As I mentioned in my last post, sleep is the only thing that I’ve been having difficulty incorporating into my healthy routine at the moment. I know it’s just as important as exercise and eating well, but why? This guest post by holistic healer, Dr. Mitchell Proffman, has the answers!
The statistics tell us that one-third of the adult population is not getting enough sleep. I hope you aren’t one of them, but if you are, don’t worry, there are things you can do to help improve the situation.
You might have tried some pharmaceuticals to induce sleep. If that is the solution you tried, or are using, what you are doing is only inducing counterfeit sleep. It’s not the real thing. Besides the pills are really only meant to work short-term. There are many natural remedies that will work a lot better, and what you achieve will be sustainable, and you won’t have to run the risk of a range of some really unpleasant side effects.
We all know that losing weight is not always easy, and truthfully can be difficult, notwithstanding all of the promises that are made by all of the products on the market. We’ve all seen the commercials that guarantee us we can lose ten pounds in just one week. A recent study showed that women who had trouble losing the last few stubborn 5-6 pounds, while dieting, was fixed by sleeping an additional 30-60 minutes per night. Nothing else was changed, including diet or exercise regimens. That’s right, a little more sleep and the stubborn 5-6 pounds will have a good chance of coming off. A natural remedy for a very stubborn problem. This is no exaggeration.
Let me explain why it works this way. If you aren’t getting the sleep your body requires, your body starts producing cortisol, the stress hormone. There’s nothing abnormal about producing cortisol, however, it should be at its lowest levels at night while you are sleeping. The connection with losing weight is that when your body is producing extra cortisol your metabolism slows down.
Remember, metabolism is the process that breaks down proteins, carbohydrates and fats to yield the energy your body needs to maintain itself. So there you are, lying in bed, not sleeping, producing cortisol and slowing down your metabolism. No wonder, you can’t lose the weight. If you spend a little more time in bed, you will have a much better chance of shedding those extra 5-6 pounds you have been trying to lose.
There is an additional fact to consider. Leptin comes to use from the Greeks, leptos meaning thin. It is one of the most important hormones. It is a protein hormone that plays a key role in regulating appetite and metabolism. The truth is that sleep deprivation lowers your levels of this appetite-suppressing hormone. You don’t want to be depriving yourself of leptin.
Wait, there’s more to the story. We also know that sleep deprivation also boosts the appetite stimulant ghrelin. Studies have shown that if the concentration of ghrelin in a person’s blood rises significantly, they are going to eat more. Not sleeping and craving carbohydrates, well, I don’t have to tell you what that leads to. If you crave carbohydrates, you probably are going to eat. Right, it happens all the time. This is not because you are really hungry, but rather because your hormonal system is all mixed up.
You might have a choice. Some people like to wake up a little earlier and do some exercise. I recommend that you stay in bed and get that extra half hour of sleep instead. I’m not saying don’t exercise. We all know exercise is good. Later on in the day you can do some exercise. What I’m saying is that sleep works better than actually working out!! This sounds strange, but it is true.
Nothing beats healing, nourishing sleep for maintaining your ideal weight. One easy tip for a good night sleep is to go to sleep and wake up the same time everyday including weekends. This keeps your body on a regular cycle.
The next blog will talk about the foods you should be eating to help you overcome insomnia.
By Mitchell Proffman D.C.
About the Author
Dr. Mitchell Proffman has been a holistic healer for 30 years. He graduated from New York Chiropractic College in 1980. Dr Proffman has studied all forms of natural healing. He has lectured to various universities and organizations. There have been many media appearances on television and radio. He has written extensively for many health magazines. The natural ways to cure insomnia have been his main focus and passion for the last ten years. His book, The Deep Sleep Diet is available now. His contact information is: firstname.lastname@example.org or www.chirohands.com.
These are great tips for improving sleep, Dr. Proffman! Do YOU have any sleep tips you can share with us in the comment section below?