Sleep, The only time that repairs aging

Sleeping pills increase mortality by 25%

Sleep, The Only Time That Repairs Aging, Healthy Living Magazine, Anti-Aging

Sleep, The Only Time That Repairs Aging, Healthy Living Magazine, Anti-Aging

It is during sleep that cellular and DNA repair can take place. When sleep disturbances are chronic, the body starts to age more rapidly due to the fact that it has less time to get this repair. Americans are averaging less sleep per night than ever before due to stress, electromagnetic radiation and constant stimulus from the wireless society.

According to Daniel Kripke, MD, author of The Dark Side of Sleeping Pills, who spent 30 years researching the safety of sleeping pills, the side effects of even the safest products are numerous and run the gamut of symptoms: depression, fatigue, poor ability to concentrate, “hangover” feeling, impaired memory, amnesia and increased risk of accidents and death.

Kripke found that there was a 25% increase in mortality rate among those people taking sleeping pills nightly over those who never took them and a 10-15% increase in mortality in those who did occasionally over those who never used them. Deaths from suicides, cancer, heart disease and strokes all went up for those who took sleeping pills nightly.

Current pharmaceutical sleeping pills come from a classification of drugs called benzodiazepine agonists; these drugs have a slightly different chemical structure from benzodiazepines (which were first introduced in the 1970s); yet, they act on the same receptor sites in the brain as benzodiazepines. Addictive tranquilizers such as Librium and Valium were popular drugs that were among the first benzodiazepines introduced to the public in the early 1970s. Common side effects of these drugs include: poor memory and cognition, depression, anxiety, muscle aches and more.

There are three classes of natural substances that can be used to modify the cascade of sleep: botanicals, hormones and nutrients.

Combinations of herbs are particularly valuable for improving sleep quality, shortening the time of falling into and maintaining restful sleep.

Botanicals

Valerian: sedative
Chamomile: calming, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, carminative (reduces intestinal gas formation)
Ashwagandha: nervine (soothing of the nerves), adaptogenic, mild sedative, “Indian Ginseng”
Passionflower: nervine tranquilizer
Lemon Balm: sedative, anti-spasmodic, nervine, antidepressant, soothes gastrointestinal tract
Catnip: mild sedative, anti-anxiety
Skullcap: anti-anxiety without drowsiness, adaptogenic
Hops: sedative-hypnotic, smooth muscle relaxation
Green Tea: although contains small amounts of caffeine has been paradoxically found to lull the brain into quality sleep, perhaps as a consequence of the presence of L-theanine

Hormone

Melatonin: secretion by the pineal gland occurs with darkness and during sleep in healthy people; however has been shown to decline with age. Studies show that melatonin may shorten sleep induction time and reduce episodes of awakening, without necessarily increasing sleep time

Nutrients

Magnesium: induces muscle relaxation and causes changes in brain waves associated with relaxation
5 Hydroxytryptophan ( 5HTP): preferred over tryptophan because of its superior effect on serotonin synthesis. Serotonin is the neurotransmitter responsible for inducing a relaxed state of mind
Vitamins B3, B6 with Folate: necessary for the synthesis of chemical messengers in the brain (e.g. serotonin) and are anti-stress vitamins

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