The last post in the Sleep Series focused on several common reasons why cortisol, which should be low in the evening before sleep, can be high and decrease the quality of your sleep. Well, now we know that a sleep deficit, ruminating negative thoughts, a noisy environment, prolonged intense exercise in the evening, caffeine, and chronic undereating can all lead to elevated evening cortisol.
These causes of elevated evening cortisol are not always avoidable, but we still want to sleep well, so what can we do? Continue reading Sleep Series – Part 6: 6 Ways to Relax and Reduce Evening Cortisol
Time for another installment in the Sleep Series! We already learned about high-quality sleep and why days are supposed to be bright, while nights should be dark. The last post introduced the stress hormone cortisol, and its effect on sleep. In an ideal situation, cortisol is naturally high in the morning and tapers off throughout the day to low levels in the evening resulting in high-quality sleep.
In modernity, stressors don’t stop just because it’s night time (though I suppose we don’t worry about nocturnal predators anymore). Evening cortisol levels can be elevated for a number of reasons. I don’t want anyone stressing about stress, so let’s have a good look at some sources of stress to become aware of some common causes of elevated evening cortisol levels.
Continue reading Sleep Series – Part 5: 6 Factors that Increase Evening Cortisol Levels
The last post in this series discussed how light influences your circadian rhythm, and the health effects of blue-light exposure during the day and its negative effects at night (which was discussed in Sleep Series Part 2). This post will look at the effect of the hormone cortisol and how it gives us energy and focus through the day, and then drops off and allows us to relax and sleep properly at night. Let’s take a look at cortisol! Continue reading Sleep Series – Part 4: Cortisol and Sleep