Taking better care of ourselves is a popular New Year's resolution. We vow to eat healthier and exercise more - reasons for all the advertisements on TV for diet plans and gym memberships.
If our bodies could talk - which they really do - we'd also be hearing that now's the time to strategize on ways of getting a better night's sleep, a third link in the chain for improving our physical and mental well being. Maybe one or more of the clever bedroom-focused health tech products we've stumbled upon (while sleep walking or suffering insomnia) can take you there.
A Nuyu. Wake up sweating in the middle of the night, then unable to fall back asleep? Blame human nature - our inbred circadian rhythms - that condition our body clock to sleep more comfortably in a chilly space after the sun goes down or the lights go out.
A programmable or sensor equipped thermostat (Honeywell, Nest, Lux) that automatically sets back the room temp after bedtime can help the cause.
But if you and your bedmate disagree on the ideal temperature, the Nuyu Sleep System ($499 at Bed, Bath & Beyond, http://www.healthometernuyu.com/, Amazon.com and HammecherSchlemmer.com) lets you achieve détente.
Nuyu's torso-sized pad is placed under the bottom sheet, connected by a hose to a small water heating/cooling control unit that sits near or under the bed. The water cycles through the hose and a looping of soft silicon tubes inside the pad - so soft you don't feel the tubing when you lie down on top of it.
While not the first of its breed (look up ChiliPad), Nuyu stands apart by being app controlled and smart enough to shift the bed climate from your chosen go-to-sleep temperature to a more snooze sustaining lower temp after you've nodded out.
My product tester - a young woman going through chemically induced menopause as part of breast cancer treatment - has found Nuyu "a big help." She used to wake up with night sweats so horrible she'd have to leave her spouse and soaked bed "and take refuge on the couch. Now if I wake up, I stay put."
Cautionary note: Our subject has endured some early adopter issues with this new product. The Android version of the companion app (loaded onto a Nexus 7 tablet) connected fine with the Nuyu device. But the iOS version she loaded onto an iPad mini and varied iPhones would not "handshake" with the system; Nuyu's developers - the Health o meter division of Jarden Corp. - says fixes are now occurring with "almost weekly software updates."
Bedtime stories. Staring at electronic screens in bed is a bad thing, say researchers, because the blue light beaming from the screen suppresses our body's production of melatonin, a naturally occurring hormone and sleep inducer.
But what if you need to read yourself to sleep and prefer doing it on an LCD glowing tablet? Amazon Fire tablets such as the Fire HD 8 ($129.99) now offer an end run around the problem - a filtering system called "Blue Shade." Shifts the background color of the screen from white to a more comforting tone - gradations of "red candlelight" and "yellow moonlight."
Clear passages. Breathe easier, snooze better by giving your bedding a good once over with the Dyson V6 Mattress hand-held vac ($249.99). Working its super extraction and spinning brush head powers, this battery-powered allergy fighter pulls out a shocking amount of fine gray grit - the noxious (to our respiratory system) poo left behind by dust mites that feast on dead skin particles. Also great at extracting pet hair and dander from bedding and furniture.
How bad am I. There's OK sleep and then there's deep sleep, the kind that satisfies with better relaxation and issue-resolving dreams. Are you getting enough?
Smart watches and health bands that track exercise and sleep patterns offer a reasonable clue. The new, more feature-laden Misfit Shine 2 ($99) is our best of the bunch, because it's so slim and light you can wear the thing to bed and never notice it's there. Plus, the battery needs replacing only every six months and the multi-functional circle of LEDs display is very cool.
If you really want to document your sleep patterns - and be encouraged to change your evil ways - the Beddit Sleep Monitor is pretty amazing. Positioned under the sheet, Beddit's flat ribbon-like "piezoelectric" sleep sensor is so thin and light you never notice it's there.
And Beddit is comprehensive - working with an app for your iPhone (and optionally an Apple Watch) to chart your resting heart rate, respiration and snoring, as well as sleep cycles.
An intuitive Sleep Score shows up on the Apple Watch and iPhone in the morning. Not doing well? Drill down for more detail and sleep advice. For extra rejuvenation, set the Apple Watch to track a cat nap and show the benefits. $99 at shop-us.beddit.com.