Having a restful night’s sleep is one of the most important aspects of living a healthy life—but of course, life tends to get in the way. Everyday stresses and choices can leave us restless. Today, there are medications, natural remedies, noise generators, high-tech mattresses, and just about anything else you can imagine to help people get better sleep. Unfortunately, even with all of these options, many people still struggle with getting consistently restful, restorative sleep.
What if the key to more restful sleep was involved in the way we eat our food? Typically, when we consider our diet, we don’t think about the effects it has on our sleeping habits. The Circadian Rhythm Diet is built on the idea that the timing of our meals is just as important as their nutritional content. As with any diet that includes fasting, consult your doctor before starting.
What Exactly is the Circadian Rhythm?
Your Circadian Rhythm is your body’s natural internal clock. It tells you when to wake up and when to go to sleep. Keeping a relatively consistent schedule can help strengthen your natural rhythms and release more sleep-inducing chemicals at bedtime. Ever experienced jet lag? That happens because the time of day in a new place doesn’t line up with your internal clock. If you keep your body from maintaining a consistent rhythm, you’re basically introducing your body to artificial jet lag. No wonder you’re tired!
What is the Circadian Rhythm Diet?
The Circadian Diet is a nutrition and wellness plan that follows time-restricted eating schedules in order to sync your eating habits with the body’s natural internal clock. The diet suggests eating in a 12-hour window during daylight hours, followed by another 12 hours of fasting when it’s dark. Start with a healthy, big breakfast and eat progressively lighter meals throughout the day. Dinner should be the lightest meal of the day and should be eaten before sunset. Most of us are used to dinner as our heaviest meal, so this can be a difficult transition. After dark, try to only drink water.
What are the Benefits of the Circadian Rhythm Diet?
- The first and most obvious benefit: better and more restful sleep.
- Less pain and swelling from inflammation.
- Less bloating and puffiness in the morning, thanks to less water retention.
- Bright and glowing skin.
- Healthy weight loss as a side effect of this method, although it’s not the main goal.
- Moderated sugar cravings.
- Improved energy levels.
Tips to get you through Fasting:
- Try to eat dinner while the sun is still up.
- In the morning, when it is time to break your fast, have warm lemon water first before you eat breakfast.
- Listen to your body and adjust fasting times accordingly, but try to keep it at a minimum of 12 hours.
Check out this Sample Meal Plan from Thrive Natural Medicine