Considering we spend a third of our lives sleeping, it’s important we get it right so our waking hours are as satisfying and joyful as possible.
POWER OF SLEEP
Sleep is essential to detox and repair from the day. It has a direct impact on our physical and emotional health. Even the super-healthy produce internal pollution, called free radicals, which are created from the standard conversion of food into useable energy. Scientifically, this equates to free radical levels versus antioxidant levels. Sleep allows the body to restore a balance of power in favour of the anti-oxidants so you wake up each morning at the optimum balance. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the body has a 24-hour body energy clock allowing each organ its own time of regeneration. In Western medicine this is referred to as the body’s circadian rhythms. For example, if you wake up between 1-3am it is usually your liver and if it is between 3-5am it is usually your lungs. This doesn’t mean you are heading for liver or lung failure; it simply means that these organs need more attention and may require more nutrition to detox, repair or nourish them.
A LITTLE ON HORMONES
During our waking hours, the body burns glucose to provide energy married in with the release of stimulating hormones such as adrenaline. When we sleep these levels drop and the body produces its natural level of Human Growth Hormone (HGH), which many hale as the ‘anti-aging wonder’ hormone. Having the right amount of protein will allow your HGH levels to be at optimum, which is why plant based proteins are so important for you to get all the building blocks you need. Taking our NOURISHING PROTEIN before bed will give you all you need for tissue repair both internally and externally and stop the desire to reach for late night chocolate fixes.
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Understanding why we need our beauty sleep, how hormones affect our sleep patterns and can assist with getting a better nights rest, Dr Laubscher explains.
WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING
Even though we may look like we are having a peaceful night’s sleep, our brain still remains very active. A typical night’s sleep comprises five different sleep cycles, each lasting around 80-90 minutes. The first four stages of each cycle are regarded as quiet sleep or Non- Rapid Eye Movement (NREM). The final stage is denoted by Rapid Eye Movement (REM). As stage two merges into stage three, the brain waves continue to deepen into large slow waves. The larger and slower the brain wave, the deeper the sleep. Stage four is reached when 50% of the waves slow down. REM sleep is thought to help consolidate memory and emotion.
BEAUTY SLEEP: IT’S A THING
The outer or top layer of our skin comprises tightly packed dead skin cells, which are constantly shed throughout the day. During deep sleep, the skin’s metabolic rate speeds up and many of the body’s cells show increased production and reduced breakdown of proteins. This is a good thing as protein is the essential building blocks for cell growth - the skin needs this deep sleep each night to repair itself.