GRACIE DIET: Sleep time with Chamomile tea for a better athletic performance

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Mint, Pear and Chamomile Tea

Mint, Pear and Chamomile Tea

Chamomile is a popular Herb used for centuries in medicine because of its health and nutritional benefits. According to the book 100 Foods To Stay Young – Everyday foods to combat the aging process, from inside and out by Charlotte Watts –  Chamomile Tea is known as a soothing sleep aid. It also supports good digestion and immunity through lowering the stress levels that contribute to premature aging. Contains antioxidants for a youthful heart and skin, plus anti-inflammatory and cholesterol-lowering properties that help to prevent age-related diseases. Between all these health benefits of drinking Chamomile tea, the most important for BJJ athletes and practitioners could be its mild sedative effects.

In addition to physical conditioning and clean eating, sleep plays a major role in athletic performance and competitive results. The quality and amount of sleep provides energy to both the brain and body. If sleep is cut short, the body doesn’t have time to repair and release hormones.

According to Sleepfoundation.org, Sleep deprivation increases levels of stress hormone, cortisol. It has also been seen to decrease production of glycogen and carbohydrates that are stored for energy use during physical activity.  Thus, it means that athletes that don’t get enough sleep have more chances of experiencing fatigue, low energy, poor focus and slower recovery post-workout.

The body needs rest and recovery to perform at the highest level. According to Sportsmedicine.about.com, It is the alternation of adaptation and recovery that takes the athlete to a higher level of fitness. High-level athletes need to realize that the greater the training intensity and effort, the greater the need for planned recovery.

Sportsmedicine.about.com says that chronic lack of sleep can lead to increased levels of cortisol (a stress hormone), decreased activity of human growth hormone (which is active during tissue repair), and decreased glycogen synthesis. Studies link sleep deprivation with decreased aerobic endurance. Glucose and glycogen (stored glucose) are the main sources of energy for athletes. Being able to store glucose in muscle and the liver is particularly important for endurance athletes. Those who are sleep deprived may experience slower storage of glycogen, which prevents storage of the fuel an athlete needs for endurance events beyond 90 minutes. Elevated levels of cortisol may interfere with tissue repair and growth. Over time, this could prevent an athlete from responding to heavy training and lead to overtraining and injury.

Whether you’re a top Jiu Jitsu athlete or simply practices it for self-defense, or just to have fun and exercise, getting the proper amount of sleep is necessary to good fitness and good health. Drinking chamomile tea will help you relieve insomnia, sleep better, reduce anxiety, easy stress and boost your immune system. Busy work routines also leaves us feeling increasingly anxious, worried, and maybe upset so GRACIEMAG recommends you to experience a soothing mug of Chamomile tea at bedtime to find the relaxing benefits of this healing herb.

Try out these two flavorful Chamomile tea recipes and have a perfect nigh of sleep!

 

Mint, Pear and Chamomile Tea

 

Ingredients:

Mint Leaves, extra to serve

10 g Coles Pear Halves in Juice

2 Chamomile Tea Bags

2 cups Water

 

Method:

Blend pears and a little juice from tin, and measure out 1½ cups of pear juice. Place a pot on medium heat and add the mint leaves, teabags, 1½ cups pear juice and water. Bring to a simmer. Take the tea off the heat and allow it to cool. Strain the tea, and pour into a jug. When serving, add extra mint.

 

Chamomile Tea with Orange Peel

 

Ingredients:

1 tsp. dried or 2 tsp. fresh chamomile flowers

1piece fresh organic orange rind (no pith)

1 tsp. good-quality organic honey

 

Method:

Put the chamomile flowers and orange rind in an individual teapot. Pour over boiling water and stir. Let steep for 5 minutes. Pour through a strainer into a serving mug and stir in the honey. Drink hot, or chill in the refrigerator and drink cold with ice.

 

Sources:

100 Foods to Stay Young – Everyday foods to combat the aging process, from inside and out by Charlotte Watts

http://www.theteatalk.com/chamomile-tea-benefits.html

http://sportsmedicine.about.com/cs/conditioning/a/aa062800a.htm

http://sleepfoundation.org/sleep-news/sleep-athletic-performance-and-recovery

http://recipes.coles.com.au/recipes/1189/soothing-mint-pear-chamomile-tea/

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