Manage Insomnia Naturally - Grace Ngo Foundation

Health, Knowledge, Natural Food Matters

Friday, 18 October 2019

Manage Insomnia Naturally


The importance of quality night sleep in our overall wellness cannot be overemphasized.  Not sleeping at night is one of the worst and most annoying aspect of ill health if you ask me.  Again, I can  say that whatever attacks or defeats your sleep, is already on the verge of victory over you.  Natural foods remains my best and preferred solution to insomnia.  We shall study it under the following outline:

Outline

Introduction
1.  What is Insomnia
2.  Types of insomnia
3.  Symptoms of insomnia
4.  Causes of Insomnia
5.  Medical causes of insomnia
6.  Other causes of insomnia
7.  Some medications that cause insomnia
8.  People at risk of insomnia
9.  Effects of insomnia
10. Natural foods that helps you sleep
11.  Vitamins and nutrients that helps you sleep
12.  Food sources of Magnesium
13.  What about Tryptophan
14.  Food Sources of tryptophan
15.  Food Sources of  calcium
16.  Spices Rich in calcium
17.  What is  Vitamin B6?
18.  B6 Benefits
19.  Food sources of B6
20. Essential oils that Supports sleep and relaxation
21.  General Tips to Help deal  with insomnia  8
22.  Questions.

1.  Introduction

Majority of people at one time or the other may have experienced insomnia.  Sometimes during I'll health, poor diet or stress.  Insomnia can become a long-term thing. Sometimes, that can happen as the result of a more serious health condition, like depression, anxiety, or sleep apnea. Other times, insomnia can stem from crappy sleep habits, like eating too many heavy snacks before bed, sleeping in an uncomfortable environment, or staying glued to your smartphone or tablet all night long.  The good news however is that it is  treatable once you identify your own cause or source of insomnia.  At the end of this seminar, it is expected we would have been equipped with knowledge to help us deal with our own particular case.

1.  What is Insomnia

According to guidelines from a physician group, insomnia is difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, even when a person has the chance to do so. People with insomnia can feel dissatisfied with their sleep and usually experience one or more of the following symptoms: fatigue, low energy, difficulty concentrating, mood disturbances, and decreased performance in work or at school.

Inability to sleep over a period of time, especially at night is my definition of Insomnia.

2.  Types of insomnia

There are multiple ways to describe insomnia

Acute insomnia. A brief episode of difficulty sleeping.

Chronic insomnia. A long-term pattern of difficulty sleeping.

Comorbid insomnia. Insomnia that occurs with another condition

Onset insomnia. Difficulty falling asleep at the beginning of the night.

And various other forms

3.  Symptoms of Insomnia.

Here are a few symptoms to enable you know if you have Insomnia:

1.  Difficulty falling asleep.
2. Waking up often during the night and having trouble going back to sleep.
3.  Waking up too early in the morning.
4 Feeling tired upon waking.

4.  Causes of Insomnia
 
  How do we contribute?

Human beings are a diurnal species. We are active during the day. Some organisms are nocturnal. They are active at night. When you wake up in the morning and light enters your eyes, it reaches the brain and affects the activity of certain genes that help you power up for the day. Light exposure also reduces the production of melatonin, the hormone that helps you fall asleep. As the day progresses and sunlight diminishes in the afternoon, melatonin production turns back on. Melatonin production peaks at night after the sun has gone down to help you fall asleep. Be careful, exposure to indoor lights and light from smartphones, tablets, computer screens, and TVs can interfere with melatonin production and disrupt your sleep.

5.  Medical causes of insomnia

There are many medical conditions (some mild and others more serious) that can lead to insomnia. In some cases, a medical condition itself causes insomnia, while in other cases, symptoms of the condition cause discomfort that can make it difficult for a person to sleep.

Examples of medical conditions that can cause insomnia are:

Nasal/sinus allergies
Gastrointestinal problems such as reflux
Endocrine problems such as hyperthyroidism
Arthritis
Asthma
Neurological conditions such as Parkinson's disease
Chronic pain
Low back pain
Medications such as those taken for the common cold and nasal allergies, high blood pressure, heart disease, thyroid disease, birth control, asthma, and depression can also cause insomnia.
In addition, insomnia may be a symptom of underlying sleep disorders. For example, restless legs syndrome—a neurological condition in which a person has an uncomfortable sensation of needing to move his or her legs—can lead to insomnia. Patients with restless legs syndrome typically experience worse symptoms in the later part of the day, during periods of inactivity, and in the transition from wake to sleep, which means that falling asleep and staying asleep can be difficult. An estimated 10 percent of the population has restless legs syndrome.
Sleep apnea is another sleep disorder linked to insomnia. With sleep apnea, a person's airway becomes partially or completely obstructed during sleep, leading to pauses in breathing and a drop in oxygen levels. This causes a person to wake up briefly but repeatedly throughout the night. People with sleep apnea sometimes report experiencing insomnia.
If you have trouble sleeping on a regular basis, it's a good idea to review your health and think about whether any underlying medical issues or sleep disorders could be contributing to your sleep problems. In some cases, there are simple steps that can be taken to improve sleep ( down and trying to limit possible distractions, such as a TV, computer, or pets). While in other cases, it's important to talk to your doctor to figure out a course of action. You should not simply accept poor sleep as a way of life—talk to a  specialist for help.

6. Other causes of insomnia

1. Mental health disorders. Anxiety disorders, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, may disrupt your sleep. Awakening too early can be a sign of depression. Insomnia often occurs with other mental health disorders as well.

2. Stimulants that can disrupt sleep.
 gastroesophageal
Sleep-related disorders. Sleep apnea interrupting,
 Caffeine, nicotine and alcohol. Coffee, tea, cola and other caffeinated drinks are stimulants. Drinking them in the late afternoon or evening can keep you from falling asleep at night. Nicotine in tobacco products is another stimulant that can interfere with sleep. Alcohol may help you fall asleep, but it prevents deeper stages of sleep and often causes awakening in the middle of the night.

3. Eating oily /fatty foodslate, gas forming foods like beans late can interfere with sleep and if it is done regularly, becomes a cause of insomnia.

4.  Lack of physical  exercise or too much exercise towards bedtime can disrupt sleep.  Exercise are best in the morning.  Strainous exercise toward evenings causes adrenal fatigue.

5. Not taking a break during the day especially during periods of intense physical stress can lead to loss of sleep at night.

6. Not taking good breakfast can lead to loss of sleep at night.  Do not joke with breakfast. Too much is bad, no breakfast is bad. The brain cells prepares it for sleep in the morning and daytime.

6. Other causes of insomnia

1. Mental health disorders. Anxiety disorders, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, may disrupt your sleep. Awakening too early can be a sign of depression. Insomnia often occurs with other mental health disorders as well.

2. Stimulants that can disrupt sleep.
 gastroesophageal
Sleep-related disorders. Sleep apnea interrupting,
 Caffeine, nicotine and alcohol. Coffee, tea, cola and other caffeinated drinks are stimulants. Drinking them in the late afternoon or evening can keep you from falling asleep at night. Nicotine in tobacco products is another stimulant that can interfere with sleep. Alcohol may help you fall asleep, but it prevents deeper stages of sleep and often causes awakening in the middle of the night.

3. Eating oily /fatty foodslate  gas forming foods like beans late can interfere with sleep and if it is done regularly, becomes a cause of insomnia.

4.  Lack of physical  exercise or too much exercise towards bedtime can disrupt sleep.  Exercise are best in the morning.  Strainous exercise toward evenings causes adrenal fatigue.

5. Not taking a break during the day especially during periods of intense physical stress can lead to loss of sleep at night.

6. Not taking good breakfast can lead to loss of sleep at night.  Do not joke with breakfast. Too much is bad, no breakfast is bad. The brain cells prepares it for sleep in the morning and daytime.

7.  Some medications that cause Insomnia

Some medications that may  cause Insomnia.

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (antidepressants such as Prozac® and Zoloft®
Dopamine agonists (includes some medications for Parkinson's disease)
Psychostimulants and amphetamines.
Anticonvulsants.
Cold medicines and decongestants.
Steroids.

8.  People at Risk of Insomnia
Certain people are actually  at risk of insomnia, they are mainly

1.  Elderly
2.  Menopausal women, this include post menopausal women.  Women genertally tend to suffer insomnia more than men.
3.  Those on certain     medication
4.  Those who does sedentary job
5.  Those deficient in nutrients that Supports sleep
6.  Those suffering emotional problems
7.  Those going through physical stress
8. Genetics may also play some role but research is yet to confirm this.

9. Effects of Insomnia may  include:

1.  Lower performance on the job or at school

2.  Slowed reaction time while driving and a higher risk of accidents

3. Mental health disorders, such as depression, an anxiety disorder or substance abuse

4. Increased risk and severity of long-term diseases or conditions, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, diabetes and worsening cases of all cases affecting your health negatively.

5.  Irritability, depression and anxiety, including panic attacks

Additionally. Sleep problems make it hard for our bodies to repair, detoxify, lose weight, balance blood sugar, and digest. Studies have also shown inadequate sleep lowers natural killer cells, which are the immune cells that fight cancer. One study suggests that our ability to fight viruses like the common cold decreases 300% when we get less than seven hours of sleep.

6. Lack of Sleep Ages Your Skin
Most people have experienced sallow skin and puffy eyes after a few nights of missed sleep. But it turns out that chronic sleep loss can lead to lackluster skin, fine lines, and dark circles under the eyes .
When you don’t get enough sleep, your body releases more of the stress hormone cortisol. In excess amounts, cortisol can break down skin
collagen , the protein that keeps skin smooth and elastic.

10.  Natural foods that helps you sleep:

Grains,
rice,
barley,
oats)
Nuts and Seeds (walnuts, peanuts, sunflower seeds, mustard seeds, flaxseed)
Fatty fish
Eggs
Turkey
Chicken
Milk and other dairy including yoghurt
Honey
Cayenne pepper
Bell pepper
Millet
Soya

Fruits and vegetables includes: cherries, corn, asparagus, pomegranate, olives, grapes, broccoli, cucumber, watermelon)

A Handful of Nuts. Nuts are a good source of heart-healthy fats. And almonds and walnuts, specifically, contain melatonin, a hormone that helps to regulate your sleep/wake cycle. Eating them can increase your blood levels of the hormone, helping you sleep more soundly. 

11.  Vitamins and Nutrients that Helps you sleep

Vitamins and Nutrients Needed to help you sleep soundly:

There are four main vitamins and minerals that can be found in food that aid in promoting sleep:

1.Tryptophan
2 Magnesium
3.Calcium, and
4.B6. Some of these substances help the body produce melatonin, the hormone that is responsible for regulating your circadian rhythm (sleep/wake patterns). When you're close to bedtime, melatonin production naturally increases to help you sleep. In the morning when you're ready to wake up, melatonin production tapers off to allow you to be awake and alert for the day.

Some foods are naturally packed with these essential vitamins and minerals, and eating certain foods at certain times can help you tip the scales towards a successful night of quality sleep. Most of these are available as over-the-counter supplements, but like with most supplements, it's better to get them from the foods you eat than relying on supplement.

  Green, leafy vegetables, pumpkin seeds, edamame, bananas, avocados, beans, and nuts and seeds are all foods rich in magnesium, which helps muscles relax and induces a sleepy state.

Eat Magnesium-Rich Foods: The mineral magnesium is a natural sedative. Deficiency of magnesium can result in difficulty sleeping, constipation, muscle tremors or cramps, anxiety, irritability, and pain. Other foods rich in magnesium includes legumes and seeds, dark leafy green vegetables, wheat bran, almonds, cashews, whole grains.

12.   Food sources of Magnesium

They include:

Dark Chocolate.
Avocados. The avocado is an incredibly nutritious fruit and a tasty source of magnesium. ...
Nuts. Nuts are nutritious and tasty. ...
Legumes. Legumes are a family of nutrient-dense plants that include lentils, beans, chickpeas, peas and soybeans.
Seeds. ...
Whole Grains.
Some Fatty Fish.

13.   What about Tryptophan?

Tryptophan is an amino acid that is important for the production of serotonin in the body. It is also key to brain function and has a role in healthy sleep.
People cannot make tryptophan in their bodies, so must obtain it from their diet.
Fortunately, tryptophan can be found in food whereas serotonin cannot.

14.  Food Sources of, Tryptophan :

Cheese. Cheese is another great source of tryptophan.
Pineapples.
Tofu. ...
Salmon. ...
Nuts and seeds (flax, sesame, pumpkin, sunflower, cashews, peanuts, almonds, walnuts)
Bananas
Eggs, (not fried)

Oranges, lemons and other citrus are cool for dealing with insomnia only when  taken in moderation.

15.  Food Sources of calcium

1. Milk
2. Curd / Yogurt
3. Cheese
4. Seafood
5. Beans and lentils
6. Almonds
7. Whey Protein
8. Dark Green Leafy Vegetables
9. Figs
10. Soybean
11. Tofu
12. Soy Milk
13. Chia seeds
14. Broccoli
15. Fortified foods
16.  Millet


Note: Milk is one of the best and cheapest calcium sources.
A cup of cow's milk has 276–352 mg, depending on whether it's whole or non-fat milk. The calcium in dairy is also absorbed well

16.  Spices Rich in calcium

Fresh and dried basil. ...
Dried savory. ...
Dried marjoram, thyme, sage, rosemary, Celery seed & other spices including black pepper seeds.
Cinnamon.
Stinging nettle.

17.    What Is Vitamin B6?

Vitamin B6 is a water-soluble vitamin, meaning that the body doesn’t store it in large amounts. Any excess that the body doesn’t need is excreted in the urine. That’s why it is of great importance to consume foods rich in this nutrient every day. The term vitamin B6 actually covers six different compounds. The body converts them into the active forms of this vitamin – pyridoxal phosphate, which play vital roles in our body

18.  Vitamin B6 Benefits

This vitamin takes part in over 100 enzyme reactions, which are mostly related to protein metabolism. It also plays an important role in other metabolic processes involving amino acids, carbohydrates, and lipids.
Furthermore, vitamin B6 is involved in the production of hemoglobin, a protein which transports oxygen to our cells. If hemoglobin levels are low, our cells don’t get enough oxygen, and we are at risk of developing anemia. Vitamin B6 can be used for preventing and treating this blood disorder.

Another major function of this vitamin is to promote the production of neurotransmitters in the brain. Therefore, it is vital for healthy brain development. In addition to carrying signals from one neuron (nerve cell) to another, neurotransmitters contribute to the production of hormones influencing our mood and sleep cycle. Continue from next page























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