Can't Sleep? Warm Your Feet
January 02, 2008
Warm feet -- a sign of healthy blood flow -- may help induce restful sleep. So warming up cold feet, such as with an old-fashioned hot water bottle, could help those who have trouble falling asleep.
Thermoregulation -- the body's heat distribution system -- is strongly linked to sleep cycles. Even lying down increases sleepiness by redistributing heat in the body from the core to the periphery.
Blood flow is a prime method of distributing heat evenly throughout the body. Poor blood flow can cause a reduction in the temperature of the extremities, and the researchers theorized that cold hands and feet might therefore be associated with sleeplessness as well. They authors found that increases in blood flow of in the hands and feet, rather than diet, light or melatonin administration, was the best predictor of the body's readiness for sleep.
Based on these findings, the authors speculate that any act that increases temperature in the extremities -- such as placing a hot water bottle at the feet, or covering the feet with socks, could help induce sleep more quickly.
COMMENT: Don’t you just love these simple easy remedies? I will have to add wearing a few pairs of socks to bed to my insomnia recommendations.