A TikTok user has gone viral for her rather ~ unusual ~ sleep hack, which involves a bag of frozen peas. Yep, you read that right. In the video, Frankie Simmons explains how her "life changing" tip has put an end to the many years she spent struggling with her sleeping pattern. And her clip has already racked up over 3.2 million views, which makes sense, considering one in five of us have difficulty falling asleep every night (according to this recent survey).
So, how does this frozen pea hack actually work? As Frankie explains in her TikTok, it's all to do with the vagus nerve (the most complex of our cranial nerves, which sends information from the brain to elsewhere in the body). "A couple of years ago it was a very regular occurrence for me to wake up at 4am with anxiety all the time. And I'd have to pull myself up out of bed and do all this breath work and energy work and tea drinking, and spend forever trying to calm myself down to go back to sleep," she recalled, "[But] all that changed the day that I found out about icing your vagus nerve."
The vagus nerve, Frankie points out, "is one of the longest nerves in your body and it controls a lot of your parasympathetic nervous system – AKA the nervous system in control of calming you down." Because of that, "whenever we're talking about nervous system regulation, it's kind of the final boss because if [the vagus nerve] ain't happy, nobody's happy," she stresses.
As for how the vagus nerve relates to sending you off to sleep quicker, Frankie reveals it's pretty straightforward when you think about it. "Applying cold to our vagus nerve helps to release inflammation, it stimulates [the vagus nerve] and helps it do its job better," she explains, "You can do this by taking ice-cold showers. You can do this by taking dips in ice-cold lakes. But, if you want to save yourself the discomfort, just put an ice pack on the centre of your chest. Wrap it in a towel, put it right there, lie down for at least 15 minutes and it is [chef's kiss] a game-changer."
If you don't happen to have an ice pack lying around in your freezer, or like us, never bother to fill up your ice tray, Frankie says a bag of frozen peas will do the trick just as well. "When I found [out about] this... I didn't even have an ice pack at the time, I would just go to the freezer, get a pack of peas, put it between my boobs and I'd be back out in no time. It changed my life. I want everybody to know about this magic."
BRB, off to stock up on frozen peas...
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