If you don’t think sleep is important try not having it and you’ll realize just how critical sleep is! I have 3 kids, so trust me, I have had my fair share of sleepless nights and not only is the next day a train wreck but so are the next few days!
If you are an active person or a runner, the demands on your body are harder. Therefore, you NEED to sleep harder and replenish even harder!
Obviously, there are many factors that can interrupt one’s sleep resulting in a variety of treatment options. As part of your comprehensive health assessment, I determine which treatment protocols will best help you hit the hay! Here are my top three supplements to support a good quality sleep:
For myself, it is worry. If I am going to have a restless night, its because my mind simply won’t shut off. Rhodiola is a plant that can help turn off that endless train of thoughts that come once the sun goes down. Rhodiola is most commonly used for increasing energy, endurance, strength, and mental capacity. Because of its affects on your musculoskeletal system, I often use it to help the performance of runners and active people. To assess how excessive worry and anxiety might be affecting your sleep, I use an in-office stress test. If the results are high, it may encourage the release of hormones that keep you awake. Rhodiola helps your body adapt to these hormones allowing the anxiety to ease and you to get a restful night’s sleep.
Difficulty Falling Asleep
Melatonin is a hormone that plays a role in your natural sleep-wake cycle. If you have difficulty falling asleep, melatonin can be used to help ease you to sleep and keep you asleep. Shift workers are at particular risk of having low levels of melatonin which can make it hard to fall asleep because of the disruption in their sleep-wake cycle patterns. High levels of stress can also affect how we are sleeping. When we are stressed, we release high levels of cortisol that can interrupt melatonin production in turn keeping you awake at night. If you are not sleeping, you are not recovering. This will impact your ability to perform. With my patients, I use functional testing to assess how melatonin and cortisol levels are interacting with your hormones. This provides us with the underlying causes to your poor-quality sleep and helps personalize your treatment protocols, getting you the results you need faster.
Sore Muscles Keeping You Up
If sore muscles are keeping you awake, this may be a sign you need more magnesium. Magnesium is used in 300 different reactions in your body and is a nutrient I find many are deficient in, especially runners who are suffering from calf cramps. It is a natural muscle relaxant that can help your body chill out after a tough day at the office or gym and fall asleep faster. There are many different forms of magnesium. To determine which is the best form for you, ask your Naturopathic Doctor.
According to the studies, you need a minimum of six hours of sleep to function. Our lives involve more stress than they use to, therefore I believe you need more sleep for optimal recovery. To maximize your potential, this week’s goal is to aim for 7-9 hours of sleep every day.
Sleep is an important part of our lifestyle. I am here to help you make informed decisions to improve your health and wellness. Link in bio to book your appointment today.
Still not convinced sleep is the key to a great work out, tons of energy and success? Check out how sleep is affecting your game and just how much sleep pro-athletes are getting.
Do not start any supplement protocol with out the advice of a professional.
Dr. Jennifer Tanner, has a broad, evidence-based practice with a focus on sports and performance-based medicine. Being a marathon runner and having been a competitive equestrian, an active lifestyle is important. Dr. Tanner uses a variety of tools including Acupuncture and Clinical Nutrition, putting an emphasis on “food as medicine” and addressing the root causes of inflammation. In conjunction with the Integrative Health team, Dr. Tanner is thrilled to help people achieve an optimal state of health and pursue their performance based health goals!