It's no secret that sleep is important, however, most of the population are suffering from sleep deprivation and there are many harmful side effects including increased risk of heart disease, stroke, cancers, poor performance, fatigue, memory loss and many more.
Health benefits of good sleep include reduced stress, lower blood pressure, strengthening the immune system, regulating hormones, help control appetite, improved mood, improved intelligence, help you fight pain, reduce the risk of diseases and improves overall health.
You should aim for at least 8 hours of high quality sleep each night for optimal performance the next day. So we know how much, we need but how do we make sure that it is high quality?
This depends on many factors of things to do and not to do. Leave it at least 2 hours after eating before you go to bed, otherwise, it can affect your digestion and cause some problems here. Avoid all types of caffeine for 6 hours before you go down for the night. Ensure daily outdoor exercise because not only is it good for you, will help you doze off, it will also reduce stress levels.
The best thing to do before you sleep is to talk to your partner or read a book using natural candlelight. We use light to see, and our eyes are extremely talented at adjusting to low and bright light conditions. Whilst it is important, not all light is created equally, nothing really is.
So what light is the best for us? Well, as a general rule, artificial light in the evening is negatively correlated with affecting our levels of melatonin that can lead to sleep deprivation.
This in mind, with artificial lights from our technologies such as lamps, phones, tv etc, we discover that the harm comes from blue light, but that's not to say that it's bad? After all the sun has blue light, it is all around us, but it should be avoided before bed as it mimics the sun at messes with our internal body clock.
Candlelight does not emit as much blue light as artificial does, so it will not negatively affect levels of melatonin that leads to poor sleep quality/deprivation. Warning: you should ALWAYS make sure that the candle flame is extinguished before you sleep, and NEVER leave candles unattended.