Vegan, Jane Austen student, Minimalist, Reader, Librarian

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

I Have Never Slept Better in My Life…

since becoming vegan! I can’t believe it. When I lived in Detroit (2001-2004), I was so unhappy there I had insomnia almost every night for almost a year. It was terrible as I’m sure many people know who have had it! So, being a librarian, I did research, reading every book & article I could find, as well as watching DVDs, listening to meditation CDs, you name it. One of the best books I found was Deepak Chopra’s Restful Sleep.

I refused to take a drug or go to the doctor for it but I did try melatonin and valerian, which worked sporadically. What finally helped was developing what experts call “sleep habits.” I tried to establish a routine that would trigger my body that it was time for sleep. This included going to bed at the same time (and then getting up at the same time) every day. For me this turned out to be in bed as close as possible to 10pm and up around 6am (incidentally, this is what Deepak Chopra suggested in his circadian rhythm charts in his book), reading quietly or listening to soft music before bed (instead of using the computer or watching television, which are considered too stimulating to the brain), not eating anything heavy before bedtime (if the body is digesting, it’s not concentrating on relaxing for sleep), and not consuming caffeine after 2pm. Of course, after I moved out of Detroit my sleeping improved even more, but I would still awaken during the night & longed to find that sleep I used to enjoy as a child when I would sleep through the night.

Since becoming vegan, I have found it. Now the only time I wake up in the middle of the night is if my cat jumps on my bed, which luckily isn’t too often. I cannot believe that changing what I eat has improved my sleep, but it has and I’m very grateful!

For lunch yesterday (and leftovers tonight!), I just made a simple stir-fry with that same garlic sauce recipe I blogged about on January 23rd, using baby spinach, chopped zucchini, chopped broccoli florets, carrots, & onions served over brown rice with a side salad of lettuce, onions, Spanish olives, & avocado with lemon & olive oil as dressing.

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