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BOOKREVIEW:

SLEEPSMARTERSHAWNSTEVENSON

Thisreviewisinterestingforeveryone,sincesleepisanaturalprocessforallofus.Howeverin
modernsocietytheimportanceofqualitativesleepisoftenunderestimatedandevennot
respected.Asresearchshows,sleepisoneofthemostimportantaspectswhenitcomestogood
healthandsuccessinlife.Letsdigintosomestrategiesthatwillmakeyouhaveabettersleepand
asaresultamoresuccessfullife.

Whatareethebenefitsofhighqu ualitysleep??BasicallyaasStevenson narguesyoourimmunesystem


willgetsstrengthened d,yourmeta
abolismwillbbeboosted,yourhormoneswillbebbalanced,you ur
energyleevelwillriseandyourbrrainwillfuncctionmoreefffectively.Th
hisaltogetheerwillmakeyyou
performbetteronw whatevertaskkyoureworrkingonduringtheday.

Inmorescientificterrms,sleepm
makessuretthewasteou urbraincellssproduceduuringdailyacctivitiesis
removed d.Thereforesleepliterallymakesrooomfornewggrowthandd developmentt.Removingand
recyclinggdeadbraincells,tossinggouttoxins andshuttlingoutwasteisacriticalbbrainfunctionand
thisispo
ossiblethrou
ughtherestoorativepoweerofsleep.

Alotofp
peoplethinkkthatinorddertobesucccessfultheyhavetoggiveupsleeppandworkh
harder.
AndYES,,itistruethatlesssleep willallowusstodomore
ethings.Butwhatabout thequalityaand
effectiveenessofourwork?Studiesshowedtthatlessresttedpeoplenotonlyperfoormworse,ttheyalso
takelonggertoperforrmtasks.Itssnotaquesttionofquanttity,butquallity.

Inthefu
uture,trytosseesleepassomethingvvaluable,sommethinglikea aspecialtreeatthatwillbenefit
you.Chaangeyourpeerception.Do ontseesleeppasanobstaacle,butasa
agift.

Research hprovedthaatgettingmo oresunlightdduringthedaywillmakeeyousleepbbetteratnigh


ht.Why
isthat?B
Becauseofoourcircadianntimingsysteemorcircad dianclock.Th
hisbiologica lclockwhicchis
regulateedbynerveccellsinthehyypothalamusstellsourb
bodieswhentowakeup andwhento ogoto
sleepandhelpsusco ontrolourdigestion,imm munesystem m,bloodpresssure,appetiite,mentale
energy
andotheerthings.Inttheimagebe elow,youcaanseehowth hecircadianrhythmmannifestsitselfin
humanb beings.Theffirstmorningglight(arounnd6am)willsendsignalsstothehypoothalamusthhatits
timetowakeupan ndbecomea alert.Moreoover,thisligh
htexposurewwillcauseyo urbodytop
produce
daylightthormonesandneurotrransmittersssuchascortissolandserottonin.


Asopposedtowhatmostpeople esay,cortisoolisntactuallybadorwrong.Onnthecontrary,itis
naturallyygeneratedinthemorniingandmakeesyouwanttowakeupandbeactivve.Itgivesyo ou
energy.SSerotonintooisproduce edinthemorrningthrou posureandhelpsbringingabout
ughlightexp
feelingsofhappinesssandwellbe eing.Besidessthat,serotooninalsoplaysacrucialrroleinregula
ating
yourboddysbiologicaalclock.Asa
aresult,notggettingenou ughnaturalliightcanmakkeyourserottonin
productiionandthereforeyourin nternalclockksuffer.

Ontheo othersideofthespectrum mofhormonnesismelato onin.Theboddywillstartttonaturallyproduce


thishormmoneintheeveningasittgetsdark(aaround9pm m)andwillmakeyoureaddyforsleep.It
thereforrehasaninveerserelation nshipwithcoortisolandse
erotonin.Whhentheseareeup,melato oninis
down.Th hesecretionofthishormmonetooishheavilyimpactedbyyourrexposuretoonaturaldayylight.If
youdontgetenoughdaylight,th hecycleofm
melatoninpro oductionma aygetconfussed.Gettingbetter,
morequ ualitativesleeepisaboute
encouraging theproductionoftherigghthormoneeattherightttime.
Thekeytakeawayh hereistoget naturallighttoverdayan
ndmakeitasdarkasposssibleduringgthe
night.

Stevenso
onalsomakeesthefollow
wingrecomm
mendations:

Getdirrectsunlightoutdoorsforaboutanh ourandahaalfeachday(preferablybbetween6amand
8:30ambecauseth osunlight).TThissunlightwill
hisiswhenyyourbodycloockismostrresponsiveto
boostyoournaturalcortisollevelssandfullywaakeupyoursystem.

Ifyourreworkinganofficejob,trytotakeyyourbreakso
outside(101
15mins).

oakingupsunlightbehindawindow canbenefityyourcircadia
Evenso antimingsysstem,sincethelight
dupbyyouropticalreceptorsandseenttoyourbrain.Soifyoucanworkiinfrontofabig
ispicked
window,,itshouldalreadyhelpalot.Justbe carefulforU
UVArays,whichcanpeneetratethrouggh
windowssandcaninccreasetherisskofskincannceratthelo
ongrun.(UV
VBisneeded forvitaminDand
youcanonlygetitoutdoors)

Trytoaavoidsunglassesifpossib
ble,sincetheeyblockouttthenaturalsunlightgetttingsoaked
dupby
youroptticalreceptors.

Thebigpproblemwithscreensofelectronicd evicesisthaattheydispla
ayanartificiaalbluelightw
which
triggerstthebodytoproducemoredaytimehhormonessu uchascortiso
ol.Thereforee,yourbodysnatural
pmaygetdissoriented.Reesearchevenshowsthattcheckingthhescreenofyourlap
preparattionforsleep
top,smaartphoneorttelevisionfor2hoursbefforebedtime ecansuppreessthenaturralproductio onof
melatonin,thehorm monethatma akesusreadyyforagoodnightsleep.Rememberttheinverse
relationsshipbetween ncortisolandmelatonin inthepreviouschapter..Whencorti solisup,me elatonin
isdown.

Butthereisathirdchemicalinplay:dopamin ine.Ourbrainsarenatura allywiredtooconstantlysseekout


momenttsofpleasuree.However,itisimportaanttonoteth hatdopamin neisnotabo utpleasure,but
aboutseeekingpleasu ure.Itsabou
utthehuntfoorthenextsstimulus.Theepleasureitsselfisjustan
nend
resultth
hatwereceivvefromtheo opioidsystem m.Andthein nternet,wheetheritsFaccebook,Snap pchator
Googlepprovidesthesepleasure g.Theseopiooidorpleasurehits
ehitsthebrrainisconstaantlyseeking
arefollowedbymoredopamine,,becauseweewanttosee ewhatsnexxt.Howisdoopaminerelatedto
sleep?NNotonlydoessitmakeusaddictedtottechnologicaalgear,thereleaseofdoopaminealsoomakes
usmorealertandawwake.Itincre efulnessandasaresulttleadstop
easesthefeeelingofwake poor
sleep.Sttevensonreccommendsustobevery awareofthiisprocess.Awarenessistthekeytoch hanging
behaviou urandsnapyourselfoutofthisdopaamineloop.

Afewmorerecomm
mendationsb
byStevensonntogetabetttersleep:

Turnofffallscreenssatleast90m
minutesbefoorebedtimeinordertoa
allowmelatooninandcorttisol
levelsto
onormalize.

Switchtootheracttivitiesbefore ebedtime:rreadabook,haveaniceconversationnwithfamilyyor
friends,listentomussic,etc.Tryttofindanennjoyablealterrnative.

Turnofffthecuesto
opreventthe
edopamine looptounfo old.Thesecu
uescanbevissualoraudittory.For
examplee:switchoffaautomaticnootificationsoonyourphon
nebeforebeedtime.

Ifyouw
wanttogoalittleextrem
mer:buyglas sesthatblocckoutblueliightandgiveeeverythingamore
soft,orangetint.Youualsohavessomeapplicaationssuchasf.luxthata
automaticallyyeliminatethe
problem maticblueligh
htonyourApplecomputter.

Caffeineisfoundincchocolate,co
offee,teaanndotherenergydrinkslikkeRedBull,CCocaCola,ettc.In
short:th
hingsthatpeoplelove.Caaffeinehoweeverisapow werfulnervou ussystemsttimulantanddshould
beavoiddedbeforebeedtime.Thequestionis: howlongbe eforebedtim
me?Researchhersfoundoutthat
evenhavvingacupoffcoffee6hoursbeforebbedtimecancausesleepissues.Caffeeinehasaha alflifeof
around55to8hours(dependingonyourownn,biochemicalmakeup).Thismeanstthatafter5tto8
hours,halfofthecafffeinesubsta
anceisstillinnoursystem
m.Caffeine,in
notherwordds,haslongtterm
effectso
onourbodies.Wetherefforeneedto setacaffein necurfew,esspeciallyifw
wearesensitiivetoit.
Formosttpeople,Steevensonreco ommendstosetupthisccurfewbeforre2pm.

Caffeinenotonlyafffectsyourneervoussystem m,italsoaffeectsyourendocrinesysttem,whichiss
responsiibleforthessecretionofh
hormones.Innthiscase,twoantislee ephormoness:cortisoland d
adrenaliine.Adrenalinemakesyo ousharpanddcansurelyb benefityourworkperforrmancebutthe
downsid deisthecrashmoment.Caffeinew willspikeyouradrenalineup,butafteerthepeak
experienncecomesth hecrash,beloowthebase line.Result??Wefeeltireed,foggy,anddirritable.A
Asweve
seenintthepreviouschapter,the espikeincorrtisollevelsd ethebestefffectsonyoursleep
doesnthave
qualityn
neither.

Somelasstrecommen
ndationsoncaffeinefrom
mStevenson
n:

Trytoaavoidcaffein
neatall,or
ifpossible setacaffein
necurfewbe
efore2pm.Ittwilldepend
donhow
sensitiveeyouare.

Usingccaffeineinasmartandsttrategicway isperfectlyacceptable:forpeoplew
whosecortisoollevels
arenatuurallylowertthannormal,itcanbeut ilizedinthemorningtoh
helpboostyoourcortisol.Cortisol
pyoutoincreeasealertnesssandfocus..
willhelp

Beingcoolreferstohavingalo
owenoughc orebodytem
mperaturein
nordertohaavequalitativvesleep.
Itinvolvees2thingsh
here:

1) SSleepinaco
oolenvironm ment.Researrchfoundoutthattheop ptimaltempeeraturetosle eepinis
between60to68,whichisbetweeen15and20Celsiusdegrrees.Anythiingbeloworrabove
wwillcausesleeepdifficulties.
2) Becoolemo otionally:wo orryandstresssarelikelyttoarouseyo
oursystemanndtoincreasseyour
ccorebodyteemperatureandtherefooredisruptyoursleep.Inordertoreelaxbeforessleeping,
ttrytomeditaate,readorttakeahotbaath.Thiswilllhelpyouun
nstressandssleepbetterr.

Someco
ooltips:

OnAmaazon,youcanbuycoolingmatrasspaadswhichwiillhelpyoutoloweryourrcorebody
temperaatureonhotsummernights.

Takeawarmbath1
1to2hoursbeforebe dtime.Itwillinitiallyincrreasetheboodytemperatture,but
eventuallyyourbodyywillcooloffftoalower levelaround
dbedtime.

Moneyytimesleephappensbe etween10pm mand2am.Inthistimeperiod,the humanbodyygets


themosttbeneficialh
hormonalsecretionsanddrecovery.M umangrowthhhormone(HGH,
Melatonin,hu
alsoknownastheyyouthhormo one)andmoorearereleaasedintheirstrongestdoosesduringthesekey
nordertokeeepavibranttandyouthfuullook,itsim
hours.In mportanttobackupsleeepduringthe
ese
hours.

AmongSStevenson,h humanbeingsaredesigneedtogotossleepwithinafewhours afteritgetsdark.


Whathaappensaroun nd10pmisttypicallyani ncreaseinin
nternalmetabolicenergyyinordertorepair,
strength
henandrejuvvenateourbbody.Ifyourreasleepbythen,thatsok.Butwhennyourenot,yourisk
havingasecondwindenergy,asStevensooncallsit.Thismeansanincreaseofm metabolicen nergy
thatmigghtmakeitharderforyoutofallasle epatlateron.

Themain
nrecommen
ndationsfrom
mStevensonnsoundasfo
ollows:

Dontggetthe10pm
mto2amrule
etoseriouslyy.Toenjoyggood,qualitativesleepit isimportantttoknow
thatyoushouldgotoobedwithin
nafewhourssofitgettinggdarkoutsid
de.Thiswillttypicallybeb
between
m,dependinggonthetimeoftheyearr.Naturewillgiveyouthecues;yourrjobistoaccceptit.
911pm

Trynotttoworkinnightshifts.Studieshavveshownthaatthesearenegativelyreelatedwithp
proper
health.R
Remember:yyoualwaysh haveachoicee.
Knowtthehumanslleepcycle.Sleepcyclesttypicallylastfor90minutteseachanddrepeat4to 6times
pernight.Thissleepcyclefollow
wsapredictabblepattern:

Stevenso onrecommeendsustopla anoursleepdurationbasedonthesleepcycles. Thekeyistrryingnot


tointerrruptasleepccycle.Trytosetyouralarrmafterthelastblockoff90minsofaasleepcycle
e.

Thefood dyoueatnottonlyaffectssyourbrain,,butalsoyou
ursleep.You
urgutistypiccallyyoursecond
brainbeecauseofallltheneuronsitconsistsoofandshouldthereforebetreatedw well.Yourgutis
importan ntsinceitprroducesserotoninandmmelatonin,the e2qualitysleephormoones.Researcheven
foundthhatthegutco ontainedoveer400timessmoremelattoninthanth hepinealglanndinyourbrain.You
willstartttoseewhytreatingthegutwellby eatingtheriightfoodsi.e.goodsleeepnutrienttsis
veryimp portant.

Agoodffunctioningggutequalsaggoodgutmiicrobiome.M
Makethegoo
odbacteriat hrivebyavo
oidingthe
followinggthings:

A
Agriculturalchemicals(suchaspesticcides,fungiccides,etc.)
Processedfooods(softdrinks,microw wavemeals,b breakfastcerreals,pizza,eetc.)
A
Antibioticusse(antibioticcsusuallykill ALLbacteriaaincludingthegoodonees..)
C
Chemicalfoo odadditivesandpreservvatives(suchasartificialccolours&flaavouring,asp
partame,
highfructosecornsyrup p,etc.)

Stevenso onfurtherm
mentionssom megoodsleeepnutrientsssuchas:Se elenium,VitaaminC,Tryptophan,
Potassium,Calcium,VitaminD,O Omega3s,M Melatonin,VitaminB6andprobiotics..IllleavetheGoogle
workforryoutofigurreoutwhichfoodsareri chinthesen
nutrients.Jusstmakesureeyousupplyyourself
withtheesenutrientsonadailybasis.Ingeneeral:aimtoe
eatorganic,lo
ocallygrownnandunproccessed
foods.

Inthispaart,Stevenso
onsuggestsyyoutomakeeyourbedrooomaquiet,ccalmandpeeacefulplace e.Alotof
peoplem makethemisstakeofdoinngtomanyraandomactivvitiesintheir bedroomsuuchascallingg,
working,,painting:wwhateveritm
maybe.Thepproblemwith hthisisthatyouarenot creatingasttrong
neuroaassociationttosleepwheenyougointthere.Makin
ngyourbedroomakindoofsleepsanctuary
canallowwyoutoassoociatethatp
peaceful,calm
matmosphe erewithagoodnightofssleep.

Sowhatdoesasleep
psanctuarylooklike?

Freshair:op
penawindow w(ifyoucan )oruseanaairionizertokeeptheairrfresh.
Plants:Itmigghtseemcra
azy,buthavi ngaplantin
nyourbedroomcandow wonderstoyour
ssleep.Someplantssuchhasthepereennialsnakeplantarea abletoabsorrbcarbondioxide
aandreleaseoxygendurin ngthenight,,boostingtheairqualityinyourbedrroomasare esult.
Peaceful,calm,quiet,ettc.Youknowwthedeal.

BigO??Whatisthaatsupposedttomean?Itrreferstoanorgasm.Researchfounddoutthatdduringan
orgasmyouandyo ourpartnerp
produceacoocktailofcheemicalswhich
hwillpromootesleep.The
ese
chemicalsinclude:

OOxytocin:thhelovehorm moneproomotesbondingbetween npeoplewheentheyreen ngaged


iinintimateaactivities.Furrthermore,itthasacalmiingeffectcounteringtheeeffectsofco
ortisol.
SSerotonin:aantistressne eurotransmittterwhichin ncreasesdeep,nonREM sleep.
Norepinephrine:antistrressneurotraansmitterwhichbetterstheefficacy ofREMslee ep.
VVasopressin:neurotranssmitterwhichhincreasesssleepqualityyandreducesslevelsofco ortisol.
Prolactin:hoormonelinke edtosexual satisfaction whichmakesyousleepyy.

Sleepingginapitchdarkroomwillimproveyooursleeptre emendously.Why?Againn:research.SStudies
foundthhatartificiallighthasdevvastatingimppactsonmelatoninlevels.Exposure toartificialllight
duringusualhourso ofsleepcouldddecreasemmelatoninlevvelsby50%.Youprobabllybeginto
understaandwhypeo oplecallnighttimelightlightpollutiion.Itliterallypollutesoourbodies,ssince
melatoninisamajorrsupporthormoneofyoourbody.Itn notonlyhelpsustogetqqualitativesle eepbut
alsoimp
provesourim mmunesystem,normalizeesourblood dpressure,enhancesourrDNAprotecction,
etc.

Now,youmightthin nk:Oh,thatsallright.Il ljustbuyaneyemasktooblockoutthhelight.Wrrong.Our


skintoojustlikeou
ureyeshasspecificphottoreceptorsthatcanpickkuplight.Soo,wheneverrthereis
anylighttinyourbed
droom,yourbodyisactuaallyabletop dwillsenda messagetoyour
pickitupand
brainandorgansthaatcaninterfe erewithyou rsleep.Soittsnotjustabboutcoverinngyoureyes..Its
aboutcrreatingapitcchblackroom m,blockingllightnotonlyyfromoutsid debutalsoinnsideyourbedroom.
Howcan nyoudothatt?Firstly,ino
ordertoblocckoutoutsid delights,you
ucanusebl ackoutcurttains
(yes,theeyexist.DossomeGoogle ework!).Lighhtsinsideyourbedroom cancomefrromroomlightsand
electronicdevicessu withatowel orgetthemoutof
uchasalarmclocks,TVs,,etc.Trytoccoverthemw
yourrooom.

Howareesleepande exerciseintertwined?Ifyyouexercise e,youareacttuallytearinggdownyourrbodyby


creatingthousandso oftinymicrotearsinyouurmusclefib bers.Sleepth
henistheheealingmechaanism.
Duringsleep,yourbo odywillreleasebeneficiaalhormonessandrepairm mechanismssthatwillbuildyou
upbetteerandstronggerthanbefo ore.Thatsw
whyitissoim
mportanttoggetagoodniightofsleepaftera
workouut.Onlythenwillthebenefitsofexerrcisingsuchasanenhan ncedmetaboolism,aboossted
hormoneefunctionan ndanimprovvedinsulins ensitivityppositivelyimpactyourboodyandhealth.

Whenisthebesttim metoexercisse?Accordinngtoresearch,exercising ginthemornningwillbrinngthe


bestben
nefitstoyourrsleepandh health.Why morning?Aggain,morningexercisecaanencourageyour
bodytoincreasetheenaturalproductionofcoortisolandp puttingtheciircadiancycleeontrack(a
atleast,if
youreexercisingouttside).Furthermore,youuallowyourbodytocoo oloff(seePAART5)whichis
necessarrytoprepareeyourselfforagoodnighhtofsleep.TThisistheproblemwithhexercisingllatein
theeven
ning:itincreaasesyourcorebodytem mperatureandamongStevensoniitcantakeupto4to
6hoursttoreallycoo
oloff.There
efore,itmighhtbegivingyyouaharderrtimefindinggsleep.

Exerciseisnotonlyaawaytokeepyourbody young(thisinfactissscientifically yprovensincce


musclesformareserrvoirforantiiaginghorm monesthathe elpprotectyyourDNAfroomoxidation.Getting
leanmussclewillactivvethosehorrmonesand keepyouyoungerasare esult),itwill alsomakeyousleep
better.EEspeciallyweeightliftingissverybenefficialtoyoursleep.Weigh htliftingtrigggersyourbo
odyto
producemoreanabo olichormone esthatwillm
makeyoufee elbetter,lookbetteranddsleepbetter.
Stevenso onrecommeendsustolifttweightsat least2daysperweekto optimizesleeep.Doesthismean
thatallw
weshoulddo oisweightlifting?Offcooursenot.Weightliftingisessentialbbutyoucane easily
startsommeotheracttivitiesarounndthatsuch astennis,baasketball,etcc.Whateveryyoulove.Aslongas
yougetaagoodnighttofsleepafterit.

Inthispaart,Stevenso
onrecomme electronicfriends(mobbilephones,iPads,
endsustomoovealloure
laptops,televisions,etc.)outofo
ourroomin ordertopro
otectourslee
epandhealthh.Why?Well,not
onlybeccauseofthereasonsdiscussedinparrt3and10(rrememberth hedownside sofartificialllight)
butalsobecauseofttheEMFsorrElectroMaagneticFieldssthesedeviccesareemittting.Researcchfound
thatlonggtermexpossuretothese eEMFscan suppressme elatoninprodduction.EMFFsarealsolinked
withauttoimmunediseasesbecauseofthediisruptioninccellularcomm municationttheyevoke.B Bewary
ofthat.TThekeymesssage?Dontkeepyoureelectronicdevviceswithyoouifitsnot neededand
especially:getthemoutofyourbedroom!

Tips:

ButmycellphonefuncttionsasmyaalarmBu uyanalarmcclockwithaffullshutoffdimmer.
ayfromyourrbed(around2
Itissuggesteedtoputallelectronicdeevisesatleast6feetawa
meters)
Beingovverweightcaancauseslee epissues.Reesearchshow
wedthataffterconsumiingameal
overweigghtpeopleccanproduceupto10tim mesmorecortisolthanpe eoplewitha healthyweigght.Let
cortisolbbethenumb beroneantisleephorm moneandyoouknowwha atsgoingonn.Thebigseccretof
thisparttisthatweshouldbecommeveryawarreofthefacttthatweinfluencethebbehaviourofour
hormonees.AmongStevenson,acombinationnofhormone ehealthyfoo ods,hormonnehealthyexxercise
andhorm monehealth hysleepwillkeepyouslim
m,youngandvitalized.

Losingbodyfatisallaboutprodu ucingtherig hthormonessandavoidin ngthebadoones.Sowhicchare


htones?Inthiscase,the
therigh esearetheo nesthatusestoredbodyyfatforfuel..Whataboutthebad
ones?Th hemostimportantfatstoringhormooneisinsulin n.Butwhatp
provokesittooproduce?
Carbohyydrates:anyttype.Thesemacronutrieentscanbefo ad,pasta,ricee,potatoes,refined
oundinbrea
sugarysttufflikecakees,pies,cookkiesandsodaa.Evenfruit.Ifyoureallyywanttolossefat,yoush
hould
focusonneatingmoreeoftheothe er2macronuutrients:proteinandHEA ALTHYfats.HHowcontrad dictory:
eatingfaatstolosefat?Yes,itstrrue.Yourboddyneedsfatstofunctionnproperly,b uttherightfats
whicharretheunsatu uratedfats.Y Youcangettthesefatsbyyconsumingfish,nuts,seeedsandvarrious
kindsofvegetables.Anyway,byeatingahighherratioofp proteinandh
healthyfats,yourbodyw will
naturallyyproducemoreglucagon ninsteadof insulin.Thishormonewillevokethebreakdownof
storedfaattyacidsforrfuel.Inotherwords:yoouwillburnm morefat.

Buttherrelationoveerweightsle
eepissuesaalsoholdsvicceversa:beingsleepdepprivedcanalsocause
obesity.Stevensoneexplainsthattwhenyour ephysicallyandmentallyytired,your rbraincravessthe
extracalloriestokeepeverythinggfunctioninggonatabase elinelevel.A
Andwhereccanitfindtheeseextra
calories??Right.Fastcarbohydrattes:cookies,,icecream,ccereals,etc.Moreover,ssleepdeprive ed
peopleaalsocarrydecreasedleve elsofleptinwwiththem.Leptinisknow wnasasatieetyhormoneand
regulateesourappetite.Withlesssofthisinouurtiredbodiees,weoften consumem morefoodsth han
actuallyneeded.You ualreadystarttoseeap attern.Itsamassiveviciouscircle.

Somelasstrecommen
ndationsbyStevenson:

Ifyourreveryhungryrightbefo
orebedtime: consumeahighfat,low wcarbsnack..Ifyougoto
ohighon
thecarbsjustbeforeebed,theblooodsugarcrrash(afterth
heinitialspike)maywakeeyouup.However,
onsumeyourlastmealatleast90minnutesbefore
trytoco ebedtime.

Eatmooremicronutrientrichfoo odsakareallfoods.Reconnectwithnaturebyeaatingavarietyof
plants,fiish,seeds,ettc.Skipallprrocessedfooods.

Startyo
ourdaywith
haproteinanndfatrichbrreakfast.The
ekeytofatlo
ossistokeeppinsulindow
wn
throughthefirstparrtoftheday.

Theprobblemwithalccohol?Themmainissueis thatalcoholdisruptsthe
emostimpoortantstageo
ofour
sleep:th
heREMsleep pstage.Thisisthestage wherememmoryprocessinghappenss:ourshorttterm
memorieesandexperriencesgetconvertedinttolongtermmemories.Drinkingabuunchofboozze
beforeggoingtobedwontallowyoutogetthhebeneficialeffectsofR
REMsleepanndasaresuultyour
bodywo efully.Anothherproblem
ontbeablettorejuvenate mofdrinkingalcoholcloseetobedtime
eyour
sleepmaaygetinterruuptedbythe eurgentnee dtourinate.Alcoholisd
diureticorassubstanceth
hat
promoteestheproductionofurine.Thereforeeitwillcause eyourbodyttoexpelmorrefluidsand
besidestthatincreasethelikelih
hoodofdehyydration.Alccoholmayalsoincreasetthedownsidesof
sleepapnea,makinggthebreathin ngduringsleeepmuchhaarderandinccreasethelikkelihoodofwwaking
up.

Recomm
mendationsb
byStevenson
n?

Trytoh
haveyourlasstalcoholicd
drinkatleastt3hoursbefforebedtime
e.Justmake sureyourbo
odyhas
enoughttimetoeliminatethealccoholoutofyyoursystembeforegoingtosleep.

morewater.Ifyoudodrinkalcoholb eforebedtim
Drinkm me,makesurretodrinkwwaterinbetw
ween
yourdrin
nks.Thiswilllhelptoelim
minatetheh angovereffe
ectsalcohol hasonyourrbodybykee
eping
youhydrrated.

Mostpeopledontreealizethatth
heirsleepinggpositionmaatters.Infactt,itdoes.Thhemostimpoortant
thingwhhenitcomestoagoodsleepingposittionismaintainingthein ntegrityofyoourspine.Thhis
means:kkeepingyourrspineinarightlinewhiileyourelyin
nginbed.Th
hebestposittionstodoisseither
lyingonyourbackorronyoursid
de.Lyingonyyourstomachmightcom mpromisetheenaturalcurvvein
ne.Skippingthepillowm
yourspin mightbeagooodideathen n.

Anotherinterestingffactisthatyoushouldreeplaceyourm
mattressatleastevery7years.Why??
Becausethemattresssresiliencygetsworseeeveryyear.A AmongSteve enson,most mattressesssag25%
withinth
hefirst2yeaarsandtheycontinueto degrademorefromtherreon,possibblygivingyouuback
problem
msandmuscletensionwithinyourhippandspine.

Everyoneereadingthisprobablya alreadyexpeeriencedthefollowing:Y Youpreparefforbed,getintoit


andsudd worryingaboutthethingssyoucouldn
denlystartw ntdothatda
ayorstillhavvetodo.Thissoff
course,iishighlydysffunctionalfo
oryoursleep .Thebestre
emedyhereiiscalledmedditationorb brain
training..Meditationislikeamusscle:themo reyoutrainyourmind,themoreca lmandprese entyoull
becomeovertime.R Researchfiguuredoutthattmeditationisabletoincreasefeelgoodhorm mones
suchaseendorphins.Italsolowerrsstresshormmoneslikeco ortisolande
evenreducessinflammatio oninthe
body.Annotherstudyyevenfoundthatadvanccedmeditato orshavehighherbaseline levelsofmelatonin.
Inshort:aperfectcoomboforagoodnightoffsleep.

Thebesttthingabouttmeditationisthatitnottonlybenefitsyoursleep,butalsoyoourwork
perform
mance.Medittationliterallyaltersthesstructureofthebrain,thhickeningtheeregionsasssociated
withatteention,focussandsensoryprocessingg.Meditation oremakeyouumorefocused
ncantherefo
whenenngagingindaailyactivities.Sowhatistthebesttimetomeditatte?Inthemoorningassooonasyou
wakeupporrightbefforebedatnight,whenyyoureoperatingclosetothealphaoorthetabrain nwaves.
Thesearrethebrainwwavefrequenciesthatarrerelatedtoarelaxed,ccalmandnonnthinkingmmind.
PersonaalTIP:DownloadtheappHeadspace andgetstaartedwithgu uidedmeditaation.Itsap
perfect
waytostartyourmeeditationjourney.Youcaanevenchoo
osethetimeyouwanttoomeditatean ndthe
focusoftheguidance(onrelationships,perfoormance,he
ealth,etc.).

Asalwayys:yourlifesttyleandfood
dchoicesshoouldbeprim
mary.Whentthisisonpoi nt,youmigh
ht
considerrtakingsomeehelpfulsup pplements.SSomeofthessupplementaationaidsddescribedbyy
Stevensoonare:

Chamoomile:Chamo omileteaisa
anexcellent teatohavebeforebedtime:itrelaxeesmusclesa
andcalms
thenervvoussystem.

Kavakaava:Preparingacupofkkavakavateaacanalsobe
esuperbidea
abeforebeddtime.

Valeriaan:Herbthattisusedinm
medicinefor peoplehavin
ngdifficultiestofallasleeep+alsopro
omotes
uninterruptedsleep..Youcantakkethisherbbbydrinkingteaaswell.

5HTP,GABA,andLtryptophan:isolatedc hemicalswh
hichcanbeta
akeninpillfoorm.

Everyoneereactsdiffeerentlytowa
ardssupplemments.Heightt,weight,guthealth,streesslevels,
inflammation,etc.caanallhaveaninfluenceoonhowyouwillreactsobecautiousofthat.Experiment
andalwaaysstartwithhalowdose
etoseehow youreact.

Ourbodiesarenaturrallywiredto
osleepatnigghtandbeawakeduring gtheday.Th isisbecauseeofour
genetics:ourancestoorshadnoreealadvantaggeofstaying upatnight.Theireyesigghtsuckedin nthe
darknesssandtherefooretheycouuldntseepreedators.Aco ommonargument:But wedontliveinthe
woodsanymore,don ntwe?Sow
whybother?.Beforesayyingthis,bea awarethatggeneticadaptations
cantakeethousandsoofyearstom
manifestitsellf.Thisisjustttoprovethatweshoulddalltrytoge
etour
sleepwhhenitsdarkoutside,and
dwakeupeaarly(i.e.shortlyafterthe esunrise)inoordertosyn
ncour
bodycloockwiththeearthsnatuuralcircadiannrhythms.FFurthermore,Stevenson arguesthatyour
healthw
willberadicallyimprovew
whenyoure honouringyyourbodysn naturalhormmonalclock.

Sometip
psonhowto
oriseearlyin
nthemornin g:

Getverry,veryexcited:thinkoffsomethingyyoureallywanttodothe
enightbeforreandmake
ethisa
cuetoth
hattriggersyyoutowakeup.

Jumpo
outofbed:DDontwaittoolongtogettup.Jumpo outandtryto
oawakeyourrsenses:takkeacold
shower((whichIloveetodo),openthecurtainns,goforarun,drinkacupofcoffee//tea,etc.

Putyouuralarmontheothersid way,youareobligedtosttandupandgoputit
deoftherooom:Inthisw
off.Itwillhelpyouto
owakeup.
Usemasssage.Manyofusstronglyunderestim matetheimpactofmasssageonsleepp.Massageu unlocks
yoursym
mpatheticneervoussystem m(fightorfllight)andacttivatesyourparasympatthic(restandddigest)
nervoussystem.Itallsoislinkedw
withincreassedserotonin nproductionn,oxytocinaandareducttionof
cortisolandalotofo
otherhealthbenefits.Inshort:aperrfectcombofforagoodn ightofsleep
p.

Agreatw
waytodoso omeselfmassageiscall edgutsmasshing.Youlie
edownona softball(pre eferably
thesameesizeofaso
occerball)an
ndyourollyoourabdomin
nalmuscleso overtheball..Itshouldtrigger
yourparrasympathicnervoussysttem.Googleeitformoreinformation.

Inthispaart,Stevensoonrecomme endstoNOTw othingtosleeep.Helinksthisto


weartight,rrestrictiveclo
ourlymp pathicsystem morwastemanagemenntsystem:iffyouwearto oorestrictiveeclothes,the
extracelllularfluid(orwastetha
atourcellsprroduce)canstarttopoolindifferenttplacesinthebody
notgettiingthechancetocirculate.Thiscanccauseyouto owakeup.Trytowearlooose,comfyclothes
ornoneatallinordertogetthhebestsleeppyoucangett.

Eachdayy,trytogetiincontactwiiththeearthhssurface.TTheycallitg
groundingorrearthing.The
mainbenefitofgrou undingisthattitallowsneegativelychaargedantioxidantsfromttheearthtoenter
thebodyyandneutraalizepositivelychargedfrreeradicalsaatsitesofinfflammation. Thesefreerradicals
aresetooffnaturallybythebodytoaddressccellulardamaage.Studieshaveproveddthatground dingis
oneofth hemosteffeectivewaystoreducecarrdiovascularrisksandimprovethequualityofyourblood.
Italsoacctivatesthep
parasympath hicnervousssystemandtthereforered ducesstress..

So:makeeitahabitto
ospendsom mequalitytim
me(10minsoormore)witthyourbare feetontheground,
whetherritssand,grrassorsoil.Y
Youcanevennmakeuseoofearthingtechnologynnowadayssu uchasan
earthinggmat.CheckGoogleform moreinform ationifyouareintereste
ed!

THEEN
ND