Enhancing your Sleep to Protect Your Health

by THOMAS on Mar 30, 2014 • 2:00 pm

It is no secret that as our society and the world have become more complex and stressful, our sleep habits have suffered greatly. The importance of getting a “good nights sleep” is nothing new and traditional medical practices in Asia for over 5,000 years have stressed the importance of going to bed by 10 p.m. and getting up before 6 a.m. Recent research has confirmed that sleeping during this time period is indeed optimal for your health. Research has also shown that consistently staying up late doubles the risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and several types of cancer. Numerous studies have shown that swing shift workers and those working odd hours suffer numerous health consequences when compared to others with more normal routines. The reason for this has to do with the fluctuation of several hormones, the most important of which is melatonin, which is commonly referred to as the “sleep hormone”.  Melatonin is also extremely powerful in protecting against breast cancer but only if a person goes to bed at the proper time and the room is dark, quiet, and free of distractions. Scientists have discovered that when darkness falls, the pineal gland in the brain produces more melatonin. As the hormone level rises, you begin to feel sleepy. The moment you fall asleep, the level of melatonin goes much higher but only if you go to sleep at the proper time and the room is very dark.


There are several factors that explain why melatonin is so protective against breast cancer.


Melatonin is a very powerful antioxidant that destroys free radicals that damage your cells and DNA and can cause cancer.


Melatonin slows down the production of estrogen. Estrogen stimulates breast tissues, causing cell division to speed up.


Melatonin depresses the effects of epidermal growth factor and the hormone prolactin, both of which increase cell division.


Melatonin enhances the tumor fighting power of vitamin D.


If you have been diagnosed with breast cancer, going to bed in a dark room can be vitally important. Researchers have shown that tumors on laboratory animals grow seven times faster when exposed to a constant light source. You should also consider supplementing with melatonin if you are on chemotherapy as it enhances the effect of chemo drugs and provides protection against their harmful side effects. Melatonin is a powerful weapon against breast cancer and can be enhanced if an individual follows these tips for a good nights sleep:


Eat three nutritious meals a day but eat light in the evening.

Exercise regularly, best in the early morning.


Go to bed by 10 p.m.


No stimulants such as sweets or caffeine before bed.


Wear comfortable clothing to bed.


Avoid hot, spicy food at dinner.


No TV or work related stuff in the bedroom.


Gentle massage of the hands, feet, and neck before bed.


Practice effective stress management techniques.


Avoid alcohol before bed, allowing at least 2 hrs to metabolize.


Listen to soothing music before bedtime.


Warm shower or bath before bed


Clear the room of all cell phone, computer equipment etc.


Avoid bright colors in the bedroom.


Keep your bedroom clutter free.


Natural supplements that can enhance sleep include melatonin, 5-htp, calcium, magnesium, vitamin B-12, and the amino acids taurine and L-trypophan.


Herbs that help you relax include valerian, passion flower, chamomile, hops, kava kava, skullcap, and lemon balm.


If you are suffering sleep irregularities, try these simple natural remedies and find out which ones work best for you. You might be surprised to find that your body will eventually learn to anticipate the onset of sleep and will quickly and effortlessly drop into this restful state.


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