Monday, April 12, 2021

ADVERTISING: Advertorial — How to reap deep sleep: Part II

by HOLLY CARLING/Vital Health
| April 7, 2021 1:00 AM

In Part I, we discussed the physical and functional hazards of inadequate sleep. In this second part, we will address how to reap deep sleep. For some, falling asleep quickly and easily comes without fanfare, while others take hours to fall asleep. Another issue is waking once or more during the night, then not being able to return to sleep. Many seem to get adequate sleep but fail to feel refreshed in the morning. All of these sleep issues are different, and therefore have different remedies. But there are some constants that everyone can do.

First, create a nighttime routine that supports healthy sleep. Dim the lights in the house at least two hours before bed, allowing the pineal gland to begin to release melatonin. Melatonin is a hormone that is only released when dark. It is said that even LED lights in your room can inhibit the release of melatonin. Sit in your room when dark and look for any light sources. Power cords, alarm clocks, electronics lights, smoke alarms, etc. Can interfere with proper melatonin production. In addition to creating the circadian rhythm of the brain, melatonin is important in regulating women’s menstruation cycle and reproduction and instrumental in regulating body weight and energy balance.

Many choose to add melatonin or medicate for sleep and are happy they do, but many don’t see that as a viable option for them for one reason or another. I am not a proponent of melatonin therapy because, instead of giving the pineal gland a free ride, I would prefer to find out WHY it isn’t producing enough melatonin, if that is the issue, and address that. Treating the underlying cause is invariably better than just supplanting a function with a close relative, but not exactly the same as your own hormones.

There are many bedtime routines that can be helpful in encouraging sleep. There is also some “don’t do this” advice. Put your media to bed at least two hours before retiring. Even then, wear blue-light blocking glasses as the blue light can adversely affect sleep. Don’t eat sugar, sugary drinks, alcohol or coffee any time after 2 p.m. Even though some believe alcohol helps their sleep, the quality is not good, so the sleep deprivation continues.

While eating carbs before bed is not good for sleep, eating extra protein is — but not a lot. Just a chunk — like a mini chicken wing or drumstick size. Protein is very stabilizing to the blood sugar, an imbalance of which contributes to waking in the middle of the night unable to return to sleep. Too much food results in the body busily digesting instead of resting. As with all things in life, balance is key.

I have so much more I’d like to share with you to help you to sleep better! To reap the benefits of deep sleep, join us for tonight’s webinar, "7 Secrets to Getting to Sleep, Staying Asleep and Waking Refreshed," 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 14. Register here: or visit our website at for more information about this and other upcoming health classes.

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Holly Carling is a Doctor of Oriental Medicine, Licensed Acupuncturist, Doctor of Naturopathy, Clinical Nutritionist and Master Herbologist with over four decades of experience. Carling is a “Health Detective.” She looks beyond your symptom picture and investigates WHY you are experiencing your symptoms in the first place. Carling is currently accepting new patients and offers natural health care services and whole food nutritional supplements in her Coeur d’Alene clinic. Visit Carling’s website at to learn more about Carling, view a list of upcoming health classes and read other informative articles. Carling can be reached at 208-765-1994 and would be happy to answer any questions regarding this topic.