Do you often feel irritated and sluggish for no reason after having woken up, instead of being refreshed and rested? If so, you may be one of 30% of Americans who have mild insomnia.
We often blame not being able to sleep well at night on work stress, technology use late at night, or a disturbance that prevents us from falling asleep. If you don’t drink enough water or don’t drink water at the correct times throughout the day, it may be the cause of not getting a good night’s rest.
The National Sleep Foundation has found your sleep can be disrupted if you go to bed while you are slightly dehydrated and it can even cause grogginess when you wake up and snoring. Experts have fortunately identified the ideal hydration program that should be followed to ensure you drink enough water through the day to help you sleep well at night. The following guidelines should be followed to maintain the optimum hydration level through the day.
1. Make sure you drink water with each meal
An old myth says that if you drink water with meals, it will dilute the stomach acid and make it more difficult for nutrients to be absorbed by the body. This is false. Drinking water at meals will help your body to digest food as it helps the stomach absorb nutrients and soften food. If you consume water with food, it will also avoid constipation by lubricating the digestive tract. Another advantage of drinking water while eating is that it will prevent overeating as it allows you to take a break from eating, and this will give you time to determine if your stomach wants more food.
2. Wait for 2 to 3 hours before drinking coffee after waking up
For the ideal level of hydration, experts recommend waiting 2 to 3 hours after waking before drinking coffee. Coffee is slightly diuretic, and drinking coffee may force you to urinate more often. Drinking coffee straight after waking up when you are already dehydrated as you’ve gone for about eight hours without liquids, will further dehydrate you. If you exercise in the morning, drink water rather than coffee, after you’ve woken up and while you’re in the gym. Only drink caffeine after you have worked out. The rush of endorphins you get from exercise should be enough to get you wide awake in no time at all.
3. Don’t drink caffeine 6 hours before bedtime
Even if you feel very sleepy in the late afternoon, try to resist grabbing a cup of coffee or any other caffeinated drink to give you energy. Research has shown that if you drink caffeine during the 6 hours before bedtime, it will be more challenging to fall asleep. If the craving for the taste of coffee is too much to handle, instead drink decaffeinated coffee. There are other methods you could use to stay awake, like doing some high-energy squats or taking a fast walk. This will help recharge your batteries.
4. Eat food containing lots of water
If you don’t like drinking water or don’t manage to do so enough every day and your daily intake of fluids is mainly fruit juices and caffeinated beverages, eating foods that contain lots of water is crucial to maintain the correct hydration level. Many fruits and veggies have a high water content, including cantaloupe, spinach, oranges, celery, cucumbers, strawberries, and watermelon. All these foods also have high nutrition levels and will give you a good dose of daily vitamins while keeping your hydration levels up. Although consuming these foods will help those that don’t like water to increase their water intake, the healthiest and most effective way to keep hydrated is still drinking water.
5. Drink some water before bedtime
You might believe that drinking water before going to sleep will result in you having to urinate through the night, which means it’s better avoided. Although guzzling a large volume of water before going to bed is not a good idea, drinking a small quantity will not harm you. Hydrating before hitting the sack will help you not waking up because of dehydration causing leg cramps, or being thirsty through the night.
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