associated with chronic conditions.

“Insomnia is a common symptom of magnesium deficiency.” Psychology Today, 2018 

Melatonin

You’re likely one among many who has read about the sleep benefits of melatonin. This is a good time to get back to limiting electronics. Why’s that?

  • Melatonin is produced in your brain in response to darkness.
  • That’s right! When there’s no darkness, there’s limited melatonin production.
  • Or, there’s at least delayed sleep signals until the brain is able to respond.

Your best bet when considering melatonin use is to read up on it. Its effects can vary based on your sleep situation. That can include travel, shift work, or needing to pull late nights for work or study.

“The clearest potential benefits…are for people who have sleeping problems related to Delayed Sleep-Wake Phase Disorder (DSWPD) and jet lag.” Sleep Foundation, 2022.

Black Seed Oil

This is one supplement that’s been found to quell sleep problems. One modest sample of subjects with sleep problems experienced gains in sleep time and efficiency. The group also “had a reduction in anxiety and stress.” Journal of Herbal Medicine, 2020

Today’s the day to be sure improved sleep and quality muscle mass are part of your Plus-40 life!

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