We all know how a good night’s sleep is key for us to function well both physically and mentally. If you’re struggling with sleep it can be an all-consuming issue, and so common today given our sedentary lifestyles and reliance on screens. There are a range of options available to help improve your sleep but if you’re looking for a natural solution have you ever considered bone broth? It’s an effective alternative and it's gaining popularity as a natural sleep aid.
Sleep can seem deceptively simple. For most people, it’s just a matter of getting comfortable, closing your eyes and drifting off, but it’s actually quite a complex process. Here we’ll learn why we need sleep, what happens if we don’t get enough and how bone broth could be the key to helping you sort out your sleep issues.
Why Sleep is Key to Overall Health
Sleep is essential to our overall health and well-being. It’s a vital process that allows our bodies to recover and prepare for the next day. It’s when the body repairs muscles and tissues, builds bone and muscle, strengthens the immune system and processes memories and emotions.
Three key functions that sleep supports are:
- Restoration - Sleep allows the body to repair and restore itself. Cells repair damage, tissues grow, and the immune system strengthens during sleep. Deep, non-REM sleep is important for this restorative function.
- Brain function - Sleep is crucial for cognitive function, including memory consolidation and focus. During REM sleep, the brain processes and consolidates memories from the day. Lack of sleep impairs attention, memory, decision making, and problem solving.
- Energy conservation - Sleep conserves energy so that the body can function optimally when awake. Cells regenerate ATP molecules, which provide energy. Muscles relax and grow.
Stages of Sleep
And it’s not just how long we sleep for that’s important, it’s the type of sleep we get.
There are different stages of sleep that we go through each night and everyone’s cycles of sleep can be different.
We start with three stages of Non REM sleep, which takes up about 75-80% of our overall sleep time. During these stages our brain wave activity slows down, our muscles relax and our breathing and heart rate regulates. Non REM sleep is important for physical restoration, energy conservation, tissue growth and repair.
We then go into the final sleep stage known as REM when our brain becomes active again and we may have vivid dreams. Our eyes often move rapidly from side to side (hence the name Rapid Eye Movement) and our heart rate increases. REM sleep is crucial for memory formation, learning, emotional processing and brain development
How Poor Sleep Can Affect Health
Anyone who has been sleep deprived for any length of time understands the impact it can have on your health and wellbeing. Short-term lack of sleep tends to make us irritable and struggle to focus. Sleep deprivation over a longer period of time has been associated with a range of more serious health problems including obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and depression. When we don't get enough sleep, our body produces more stress hormones, which can lead to increased inflammation and a weakened immune system.
Bone Broth For Sleep
More and more people are turning to natural remedies, such as bone broth, to improve their sleep. Bone Broth is more than a warm and comforting bedtime drink, it’s been shown to support the length and quality of your sleep.
It’s naturally rich in Magnesium which is known as the relaxation mineral, and it is required for over 300 enzymatic processes in the body. Magnesium helps to calm the nervous system and relax the muscles, which can make it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep.
Bone Broth is also a great source of glycine, which has been shown to improve sleep quality. Glycine acts as an inhibitory neurotransmitter, which means that it can help to calm the brain and promote relaxation. Studies have found that glycine can improve sleep quality, reduce the time it takes to fall asleep, and reduce daytime sleepiness.
Another way that bone broth can help you sleep better is by supporting your gut health. Your gut and your brain are connected through the gut-brain axis, which means that the health of your gut can have a significant impact on your sleep quality. Bone broth is rich in nutrients that support gut health, including collagen, gelatin, and amino acids.
It’s easy to incorporate bone broth into your day - you can use Freja as flavourful cooking ingredient in dishes but it’s also a delicious and comforting drink sipped on its own, the perfect bedtime drink to prepare you for restful sleep.
Other ways to improve your sleep
Apart from incorporating bone broth into your evening routine, a good overall sleep routine is a great place to start when looking to improve your sleep. We recommend these 5 easy changes to your bedtime routine to support better sleep:
- Stick to a regular sleep schedule: Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends, to regulate your body's internal clock.
- Create a relaxing bedtime routine: Develop a relaxing routine before bed, like having a warm bath, reading a book, or practising relaxation techniques, which your body will learn is the signal that it's time to sleep.
- Make sure your sleep environment is comfortable: Ensure that your bedroom is quiet, dark, and cool, and that your mattress, pillows, and bedding are comfortable and supportive.
- Limit screen time before bed: Avoid using electronic devices, such as phones, tablets, and computers, before bed, as the blue light emitted from these devices can disrupt your natural sleep patterns.
- Avoid stimulants and heavy meals before bedtime: Avoid consuming caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol before bed, as they can interfere with your ability to fall and stay asleep, and avoid heavy meals or snacks close to bedtime, as they can cause discomfort and indigestion. Bone Broth makes an excellent, light and sleep supporting bedtime drink.
So try changing your routine and swapping your evening hot chocolate for a warm mug of Freja bone broth and see how it can help you get the restful and restorative sleep you need to feel your best.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the benefits of drinking bone broth before bed?
Drinking bone broth before bed can provide several benefits. The amino acids found in bone broth, such as glycine, have been shown to have a calming effect on the body, promoting relaxation and reducing anxiety. This can help you fall asleep faster and improve the overall quality of your sleep. Additionally, bone broth is a good source of magnesium, which is essential for regulating sleep and reducing stress.
Is it ok to have bone broth before bed?
Absolutely! A warm cup of bone broth is the perfect pre-bedtime drink as it’s full of glycine and magnesium which have both been shown to promote better sleep.
Can bone broth improve sleep quality?
Yes, bone broth can improve sleep quality. The amino acids found in bone broth, such as glycine, have been shown to have a calming effect on the body, promoting relaxation and reducing anxiety. Bone broth is also a rich source of magnesium, which is essential for regulating sleep and reducing stress.