Dr. Russell Blaylock, author of The Blaylock Wellness Report newsletter, is a nationally recognized board-certified neurosurgeon, health practitioner, author, and lecturer. He attended the Louisiana State University School of Medicine and completed his internship and neurological residency at the Medical University of South Carolina. For 26 years, practiced neurosurgery in addition to having a nutritional practice. He recently retired from his neurosurgical duties to devote his full attention to nutritional research. Dr. Blaylock has authored four books, Excitotoxins: The Taste That Kills, Health and Nutrition Secrets That Can Save Your Life, Natural Strategies for Cancer Patients, and his most recent work, Cellular and Molecular Biology of Autism Spectrum Disorders. Find out what others are saying about Dr. Blaylock by clicking here.

Sleep Your Way to Better Health

Friday, 11 May 2012 07:26 AM

While cholesterol-lowering medications have been among the most profitable prescription drugs for the pharmaceutical industry, revenue for sleep medications is on the rise as approximately 60 million Americans experience chronic sleep disorders.

The problem with drugs is that they rarely produce restful sleep and often plague users with a number of complications and side effects, including next-day drowsiness, sleepwalking and confusion.

The lack of sleep can sharply influence your quality of life as well as raise your risk of everything from automobile accidents to obesity and heart attacks. See my report "Good Sleep: Stop Insomnia, Reduce Stress, Boost Your Total Health" for detailed information.

Below are a few steps that will increase the likelihood of a good night's sleep:

• Always try to go to bed at least by midnight. Staying up late resets the biological clock and can disrupt sleep patterns.

• Keep the room slightly cool. Benjamin Franklin suggested a cool pillow to induce sleep.

• Make sure the room is dark. Avoid nightlights, brightly lit phone dials and illuminated clocks.

• Try playing soothing music on a low volume at bedtime.

• Avoid reading or watching television at least one hour before bedtime. Allow yourself time to wind down.

• Avoid sugar and sweet foods in the evening. Some people will become hypoglycemic during the night, and this will wake them up. Try eating a piece of turkey by itself (no bread) before bedtime. Turkey is high in L-tryptophan, an amino acid that the brain uses to generate the sleep neurotransmitter serotonin. For more tips on controlling your blood sugar, read my special report “The Diabetes Solution.”

• Avoid caffeine, smoking and all foods containing excitotoxins.

• Avoid sleeping late and taking naps during the day.

• Exercise earlier in the day. Exercise lowers inflammatory cytokines. Exercising late in the day revs up the metabolism and this can keep you awake. Do not exercise after 7PM.

• Before retiring for the night, take vitamin C, magnesium citrate, and melatonin. For details on how vitamins can boost your health, read my special report “Key Vitamins That Save Your Heart, Prevent Cancer and Keep You Living Long."

Other natural sleep aids include:

• Calmative teas Chamomile, valerian root, passionflower and catnip all calm and sooth the nerves.

• Flavonoids Many flavonoids calm anxiety. The most useful are hesperidin and quercetin.

• Omega-3 Take your fish oils one hour before bedtime. The omega-3 fatty acids suppress the cytokines that disturb sleep. "Omega 3: Nature’s Miracle Panacea" explains the many additional benefits of omega-3 oils.

• Glucosamine While we usually associate this product with healthy joints, recent research has shown that it can also reduce immune damage.

• Chinese Skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis) This herb contains some powerful anti-inflammatory flavonoids that have been shown to protect the brain and calm anxiety. It has a long safety record and is backed up by extensive research.

It is important to remember that there are many different reasons people develop chronic insomnia—and there are often very specific problems that must be addressed before an insomniac can enjoy a solid night of sleep. For instance men with prostate hypertrophy can benefit from beta-sitosterol, saw palmetto and pygeum, which prevent trips to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

© HealthDay

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Friday, 11 May 2012 07:26 AM
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