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    September 1, 2022

    September 2022 Corporate Newsletter


    Contributed by Mandy Enright, MS, RDN, RYT


    September is the perfect time to re-evaluate habits and reset both professional and personal goals. As summer winds down and we transition to the fall routine, it’s a great time to assess our self-care habits. While nutrition and exercise habits may take top priority, sleep is one area that’s often neglected. Establishing good habits around sleep and bedtime can significantly improve not only the quality of your sleep, but also your energy and overall health at the same time. It’s true – you can get healthier in your sleep! 


    Why You Need Sleep 

    We spend almost one-third of our lifetime sleeping, which means it must be important if we need to do it daily. Poor sleep has been linked to chronic disease, negative mental health, and can even shorten our lifespan. Ideally, you should aim for 7-9 hours of quality sleep per night and be consistent with sleep habits. That means going to bed and waking up around the same times daily – including weekends. 

    Unplug to Recharge

    Constant stimulation causes stress on the body, leading to inflammation, digestive issues, and anxiety. It makes getting a good night’s sleep a whole lot harder. If you find that you’re wired and tired all at the same time when you’re going to bed, here are some ways to unwind at the end of the day:  

    • Set boundaries – and stick to them! Set a cut-off on your day when you are no longer available by text, email, or phone. Let others know that you will get back to them after a certain time the next day. When you respect your own time, others will too.  
    •  Have an Electronics Curfew: Establish a time to stop using electronic devices for the remainder of the night. Emails and social media can cause added stress and anxiety – not what you want before bedtime.  
    •  Limit Screen Time: Blue lights from screens on devices cause brain stimulation, making it harder to fall asleep. Stop using devices at least an hour before bedtime. Don’t keep within reach of your bed, turn off notifications, and silence your phone to reduce temptation to check in the middle of the night. 

    Foods to Put You in a Sleepy Mood

    Certain foods help produce and release hormones that make us feel sleepy: 

    • Tryptophan = an amino acid that helps produce sleeps hormones serotonin and melatonin 
    • Serotonin = hormone that causes sleepiness 
    • Melatonin = hormone that promotes deep, restful sleep 

    Protein-rich foods are high in tryptophan, while carbs are needed to unlock tryptophan. Enjoying these foods at dinner and before bedtime can help bring on that sleepy feeling: 

    • Tryptophan-rich foods: dairy, poultry, seafood, beans, legumes, nuts, and seeds 
    • Natural sources of Melatonin: nuts, leafy greens, tart cherry juice 
    • Serotonin-Boosters: kiwi, pineapple, fatty fish 
    • Starchy Carbs: cereal, rice, oatmeal 
    • Caffeine-Free Drinks including chamomile tea or warm milk


    Foods to Avoid Before Bedtime

    Avoid these foods late in the day that can cause discomfort or alertness and keep you awake: 

    • Caffeine
    • Sugary foods  
    • High-sodium foods 
    • Spicy foods 
    • Large, high-fat meals

    Restful & Relaxing Activities

    Find one or a few activities that can take you away from daily obligations and help get the mind and body relaxed and ready for a good night’s sleep: 

    • Meditation and breathing exercises (check out apps like Calm or Headspace) 
    • Yoga or light stretching 
    • Listen to calming music 
    • Take a warm shower or bath 
    • Aromatherapy 
    • Journaling  
    • Read a book or magazine  

    And a few DON’Ts to consider avoiding late in the day or right before bed: 

    • Bring your laptop, cell phone, or tablet to bed with you. 
    • Be available and responsive 24 hours to people outside your home or family. 
    • Check email or social media right before bed. 
    • Procrastinate to do your most stressful or intense work at the end of the day. 
    • Read books, magazines, or articles on electronic devices before bed. 
    • Do strenuous or vigorous workouts late in the day or right before bed.  
    • Be dehydrated – drink water throughout the day. 
    • Go to bed angry or upset – have an outlet like journaling or talking to someone. 



    Smoothies aren’t just for breakfast! Make this delicious smoothie before bed to load up on sleep-inducing nutrients. Makes 1 serving.


    • 1 cup low-fat or nonfat milk (or nondairy alternative) 
    • ¾ cup frozen cherries (or mixed berry blend with cherries)  
    • ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt 
    • 2 tablespoons rolled oats 
    • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseeds 
    • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract 
    • ¼ cup tart cherry juice 


    Place all ingredients listed in order into a blender and combine to desired consistency. Enjoy! 



    Mandy Enright MS, RDN, RYT, is a Registered Dietitian, Yoga Instructor, and Corporate Wellness Expert, as well as main content contributor for Wellness Concepts. Mandy is a featured presenter, both virtually and onsite near her home in Neptune, NJ.



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    September 2022 Corporate Newsletter

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