Stressed and drained from work or relationship problems? While hiding under your sheets and falling into a deep, dreamless sleep sounds like a good plan, you might realise that you’ll have problems falling asleep. The good news is, this simple trick might help: Drink sugarcane juice before going to bed.
In a study conducted by the University of Tsukuba in Japan, researchers were testing the effect that octacosanol had on sleep regulation in mildly stressed mice. When they orally fed the mice octacosanol, they found that the mice slept better. This was true even though their sleep was previously disturbed due to stress. Researchers suggest that this showed that octacosanol is an active compound that may be useful in therapy of insomnia caused by stress.
But just what is octacosanol and where do you find it? Thankfully, octacosanol isn’t difficult to track down. It is actually a naturally-occurring chemical that is in abundance in certain foods like sugarcane, rice bran and wheat germ oil. It is considered safe for humans to use in therapy since it is a food-based compound and believed to show no side effects.
Currently, there are already octacosanol supplements available on the market for boosting strength and lowering cholesterol levels. Based on this study, an easier alternative is to just drink a cup of sugarcane juice with your dinner!
Other tips that can help you sleep better at night:
- Stick to a consistent bedtime and wake-up time
- Avoid screen time (no phones, TVs, laptops etc.) an hour before bed
- Avoid alcohol and caffeine close to bedtime
- Exercise regularly, but try to do so at least three hours before bedtime
- Take a warm shower to relax yourself before bed
Text: Dawn Chen / Shape / September 2017
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