In 2014 the Center for Disease Control (CDC) labeled sleep deprivation a public health epidemic with serious consequences including depression, ADHD, cardiovascular disease, obesity, Type 2 Diabetes, and hormone imbalance. Sleep deprivation has also been linked to inflammation and is a common culprit for symptoms like bloating, fatigue, headaches and foggy thinking.
This alarming data comes at a time when fewer of us than ever are getting the daily recommended amount of sleep which is 7 to 9 hours nightly for adults and 8 to 10 hours nightly for teens. The search for sleep has become a cultural obsession, fueling the rise of an entire industry. But, let’s face it – with glaring laptop screens and demanding work and school schedules, sleepless nights aren’t going away anytime soon.
Sleep is a priority for people trying to get their health in check. One easy solution for better sleep at home is houseplants. Certain types of plants possess sleep-inducing, air-purifying properties, and incorporating them throughout your living space can improve your sleep, your health, and your decor!
Jasmine: Studies have shown that jasmine works like a sedative to ease anxiety and help people fall asleep faster and experience deeper, more restful sleep.
Lavender: According to the National Sleep Foundation, lavender can lower your blood pressure, heart rate, and cortisol (stress hormone) levels to help induce sleep. Use as a potted plant or try rubbing the essential oil into sheets.
Aloe Vera: This succulent takes in harmful toxins in your home and is easy to care for.
English Ivy: Especially effective for anyone with asthma or allergies. It can reduce air mold spores by up to 94% in 12 hours.
Boston Ferns: Said to be one of the best air purifying houseplants, these ferns remove formaldehyde from the air and act as a natural humidifier.
Gerbera Daisy: Found by NASA to remove cancer-causing benzene found in cigarette smoke, detergents, pesticides & other synthetic materials.
Snake Plant: Highly recommended for bedrooms because of its unique ability to absorb significant amounts of carbon dioxide at night, replacing it with oxygen.
Related Reading and References:
Your Guide to Healthy Sleep (PDF) – Comprehensive guide to sleep and why it matters. (www.nih.gov)
How Much Sleep Is Enough for My Child? (www.kidshealth.org)
How Much Sleep Do You Need? (www.berkeleywellness.com)