Lifestyle Solutions for a Happy Healthy You!

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3 Strange New Ways to Get a Better Night’s Sleep

3 Strange New Ways to Get a Better Night’s Sleep

 1. Work Near a Window

Need some help convincing your boss that you need a corner office? Bring up this study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. Researchers found that when employees were exposed to natural light during the workday, they slept 46 minutes longer—and more soundly—than employees in windowless offices.

Why should your boss care? A bad night of sleep means short-term effects like memory loss, attention issues, and slower reflexes—something that would surely affect your performance at work. The employees who saw sunlight from their desks were even four times more active during the workday.

The benefits of a windowed office extended past the workday, too, with workers getting more rest and sleeping better and longer on the weekends.

 

2. Keep Your Feet Outside the Covers

To sleep better and fall asleep, keep one or both feet outside the covers, National Sleep Foundation spokesperson Natalie Dautovitch recently told Science of Us.

The reason it helps, she says, is the same reason you’ll hear suggestions to take a warm bath or have a cup of tea before bed. It’s not the warmth that relaxes you into a restful slumber; it’s that your body temperature actually rapidly cools when, for example, you leave the warm tub. There’s a connection between cool body temperature and sleep—researchers have found that our bodies are at our coolest in deep stages of sleep, and our bodies naturally cool when we’re about to go to sleep.

But why stick your foot out? Isn’t it enough that your head is uncovered? Dautovitch explains that feet (and hands) contain blood vessels designed to help dissipate your body heat. Turning up the AC could also help—research shows that people sleep best in rooms that are 60-67 degrees Fahrenheit.

 

3. Get Placebo Sleep

Still not sleeping well? Just trick yourself into thinking you are and you can still get the benefits of a full night of restorative snoozing, new research says.

Psychologists at Colorado College asked participants how well they slept the previous night before randomly assigning them to “above average” or “below average” sleep qualities. They then hooked them up to a machine they claimed (falsely) could measure the previous night’s sleep. After the researchers told participants whether their sleep quality was below or above average, they had them complete a cognitive functioning test.

It turned out that regardless of how well participants reported they had slept the night before, it was their perception of sleep quality (their “above average” or “below average” group) that influenced their performance on the test. Participants who believed they had slept poorly scored 44% on the test, while those who believed they slept well scored 70%.

The downside for the rest of us? Once we know about the placebo effect, it’s not as effective.

So let’s try this—I’ll tell you that you slept fantastically, and you tell me the same thing tomorrow morning. Deal?

By Diana Vilibert

Diana Vilibert is a freelance writer living in Brooklyn. You can be blog-friends with her at dianavilibert.com, or tweet her at @dianavilibert.

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Would feeling fantastic every day make a difference in your life?  Healthy Highway is a Healthy Lifestyle Company offering Lifestyle Solutions for a Happy Healthy You!   We help people who are…

  • Wanting Work Life Balance.
  • Needing Stress Relief.
  • Concerned about their health and the environment.
  • Frustrated battling allergies to gluten, foods, dust, chemicals, pollen.
  • Overwhelmed with choosing the best products for their body, home, and office.
  • Unsatisfied with their relationships with the men and women in their life and are ready to transform them into satisfying, happy partnerships.
  • Standing at a Career Crossroad.
  • Preparing to start a family and want a healthy baby.
  • Seeking solutions for aging, more energy, and a good night’s sleep!

Are any of these an issue or problem for you?  Would it make sense for us to spend several minutes together to discuss your needs and how HealthyHighway can meet them? As a Healthy Lifestyle Coach with an emphasis on allergies and wellness, Leesa teaches her clients to make informed choices and enables them to make needed changes for a Happy Healthy Lifestyle. What you eat, what products you use ~ on your body and in your home and office, how you talk to yourself ~ it all matters!

Contact me today and Start today to live a healthier, happier life!  Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem.  We do virtual coaching worldwide!

I look forward to helping YOU Live a Happy Healthy Life!  Remember, Excellent Health is found along your way, not just at your destination.

Live Well!

Leesa A. Wheeler

Leesa A. Wheeler

Healthy Lifestyle Coach, Artisan, Author of two books…
     Melodies from Within ~ Available Now! 

Member Inernational Association for Health Coaches 

ring ~ 770-393-1284

write ~ info@healthyhighway.org

visit ~ www.healthyighway.org

coach, consult, contact ~ www.healthyhighway.org/contact.html

(Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem!  We do virtual coaching worldwide!)

join our mailing list ~ www.healthyhighway.org

chcws ~ www.chews4health.com/Leesa

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skpe ~ healthyhighway

14 Ways to Keep Cool in Your Home Without Air Conditioning

14 Ways to Keep Cool in Your Home Without Air Conditioning

Here in the South, the weather has definitely taken a turn toward the  sweltering.  There have been some unseasonably warm days already, with highs in  the 90s, and the temptation to flick the switch on that A/C unit to “on” is very strong. Before using  the air conditioner, consider this: home cooling accounts for 5 percent of the energy we consume in the U.S.  each year. That’s about 140 million tons of CO2 emissions annually! Here are  some ways to fight that urge by keeping your house cooler naturally.

1.  Keep the shades drawn during the day. When sunlight  streams through the windows, it creates a miniature greenhouse effect in your  home.

Related: Cool Curtains: Non-Toxic and Eco-Friendly

2.  Reflect the heat. If you do want to open the windows,  consider investing in some reflective window film to help keep the heat outside where  you want it to be.

3.  Let the cool evening air in. If temperatures are on the  chilly side after the sun goes down, crack a few windows open to let a breeze  come through and cool the house.  Just be sure to close them before the  temperature starts to rise again!

4.  Insulate! You want to keep cool air inside, so grab that  caulk gun and seal off anywhere that air might be escaping.  A handy draft dodger can help seal up those tricky leaks at the  bottoms of doors and windows.

5.  Get rid of incandescent lights. Not only do those  suckers use more energy, they generate a lot more heat than CFL or LED light bulbs.

6.  Make sure your ceiling fans are running counter  clockwise. Most modern fans will have a little switch on the side to  reverse their direction.  You want the fan to go clockwise in winter to push  warm air down and reverse it in the summer to circulate cool air.

7.  Drink icy beverages. This one seems like a no-brainer,  but it still bears mentioning.  What better way to beat the heat than to cool  your body from the inside out?

8.  Dress appropriately. Loose-fitting, light clothing goes  a long way toward keeping you cool.  It’s time to bust out those organic cotton shorts and tank tops!

9.  Grab a towel. A towel soaked in cold water is a great  way to cool down.  Apply it to your neck, wrists, and forehead for some relief  during the hottest part of the day.

10. Avoid the stove and oven. Both of these will add  unnecessary heat to the house.  Instead, fire up that outdoor grill or whip up a salad or sandwich.   Your rice cooker, slow cooker, and pressure cooker are other alternatives to  heating up the house with the stove or oven.

11. Try a buckwheat pillow. If the heat is preventing you  from sleeping, switching to a buckwheat pillow can make a big difference, since  buckwheat doesn’t hold on to your body heat like conventional pillows do.

12. Learn from your pets. How does your cat cope with the  hottest part of the day? She snoozes!  If you can squeeze in an afternoon nap,  go for it.

13. Chill out. Turn on your table fan and stick a frozen  bottle of water in front of it to get some cold air circulating.

14. Plant a tree. If you can, plant trees on the side of  your house that gets the most sun.  The extra shade will protect your home from  the sun’s rays.

By Becky Striepe

Becky Striepe is a green blogger and independent crafter with a passion  for vintage fabrics. She runs a crafty business, Glue  and Glitter, where her mission is to use existing materials in products that  help folks reduce their impact without sacrificing style! She specializes in  aprons and custom  lunch bags. Like this article? You can follow  Becky on Twitter or find  her on Facebook!

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by olivander

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