Why We Sleep – Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams
Why We Sleep – Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams, by Matthew Walker Ph. D.
Bach Flower Remedies’ “Rescue Sleep” helps calm our restless minds, providing natural relief of occasional sleeplessness caused by stress and repetitive thoughts. Bach Flower Remedies are non-sedative and non-habit forming.
The recently released book, with breakthrough research, “Why We Sleep” by Matthew Walker, illustrates the harm caused by not sleeping seven or more hours per day and proposes ways to promote the sleep that we need.
Five Tips for Better Sleep from Dr. Matthew Walker
1. Keep it regular.
Go to bed and wake up at the same time, even at the weekend.
2. Keep it cool
Lower your core temperature by 1.2 degrees Centigrade to fall asleep.
3. Dim the lights before bed
Bright lights and screens disrupt the production of the sleep hormone melatonin.
4. Walk it out
If you can’t sleep, get up and do something until the urge to sleep returns.
5. Pass on the Espresso and nightcap
Alcohol fragments sleep and block REM sleep, so don’t drink in the evening.
Matthew Walker is a professor of neuroscience and biology at the University of California at Berkeley. He is the founder of the Center for Human Sleep Science. Dr. Walker (not a medical doctor) started his career as a professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School where he came to believe that psychiatry and sleep were interconnected. He has dedicated over 20 years to sleep research.
Dr. Edward Bach, more than 80 years ago, had an equally strong belief that our emotional state plays a fundamental role in health, sickness, healing, and critical human functions like healthy natural sleep. Dr. Bach was the renowned English bacteriologist and researcher who discovered the Bach Flower Remedies. “Rescue Sleep” contains six of the Bach Flower Remedies 38 remedies found most effective in leading to better sleep.
Dr. Walker’s decades of sleep research point to serious harm to our health and our ability to fend off decease and heal ourselves caused by the insufficient or poor quality of sleep. Dr. Walker warns us that lack of sleep will shorten our lives and increase our chances of suffering from Alzheimer, for example. With serious sleep deprivation, the brain suffers loss of memory and learning capacity, emotional and mental health stress, aggression, hallucination, high blood pressure, and hormonal imbalances.
Whimsically Dr. Walkers says in his book, “Scientists have discovered a revolutionary new treatment that makes you live longer. It enhances your memory and makes you more attractive. It keeps you slim and lowers food cravings. It protects you from cancer and dementia. It wards off colds and flu. It lowers your risk of heart attacks and stroke, not to mention diabetes. You’ll even feel happier, less depressed, and less anxious. Are you interested?”. In addition, he continues, “Imagine if there was a medicine you could take that was guaranteed to make you live longer. A medicine that could help you stay slim, protect you from infection, and keep you feeling happy and fulfilled. Interested?”
“Well, listen to this: the medicine in question not only exists, but it is also already available free of charge in your own home. It’s called sleep“.
Dr. Walker warns against sleeping pills. “Sleeping pills are sedation, sedation is not sleeping.”
Side effects of prescription sleeping pills
Depending on the type, prescription sleeping pills may include side effects such as:
• Dizziness or lightheadedness
• Gastrointestinal problems, such as diarrhea and nausea
• Prolonged drowsiness, more so with drugs that help you stay asleep
• Severe allergic reaction
• Sleep behaviors, such as sleep-driving and sleep-eating
• Daytime memory and performance problems
The Bach Flower Remedies, on the contrary, are natural and have no known side effects.
Changing our environment to make it more inviting to better sleep, is part of good sleep hygiene. Another thing influencing satisfactory sleep is our emotions and how we manage them. Bach Flower Remedies is the name trusted for over 80 years for the natural, non-sedative, non-addictive relief from stress, fears, anxiety, and other emotional imbalances, any of which can disrupt our sound sleep and injure our health.
List of Active Ingredients in all Bach Remedies Rescue Sleep Products:
White Chestnut: To help ease restless mind.
Star of Bethlehem: For trauma and shock.
Clematis: For the tendency to “pass out”, and unconsciousness, being ‘far away’ and not present mentally.
Cherry Plum: Fear of mind giving way, verge of breakdown, anger.
Impatiens: For irritability, tension, and fidgety.
Rock Rose: For frozen terror and panic.
Content: 5x (HPUS) dilution Star of Bethlehem – Orithogalum umbellatum Rock Rose – Helianthemum Cherry Plum – Prunus cerasifera Impatiens – Impatiens gladulifera Clematis – Clematis vitalba White Chestnut – Aesculus Hippocastanum
For more information on “Why We Sleep – Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams” by Matthew Walker Ph. D. and the work of Dr. Edward Bach and his Bach Flower Remedies, or for personalized consultations on the Bach Flower Remedies, visit www.BachFlower.com
By Tony Dolz
Natural Health News
Learn more at www.BachFlower.com and its exclusive distributor www.DirectlyfromNature.com
Food Intolerance & ADHD – what every parent should know
by Sara Vance, Founder of ReBalance Life
There has been a rise in the number of kids diagnosed with ADD, according to a recent article in the New York Times. Now 11% of all school-aged children has ADHD, and 1 out of every 5 high school boys will receive an ADHD diagnosis. This represents a 40% increase in the past decade, which is raising many questions among experts – such as are ADHD medications being overused?
But what is leading to this increase, and what if many of these cases were simply a food sensitivity? According to this NPR article, a study conducted in the Netherlands and published on February 5, 2011 in the Lancet Journal, found that 64% of diagnosed cases of ADHD was actually caused by a hypersensitivity to food; and when the food was removed, the symptoms improved. According to the lead author of the study, Dr. Lidy Pelsser, “we have got good news — that food is the main cause of ADHD,” she says. “We’ve got bad news — that we have to train physicians to monitor this procedure because it cannot be done by a physician who is not trained.
Rarely are parents of kids with ADHD given any nutritional/supplementary options, they are simply given the diagnosis and sent home with a prescription for ADHD medication. But these medications are not without risk, including decreased appetite, depression and mood disorders, increased blood pressure, and more. So if the root cause of the inattention is food sensitivities, then shouldn’t we be treating the attention and behavior issues by first identifying and eliminating any offending foods, and adding in nutritional supplements; and if those fail – resorting to the medication?
So until doctors start to recognize and treat ADHD in this way, parents can educate themselves and find a practitioner that can help them navigate this approach to treating focus and attention issues. Although there is a percentage of kids who nutritional approaches won’t offer a full recovery, according to the study out of the Netherlands, a significant number of kids will benefit from nutritional changes. The only downside is that a food elimination diet it is not as easy as popping a pill every day. But even those that end up taking medications, many will also benefit from nutritional approaches and certain supplements.
What are the 3 most common foods associated with ADHD-like symptoms?
- Dairy. According to Doris Rapp, M.D., author of Is This Your Child? and The Impossible Child, dairy is at the top of the list of foods that cause behavior, focus & attention problems. Other signs that your child could have a problem with dairy? Bed wetting (past toddlerhood), asthma, temper tantrums, frequent ear upper respiratory or sinus infections, and vocal tics or throat clearing.
- Wheat/gluten. According to the book Dangerous Grains, written by James, Braly, MD and Ron Hoggan, M.A., “About 70% of children with untreated celiac disease show exactly the same abnormalities in brain-wave patterns as those who have been diagnosed with attention deficit disorder. Mood disorders are also common with gluten intolerances – including aggressive, angry, bullying, and irritable behavior.”
- Food colorings and additives. A total of 15 million pounds of dyes are added to foods each year, many of which are directly marketed at school-aged children. Food dyes have been linked to behavioral problems, hyperactivity, allergic reactions, and even some cancers. A study published in the journal Lancet in 2007, concluded that food dyes increased hyperactivity in children. Based on this study, the British government banned the use of food dyes, and all foods that contain dyes in Europe must come with a warning label that says “may have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children.” Read more about the Dangers Associated with Food Dyes at Disease-Proof.
These are 3 of the most common things to consider with regard to ADHD, but there are a number of other foods/substances that could be causing focus and attention problems – including high fructose corn syrup/sugar, pesticides, mercury, soy, eggs, corn – to just name a few.
How could food sensitivities create ADHD-like symptoms?
Nutrient deficiencies could be to blame. The small intestine is where most nutrients are absorbed into the bloodstream. Consuming foods that the body is sensitive to can cause damage to the small intestine, which can lead to issues in nutrient absorption and utilization. Another reason for nutrient deficiencies could be extremely picky eating, or a highly processed diet that is lacking in macro and micronutrients.
Some of the most common nutrient deficiencies found in kids with ADHD are:
- Omega 3 fatty acids – The brain is composed of over 60% fat, so diets must have sufficient amounts of healthy fats in order for our brains to function well. One of the most important fats for the brain is omega 3s – known as essential fatty acids. Essential means that our body can not manufacture them, so they must be consumed. A 1996 Purdue University study revealed that kids with learning and behavior problems had lower levels of the omega 3 DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) in their blood. Omega 3s can be found in fish like salmon, tuna, and sardines; as well as nuts, some seeds like chia, and fish oils, like Barleans Omega Swirl.
- B vitamins – Known as the Anti-Stress vitamins, B vitamins are important for energy, sleep cycles, and metabolism. B vitamins are also needed for the creation of important brain chemicals known as neurotransmitters. Because they are water soluble vitamins, B Vitamins are not stored in our bodies for very long – so they can very easily become depleted. Two of the B vitamins are particularly important for our brain functioning:
- Vitamin B6*: is needed for the synthesis of dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine – which are brain chemicals that regulate sleep cycles and focus/attention. Studies show that supplementation with Vitamin B6 with magnesium resulted in reduced central nervous system hyperactivity. *Although Vitamin B6 is water soluble, it is the one B vitamin that can accumulate and possibly lead to permanent nerve damage if taken in an excessively high a dose for long period of time. (learn more and see tolerable upper limits for Vitamin B6). It is recommended that you work with a Nutritionist or Health Practitioner when supplementing with high doses of vitamin B6.
- Vitamin B12 is required for the synthesis of amino acids that promote concentration. A B 12 deficiency can cause kids to be hyper, anxious, and also cause obsessive behavior, and if serious – can lead to pernicious anemia and serious neurological issues. Vitamin B12 can only be manufactured by bacteria – so it is very common for people with food sensitivities or digestive issues to have deficiencies – so identifying food sensitivities and removing them will also improve B12 status. Also probiotics are beneficial for improvings gut bacteria as well.
- Although Vitamin B6 and B12 are of particular importance for treating ADHD, I always recommend taking all of the B vitamins together as a full complex – as they work best together synergistically.
- Magnesium – it is estimated that 70% of the population could be deficient in magnesium, and up to 95% of kids with ADHD (read study). Magnesium is known as the calming mineral, and studies show that supplementing with magnesium can reduce hyperactivity in kids. Studies show that magnesium has also been shown to help with Tourette’s syndrome, which can co-exist with ADHD. The fourth most abundant mineral in the body, magnesium plays a key role in over 300 biochemical processes – including building strong bones, nerve functions, regulating blood pressure, maintaining body temperature, and for allowing muscles (including the heart) to release into a state of relaxation. Magnesium is important for healthy bones, as it helps calcium get into the bones, and also is important for synthesizing vitamin D. Calcium causes muscular contractions, while magnesium enables the muscles to release. Elevated calcium or depressed magnesium levels can cause muscles to stay in a contracted state. Low magnesium levels can be associated with constipation, restless leg syndrome, sleep issues, migraines, ADHD/hyperactivity, foot or eye twitches, muscle cramps/pain, irritability, and even an elevated risk of heart disease/stroke.
- Zinc – low zinc can lead to slow growth, delayed puberty and picky eating, and it is also associated with attention issues. Taking ADHD medication can also deplete zinc levels. A study published in 2011 in the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, found that those receiving a zinc supplement required 37% less amphetamine to receive the same results compared with those taking amphetamine plus placebo. The zinc appeared to improve the effectiveness of the amphetamine, so that a lower dose was needed for desired results. Studies have shown a positive correlation between zinc supplementation and behavior improvement.
- Probiotics – Balancing out the flora in the gut is important for everyone – for immunity and remaining a healthy weight; but it is also important for our brain and mental health. Our guts and our brains are closely interconnected via the vagus nerve, which is the primary route for the gut bacteria to be transmitted to the brain. So if our gut health is imbalanced, we will not be able to properly produce the neurotransmitters that our brain needs for focus, memory, and attention. Our gut health is directly reflected in our mood too – studies show that there will be an increase in levels of anxiety when our gut health is imbalanced, read more.
- High Quality Multivitamin – some kids with food sensitivities can have damage to the small intestine and therefore might have nutrient absorption issues, so even if they are taking a multivitamin or eating a high quality diet, they could still have deficiencies. For those kids, I recommend a supplement called IntraKID. It is an all-in-one carbon-bonded organic multivitamin that contains 71 trace minerals, vitamins, herbs, antioxidants, enzymes, probiotics, and more in a highly absorbable fulvic acid base. IntraKID is only available through practitioners, contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to order IntraKID.
Food elimination diets if not properly done or supplemented, could themselves result in nutrient deficiencies; so working with a Nutritionist or qualified health practitioner is recommended when embarking on a nutritional program to address ADHD. Doing a food elimination diet is one way to determine if there are sensitivities, but there are also tests that can be done to determine sensitivities.
*This article is for educational purposes only. The content contained in this article is not to be construed as providing medical advice. All information provided is general and not specific to individuals. Persons with questions about the above content as how it relates to them, should contact Sara Vance directly or their medical professional. Persons already taking prescription medications should consult a doctor before taking the above foods, herbs, vitamins or supplements to be sure there are no interactions.
Sara Vance is a Clinical Nutritionist in the Encinitas, CA area.
Sara offers nutritional counseling, School Assemblies, group classes, kids healthy cooking, and more.
Sara have over 100 articles, and several on ADD on her website. Visit ReBalanceLife.com for more information.
Friend Sara Vance at ReBalance Life on Facebook.
©2013, all rights reserved. Sara Vance.
Is Your Brain Shrinking Due To Stress? What Are The Signs?
Stress, fear, anxiety, panic, is treated with Bach Flower Remedies. Rescue Remedy is indicated for trauma, impatiens, daydreaming, stress, restlessness, panic attacks, temper tantrums and many more. Bach 7 groups, Bach 7 flowers, and Rescue Remedies are often mentioned. Dr. Oz and Dr. Phil have spoken about exhaustion and low sex drive. Pharmaceutical solutions for feeling overwhelmed, depressed, anxious, insomnia are unsatisfactory. Sleep problems, nervous tension, performance anxiety are example of reasons people trusted Bach Flower Remedies for over 80 years.
Researchers Discover the Telltale Signs and Unexpected Cause of Brain Shrinkage – Stress
Stress, fear, anxiety, panic, insomnia, and depression rob us, men and women, of our immediate quality of life. Now a team of researchers from Yale University has discovered that if emotional imbalances persist or are severe enough, it causes reductions in the amount of gray matter in parts of the brain that control physiological and emotional functioning; potentially causing permanent emotional and cognitive impairment. The report which was published in the journal Biological Psychiatry indicates that persistent emotional imbalances also reduce grey matter in parts of the brain that regulate physiological functions such as blood pressure and glucose levels.
What the Study Authors Believe
The lead author and assistant professor of psychiatry, Emily Ansell, believes that an increase in the number of stressful life events one endures could impact the individual’s ability to handle future stressful situations; a sentiment shared by Fellow Yale and Foundations Fund professor Rajita Sinha, who works in the Department of Neurobiology and the Yale Child Study Center. Dr. Sinha said the study brings to light the increased importance of finding ways to help people cope with stress properly. “The brain is dynamic and plastic and things can improve — but only if stress is dealt with in a healthy manner,” Sinha was quoted as saying. “If not, the effects of stress can have a negative impact on both our physical and mental health.”
Dr. Edward Bach’s Discoveries
Interestingly, the observation that emotional imbalances can be at the root of illness, disease or impaired healing was the trust behind the life and work of Dr. Edward Bach. Dr. Bach practiced medicine in late 19th century as a renowned Harley Street general practitioner, surgeon, and researcher in bacteriology and immunology, says Bettina Rasmussen, CEO of BachFlower.com.
Emotional Balance for Healthier Minds and Bodies
Dr. Bach discovered 38 plant and flower remedies that help us balance our emotions and free us from stress, fear, anxiety and depression, continues Rasmussen. Bach Flower has been a trusted name for over 80 years for its natural non-addictive remedies to treat the emotional imbalances behind stress, fears, and depression.
What Professionals and Celebrities Do
The Bach Flower Remedies have an enthusiastic following which includes Dr. Oz (Dr. Oz Show), Dr. Phil (Dr. Phil Show), Oprah Winfrey; and many public figures that live under a lot of stress, such as Selma Hayek, Emma Watson, Jennifer Anniston, Cate Blanche, Martha Stewart, and countless others.
Rasmussen says that Bach Flower Remedies and Rescue Remedy can now be found in many health food and nutrition stores, or online at www.DirectlyfromNature.com
DirectlyfromNature.com is the distributor for BachFlower.com and it serves online (Internet) end-users and the retail and wholesale market with the Bach Flower Remedies, 38 remedies kits, books, displays, and marketing materials.
Dr. Oz (the Dr. Oz Show) suggests 7 tips that he finds useful to reduce stress.
Tips for Reducing Stress
- Take More Restroom Breaks
- Show Up Five Minutes Early
- Change Your Stress Eating Habits
- Quit Stress Drinking
- Get Your Heart Pumping with Exercise
- Make It a Comedy Night
- Enjoy the Company of Friends
Tel. 800 214 2850
All the information shared on this website is for educational purposes only and is not meant to diagnose or treat any medical condition. This website is not a replacement for the relationship you have with your healthcare provider. Consult your physician or healthcare provider before taking any medication.
A Recent Study on Milk and ADHD
Changes in our diets can be used as a treatment intervention for ADHD. And according to a recent study from Norway, it seems that at least a sub-group of children with ADHD have a particular type of protein imbalance that may be contributing to a child’s ADHD symptoms, or maybe causing that child’s ADHD problem entirely.
The study began back in 1996 as a group of researchers and educators in Norway began a study of 23 children with ADHD. They placed the children on a milk-free diet and have followed the performance of the children since.
The researchers wanted to see if the ADHD symptoms in the children, particularly hyperactivity and impulsivity, would improve by avoiding milk, or more specifically the casein in the milk.
Since one of our long-held ADHD diet recommendations has been to stop
drinking cow’s milk for two weeks, then add it back into the diet and see if there is
any adverse reaction to it, we were very interested in the observations from this
Milk is one of the most common food allergens in children. Studies in several
countries around the world show a prevalence of milk allergy in children around
2% to 5%. Some estimates are much higher, as the researchers in this study
propose. Cow’s milk contains at least 20 protein components that may cause
allergic responses. The milk proteins casein and whey are the main problems.
Caseins give milk its “milky” appearance and are the protein in milk that makes it
possible to make cheese. Whey makes up the remainder of the milk substance.
We have been familiar with the theories of Dr. Kalle Reichelt and have offered Dr. Reichelt’s thoughts on diet, particularly milk and gluten, and mental illness to our readers for several years on our websites. So I have always been interested in studies that have investigated these positions. This study caught my eye.
The group was working under Reichelt’s theory that a metabolic disorder makes it
difficult to break down certain proteins might cause mental problems including
All twenty-three children in the long-term study had symptoms of ADHD and had
been shown to have abnormal levels of peptides in their urine.
The children followed a strict casein-free diet a year, and all but one had “clear
improvements” in their behavior and attention span.
One of the researchers noted, “One of the kids I worked with started on the diet on Wednesday and by the weekend his parents said they saw a huge positive change in his behavior.
Not drinking cow’s milk is certainly a simple and safe intervention to try. And, as we like to say, if what you are doing works, don’t mess with it. But if it doesn’t work, try something else.
Learn more about our recommended Eating Program or ADHD Diet at
http://newideas.net/adhd/adhd-diet or to read more about ATTEND with amino
acids for a natural but effective treatment for ADHD at http://newideas.net/attend.
The ADHD Information Library at http://newideas.net serves over 300,000 parents
and teachers each year by providing accurate and timely information on ADHD.
Sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter with Douglas Cowan, Psy.D., the clinical
editor of the ADHD Information Library, or take our free online screening test for
ADHD athttp: //ne wideas.net/adhd-online-test- screening .
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