Better night's sleep

April 16, 2024
Bessere Nachtruhe
Published on  Updated on  

Better night's sleep: expert tips for optimal sleep  


Sleep is an essential part of human health and well-being. It plays a crucial role in physical recovery, cognitive function and emotional balance. However, in our modern, fast-paced society, sleep is often neglected, which can lead to a number of health problems. 


The Science of Sleep  

  • REM and NREM 

Sleep is a complex biological process divided into different phases: REM (Rapid Eye Movement) and NREM (Non-REM). During NREM sleep, the body undergoes a number of regenerative processes, including repairing cells and strengthening the immune system. REM sleep is important for memory consolidation and emotional processing. 

  • Circadian rhythm 

The circadian rhythm is the body's genetically fixed internal clock that controls the sleep-wake cycle. For example, it controls body temperature and blood pressure and allows physiological and biochemical processes to run in cycles (TCM organ clock). Light exposure and melatonin levels are important factors that influence circadian rhythms. A disruption in this rhythm can lead to sleep disorders. 


Health effects of lack of sleep  

  • Cognitive impairments 

Lack of sleep can affect cognitive performance and memory. This can have a negative impact on work performance and overall quality of life. 

  • Cardiovascular diseases 

Long-term lack of sleep is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. This includes an increased risk of high blood pressure, heart attack and stroke. 

  • Weight gain and metabolism 

Lack of sleep can lead to an increase in appetite and therefore weight gain. In addition, it can affect metabolism and increase the risk of type 2 diabetes. 

  • Mental health 

Poor sleep can also affect mental health, including increased stress and anxiety. In severe cases, this can lead to depression. 


Dietary supplements for better sleep  

Dietary supplements (NEMs) can play an important role in improving sleep quality. Different substances have different mechanisms of action that can promote sleep. Here are some of the most commonly used NEMs and their biological effects: 


Melatonin is a hormone that regulates the sleep-wake cycle. It is often used as NEM to treat sleep problems. It is particularly effective in treating jet lag or sleep problems caused by shift work. Melatonin can also help adjust circadian rhythms, especially when disrupted by travel or irregular work hours. 



Magnesium plays a crucial role in muscle relaxation and therefore promotes sleep. It is also important for regulating circadian rhythms. A lack of magnesium can lead to sleep problems, and supplementation can help improve sleep quality. 



Lavender is known for its calming properties. It is often used in the form of essential oils or as NEM. Studies have shown that lavender can improve sleep quality, especially in those with mild sleep disorders. Lavender can also reduce stress and anxiety, which are often the cause of sleep problems. 


Melissa and passionflower 

These herbs are known for their calming properties and can be taken as a tea or supplement to promote sleep. Lemon balm has a calming effect on the nervous system and can help alleviate problems falling asleep. Passionflower has similar effects and is often used in combination with other calming herbs. 


Expert advice for optimal sleep: 

  • Regular sleep-wake cycle : Try to go to bed and get up at the same time every day. This helps stabilize circadian rhythms. 
  • Sleep environment : A dark, cool and quiet room promotes sleep. Avoid using electronic devices before bed as blue light can lower melatonin levels. 
  • Diet : Avoid caffeinated drinks and heavy meals before bed. These can disrupt sleep and lead to digestive problems. 
  • Exercise : Regular physical activity can improve sleep quality. However, try to avoid intense workouts at least three hours before bed. 
  • Avoid blue light : Exposure to blue light, such as that found in smartphones and computers, can inhibit melatonin production and therefore disrupt sleep. It is recommended to avoid electronic devices at least an hour before bedtime. 
  • Coffee restriction : Caffeine can significantly affect sleep. It is advisable not to drink coffee after the afternoon so as not to affect the quality of your sleep. 


In summary, sleep is an essential part of our health and well-being. The negative effects of lack of sleep can be far-reaching, from cognitive impairment to serious health risks. By following expert advice and possibly supplementing with nutritional supplements, you can optimize your sleep and thus improve your quality of life. 



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