The art of waking up rested
Some people wake up ready to tackle the day, while others may need more time or a cup of coffee to start the day. Whichever camp you fall into, there is an art and a science to waking up refreshed in the morning. Unfortunately, many people fall short when it comes to getting enough sleep. But we’re here to help you live well and work well – February 2023!
So, what’s the trick to waking up refreshed? First of all, getting enough sleep each night is an important first step. Sleep experts recommend that adults sleep at least seven to nine hours a night. Additionally, consider these tips to improve the quality of your shuteye and improve your chances of waking up energized:
- Keep a consistent sleep schedule and routine. Do your best to have the same wake-up and bedtime times, whether it̵7;s a weekday or weekend.
- Set an alarm – and make it a happy tone. Wake up when your first alarm goes off and resist hitting the snooze button. While you’re at it, choose a happy or upbeat ringtone on your cell phone to get you in a good mood.
- Practice gratitude. Grateful thinking and mood can help you sleep better and longer, so focus on having a positive outlook. Consider keeping a gratitude journal to reflect on daily entries about what you are grateful for. Alternatively, you can focus on positive thoughts and what you feel like doing or achieving the following day. An attitude of gratitude can help keep pessimism or worrying thoughts at bay.
- Practice good sleep hygiene. Sleep experts recommend avoiding exercise or eating spicy food close to bedtime and sleeping in a cool, dark room.
It takes more than one night to see a change in your sleeping habits, so stick with it and try it for at least a week. Talk to your doctor if you continue to be concerned about your sleep quality.
The importance of anxiety screening
The US Preventive Services Task Force (Task Force) now recommends that adults under the age of 65 be regularly screened for anxiety. It’s meant to help primary care doctors identify early signs of anxiety, which can go undetected for years. It is the first time that the authority recommends anxiety screening in primary care for adults without symptoms.
The Task Force noted that the lifetime prevalence of anxiety disorders in US adults is 40.4% for women and 26.4% for men. The recommendation was prioritized due to the public health impact of anxiety and the country’s increased focus on mental health in recent years. The guidance ends by recommending anxiety screening for people 65 and older because many common symptoms of aging — such as trouble sleeping, pain and fatigue — can also be symptoms of anxiety.
If you are already showing signs or symptoms of anxiety, contact your doctor to be assessed and linked to care. Anxiety screening tools, including scales and questionnaires, have been developed and are available in primary care.
Boost your immunity with nutrition
This winter, cases of cold, flu, RSV and covid-19 are common. Because a healthy diet can help boost your immune system, it’s important now more than ever to take care of your body so it can fight off infectious diseases. Consider the following immune-boosting diet tips:
- Focus on putting nutritious food into your body. Your body absorbs nutrients from whole fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains and proteins more efficiently than processed foods or supplements.
- Limit inflammatory foods such as those with refined carbohydrates, trans fats, high fructose corn syrup, refined oils and high sodium. Think of it as limiting or avoiding processed and fast food whenever possible.
- Choose fruit, vegetables (especially leafy greens), nuts, fatty fish and olive oil. Focus on fueling your body with healthy foods that include dietary fiber, nutrients or probiotics.
- Stay hydrated and drink enough water to keep your body functioning at its best.
Check out last month’s edition of Live Well Work Well – January 2023.
All of us here at CoverLink Wishing you continued health and safety this year!