Managing a PCOS diagnosis is a complex matter. It takes a huge amount of motivation and a large helping of patience. However one important aspect which doesn’t get enough attention is the role that sleep plays in PCOS management.
Our minds and bodies need to be well rested to allow it to repair, recuperate, and ready itself for the upcoming day. Without enough sleep, the human body is at risk for developing insulin resistance and we are more likely to suffer with weight problems. This is because when tired, the body produces the hormone cortisol, meant for a ’fight or flight’ situation, and releases more sugar into the bloodstream. You are also more likely to crave unhealthy foods that are often processed, high in sugar and refined carbohydrates, which in turn lead to weight gain. This is why good quality sleep is so vital for effective PCOS management.
Eight hours of uninterrupted quality sleep helps you to adequately managing stress, strengthening the immune system, improving your mood, as well as balancing hormones that help in controlling your PCOS.
Here are some tips to make sure you sleep better each night:
- Devise a health sleep routine – Try to go to sleep each night and wake up each day at the same time.
- Try to get six to eight hours each night – Prioritising sleep might mean avoiding some late night activities activities like parties or watching television late.
- Make your bed and bedroom conducive to sleep – Invest in a good mattress. Get dark curtains or a black out blind to prevent any external light from entering your room.
- Gadgets like a mobile phone, tablet, computer, and laptop should be kept in another room to recharge. The blue light emitted from these gadgets affects circadian rhythms and are best not used at least two hours before bed time.
- Lavender scented oils can also help in setting the stage for sleep.
- Avoid eating late or drinking alcohol – A full stomach will make it difficult for you to sleep and alcohol is a stimulate that will greatly impact on the quslity of your sleep.
- Avoid caffeine and instead opt for warm milk or Camomile tea as a night time drink.
- ￼Follow a relaxing bedtime ritual – Make the effort to relax and ease your mind into sleep. This can then include reading a book, enjoying a warm bath, writing in a journal or practicing Yoga before bed time.
View your sleep as a form of self care or a healthy habit. Make this a priority and an important way in which you combat your PCOS.
***Starting March 5th 2019 – #PCOS30DayChallenge***
Take back control of your PCOS by taking part in the next live 30 day challenge. Weekly webinars, workbooks and a dedicated secret Facebook support group to help you really make a difference.