Many seek to ‘catch up’ on sleep over the weekend, with erratic schedules encouraging us to rise at different times. But this can wreak havoc on our internal body clocks and disrupt our mood, health and productivity.
When it comes to sleep, regularity is just as important as quantity. Though calorie intake and exercise plans can fluctuate throughout the week to overall benefit, shifting between over and under-sleeping can be worse than sleeping consistently at a deficit.
Modern life is fraught with obstructions to our natural environment, upsetting our circadian rhythms. We throw ourselves between time zones and expose ourselves to blue-light from screens. Although for nightshift-workers, some disruption will be inevitable, developing the best sleep-hygiene possible will help promote health and wellbeing.
Tip: Give yourself the best chance by picking a wake-up time and sticking to it – yes, even on weekends! Doing so will train your body to maintain regular periods of restfulness and alertness, promising better-quality sleep at night and higher levels of energy during the day.
Can Plants Help You Sleep Better?
Plants have their own cellular internal clocks: when specimens are deprived of light and other queues pertaining to the natural environment, they continue to behave according to the rhythms of the day.
If plants fluctuate according to circadian rhythms, and our own internal clocks are influenced by environment, can having plants in the bedroom help promote better sleep patterns?
Some research supports this hypothesis. A study published in the Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry found that indoor plants improved the quality of sleep and cognition in Alzheimer’s patients, whilst reducing agitation.
This may be related to the shared circadian nature of plants and humans, the calming effect that plants have, or another unknown property. But, if you want a good night’s sleep, testing the theory yourself couldn’t hurt!
Plants that Do Well in the Bedroom
Our bedrooms tend to be dimly lit, so it's a good idea to choose a plant that is more tolerant of shade. The following plants are also noted for their air-purifying qualities which should also aid healthy sleep and help to reduce snoring!
We recommend going for a Calathea. These plants are adapted to the densely populated forests of South America, where overhanging canopies block out much of the natural light.
Another good option is a Mother-in-Law’s Tongue, a particularly hardy plant that can withstand lower light, though it does like it.
Also consider the gorgeous Satin Pothos, which can tolerate lower light levels.
Which plants do you keep in your bedroom? Do you think they help you sleep? Let us know @BloomboxClub!