10 Restorative Sleep Tips

Always tired?

Sleep deprivation is such a chronic condition these days that you might not even realize you suffer from it.

Try these sleep tips.

1. Create a sleep sanctuary. Sleep in complete darkness or as closely to possible.  Turn off all electronics in your room and preferably, unplug them so their electromagnetic field turns off as well.

The smallest bit of ambient can disrupt your bodies internal clock and your pineal gland’s production of melatonin (the hormone that regulates circadian rhythms) and serotonin (the feel good hormone).

2.  Get blackout drapes.  This is building on sleep tip number one, but it’s extremely important in the modern world because we’re up later than ever because of technology, computers, TV, etc. causing us to wake up later in the morning than we normally would.

By having blackout drapes we can prevent the bits of sunlight sneaking through your windows then passing directly through our optic nerve to your hypothalamus, which controls your biological clock.

This ambient light signals your brain that it’s time to wake up which kills your melatonin production which needs to be consolidated, concentrated, and high at night.

When you lower your melatonin secretion at night, and you’re exposed to unnatural florescent indoor lighting at day, it allows melatonin to be continually secreted during the day making you tired.  This bad cycle further lowers the production of melatonin at night.  Studies show that women who have light on at night have significantly higher rates of breast cancer.

In the morning, you want to have really bright natural light to stop the melatonin production, so that your serotonin production and other hormones get produced more naturally and effectively.  When you have low levels of serotonin, you feel lousy.  It’s all about balancing the hormones: natural light during the day and complete darkness during the day.

3.  Turn off your cell phone!  Or, at least turn on the Airplane Mode function.                            This is one of my tips that I consistently get positive feedback from.  It gives you piece of mind! No one needs to contact you in the middle of the night.

Respect your need for a full deep, restorative sleep.  Turning your phone on Airplane Mode dramatically decreases the biological clock disturbing EMF’s by cutting off your phones connection to cellphone towers and WiFi connections.

Most of us iPhone users need a full charge at night to have the battery last a full day.  Make sure you have your phone charging away from your head by having it plugged in on the other side of the room from where you’re sleeping, not on your nightstand no matter how conveniently placed it may be.

4.  Remove your alarm clock/cellphone from view. It will only add to your worry when you stare at it all night.  3am…4am…5am…quit stressing out!  The tiniest glow even from an alarm clock can disrupt your melatonin secretion. Go to sleep!

5.  Supplement with high quality Melatonin.  High quality is the key here.  There are tons of sleepaids and different melatonin products on the markets.  I don’t like most of them for a variety of reasons.

In the pill form they are often bound with nasty excipients like animal-based fillers like Magnesium Sterate or the gritty Calcium Carbonate which is rough on the joints and creates arterial plague.

I also find that taking something right before bed in the pill form is difficult because you have to find some water to swallow with it, then you have to pee because of drinking before bed!

The melatonin product that comes highly recommended from myself and my mother is Mercola’s Sleep Support Spray which has a tasty proprietary neuro blend of GABA (reduces excessive brain activity), L-Theanine (the calming green tea chemical), L-Tryptophan (source material for sleep hormone conversion), and Melatonin (the hormone that regulates circadian rhythms).

Melatonin actually breaks down bad estrogen.  Insomnia has A LOT to do with bad estrogen.

L-Tryptophan to 5-HTP to Serotonin conversion

6. Increase L-tryptophan in your diet!  L-tryptophan is needed for your melatonin and serotonin production.  You always want the source material.  Not a synthetic derivative.  L-trytophan breaks down into the other hormones listed above.  Important Feral Health Gem!  L-tryptopahn is the the most heat sensitive amino acid so you can only get it from RAW protein in your diet. 

Foods highest in L-tryptophan that should be eaten RAW are eggs, spirulina, cheese, meat, and fish.

So find that RAW protein that works for you.  If you’re a vegan try spirulina, chlorella, and hempseed.

If your leanings are vegetarian go for RAW cheeses and milk products from grass-fed animals.  Since most people are averse to RAW eggs, I’m not, grass-fed dairy products are super important.

7.  Rule: The less you eat the more you need to sleep.  The more you eat the more you need to sleep.  After dinner in the evening, you aren’t hungry.  You’re thirsty!  Drink a calming and grounding gynostemma based tea with Duanwood Reishi Mushroom extract and Pearl Powder.

Avoid before-bed snacks, particularly grains and sugars. These will raise your blood sugar and delay sleep. Later, when blood sugar drops too low (hypoglycemia), you may wake up and be unable to fall back asleep.

Do you eat lots of carbohydrates and sugars at night, get super hyperactive, take a while to fall asleep, then you wake bloated, puffy, inflamed, and groggy in the morning? This is candida becoming systemic.  This sets up chronic fatigue where no matter how long you sleep, you never feel rested.  If this is your case, you have to read the The Body Ecology Diet by Donna Gates.

8. Wear socks to bed. Feet often feel cold before the rest of the body because they have the poorest circulation. A study has shown that wearing socks to bed reduces night waking.
9.  Read by candlelight.  Like it’s 1776! This is a great way to really chill your brain out with some uplifting reading before bed.  It’s really fun to follow the flickering light along your page.

Beeswax candles put off a golden light that makes everyone look better than they look in regular white light.

Candlelight is way dimmer than nightlights which helps the transition to closing your eyes and falling asleep be easier.

10.  Exercise.  What doesn’t exercise help, anyway?  When you exert yourself physically you begin to honor your body’s need for restoration.  You sleep earlier so that you can perform better the next day.  It’s a positive feedback loop.

Goal Setting Technology

When you set a goal, you get a goal. 

Have you ever had a troubling task on your mind that you keep putting off and off until one day you write it on your list of to-do’s, then somehow you miraculously get the courage to accomplish it?

That is the power of goal setting technology that has always fascinated me.  I say “technology” because there are special tricks and tools to getting the most out of your goals and life.

There are so many options and directions you can take your life every second, minute, and day.  I can easily rest, watch TV, or go out an exercise at anytime of the day without ever accomplishing anything of significance all day long.

Without writing down what you want to see manifest in your life you will get whatever comes to you, or just what other people want.  That is ambitionless and ineffective thinking.

Imagine you are sitting down at a restaurant.  The waiter comes to your table and asks you what you want.  But you don’t know.  Hours pass while you are still at the table without an idea of what you want off the menu.  So right before the restaurant closes, the waiter comes back to the table and gives you a plate of spoiled food that they would have given to the dogs.  You didn’t order properly.

Without firmly ordering off the menu of the universe, you will be sent whatever.  The universe doesn’t know what you want in your life because you haven’t ordered properly. Writing out a goal tells the universe what you want so that it starts lining up synchronicities for you.

When you ink it, you think it

The real battle in goal setting, which I find utterly fascinating, is the fight in actually writing the goal of what you want.  Writing it on a sheet of paper is a five-second process.  Yet, you know the second you write it down and acknowledge it as something you want in your life; the universe will start lining up synchronicities for you.  Things will start falling into place.

One of my favorite David Wolfe-isms is his “Have the Best Day Ever”.  What he and others who constantly use “best ever” to describe things are actually doing is utilizing a goal setting technology.

Let’s say someone likes gardening.  They want to have a good garden.  So they right down the goal on a sheet of paper saying, “I want to have a good garden this year.”  Unfortunately, that goal is selling the potential of the garden short.

Instead, if you take the goal and flip it over so that the universe decides what level that goal is going to reach, not just a “good” garden—but “I have the Best Garden Ever”, then a magical power is evoked.  It takes the control out of you, and places it on the creator to discover what the best garden ever actually is.  Ever has the infinite potential no other word has!

We don’t know what the best garden ever is.  Maybe after writing that down and internalizing it you might come across free manure and stellar sunshine all summer!

When you believe it, you achieve it

Another helpful trick with goal setting is to write them in the present.  I have a word file titled, “The Best Goals Ever”.  See! I’m already blessing my goals as the best ever.  Here are examples of my goals written in the present, don’t laugh, at least not that much. “I eat the best food ever”  “I drink the best water ever”  “I have the best friends ever” I have the best relationships ever”  “I have the best communication ever” It can even be as silly yet effective as “I play the best NBA 2K11 ever”.

Where attention goes, energy flows

Goal setting allows us to drive energy into what we want instead of what we think we want.   What you want want’s you, and is rushing to meet you!  If you look back at your life, you will see that it fits together like a really good novel.  You are a superhero.  You can start writing your own novel the way you want it to unfold by creating goals (kind of like the titles of chapters in a book) that become your future.  The universe responds to this and will decide in ways you can’t predict.  It gets you out of your mind, into your being.  This puts you in the now, the eternal flow.  The universe is like a pin ball machine.  It has little favorable blocks and accelerators that will guide you on the path towards your unlimited potential.

The Best Time Ever is Now!

When I wake up in the morning I write down what I can remember from my dreams, then review my printed list of goals and read them out loud.  This really gives focus and drive to my mornings.  Next, when I get to my desk after a glass of cold spring water, I write down my daily to-do list on my pocket notepad.  Utilizing another goal setting trick, I title this list, “Things I am going to do”.  It’s amazing how this allows a level of confidence to beat even the most unpleasant tasks like shaving.

I have one last little goal setting tid-bit for you cell phone users.  I have this alarm set for 4:55 P.M. everyday that is titled: “Do it now, Do it now, Do it now”.  This is a technique made famous by personal development expert Steve Palina.  He says, “Whenever you feel the tendency towards laziness taking over and you remember something you should be doing, stop and say out loud, “Do it now!”  I don’t always want to clean my room, but if I get the little text message and beep at 4:55 PM. Which is a time I seem to not be very busy at I just change tasks and do something productive that I had been meaning to do.  Do it now is also good to repeat and repeat when you have to make an unpleasant phone call.  The best time to tell someone you can’t go to dinner is right now.  The best time is always now.  The best time is always today.  Tomorrow will never come.  All we have is today.  This moment.

Have the best day ever!

Earthing: Plugging Back Into the Earth’s Nourishing Electricity

The top two fitness trends of 2010 according to Outside Magazine were rather sensible ones: Paleolithic fitness and Barefoot Running. The less sensible trends, or completely insane, were the Shake-weight and Sketchers Shapeup shoes.

Many primal fitness enthusiasts are quick to tout the numerous physiological and muscular benefits of taking our flawlessly designed foot (more than 26 bones, 33 joints, and over a hundred tendons, ligaments, and muscles) out of the modern shoe’s rubber cast and returning it to the earth or with the help of some minimalist footwear like the Nike Frees or Vibram Five Fingers (Note: Do not wear to job interview as they do not make for the most impressive sartorial statement).

Natural selection over millions and millions of years didn’t come to the conclusion that the foot needed Nike. Each one of us has these astoundingly supple feet with intricate structures designed to keep us upright and moving gracefully. What they weren’t designed to do is operate bound up in thick, heavy artificial materials waddling back and forth trying to tone your fatass (Shape-ups). How the heck did our ancestors thrive for eons without the modern rubber soled shoes?

Christopher McDougal’s excellent New York Times Best Seller in 2009, Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen, is the great exposé on the physiological benefits of ditching shoes and running barefoot. He documents the reclusive Tarahumara Indians of Mexico’s rugged Copper Canyons who run barefoot or in flat leathered soles up to 100 miles a day.

Born to Run captures an important half of the picture: barefoot running is beneficial to health. Unfortunately, it misses such an obvious, elemental, and yet overlooked answer to why having a barefoot connection to the earth is so nourishing.

You may not know this, but below your feet is a planet alive with natural energies and subtle rhythmic pulsating frequencies. The Earth is actually a six sextillion (google that number) metric ton battery that is constantly being replenished by solar radiation, thousands of lightning strikes every minute, and heat from its molten core.

The best way to make sense of the Earth’s electrical power is to think of the Earth like the battery in your car. Parallel to how the car battery keeps the motor running and the wheels turning, the earth’s electrical rhythmic pulsations of natural energy flowing through the surface of the Earth keep the biological machinery of all life running in rhythm and balance.

Throughout the greater part human history, there was no way to not be physically touching the earth. We walked barefoot and slept on the ground with the skin of our bodies touching the earth, oblivious to the fact that they were conducting the earth’s nourishing electrical energy. I’ll touch on why this bare skin conductivity to the earth is so important in a moment.

The Electric You!

First, an extremely profound concept to grasp pertaining to electrical energy is that your body is electrical, before it is chemical. We live and function electrically on an electrical planet. The earth maintains our bodily frequencies like a conductor maintains the cadence of an orchestra. Your body is a complex communication where cells talk, organs talk, and organisms talk in a genuine electronic symphony.

Each of these cells and systems communicates using finely tuned bio-electrical transmitters and receivers which are tuned like a radio station. What happens when you expose the radio antenna to a significant amount of external noise? You get static from the noise–and that is exactly what is happening to your body in today’s electrosmog environment of cellphones, wi-fi, electronics, and power grids. Electromagnetic pollution has been linked to neurological disorders, chronic fatigue syndrome, and poor sleep/ insomnia.

In modern society we are smothered in electropollution. We put cellphones in our pockets not knowing they are frying our sperm count, we sleep with a lit alarm clock next to our heads when we sleep, and most of all we are physically disconnected from the earth!

The earth and the atmosphere are engaged in this dynamic battle of opposites. The earth is like the negative side of a battery as it produces a negatively charged electromagnetic field. The atmosphere, EMF’s, and other astrological forces are all the positively charged.

If you remember back to basic chemistry that electrons have a negative charge, neutrons have no charge, and protons are positively charged. The earth is actually a brimming reservoir of energetic free electrons. Now, to understand why free electrons are so important and why almost everyone is deficient in them, a quick lesson in conductivity is needed.

There are three types of materials used in electricity: Conductors, Semi-Conductors, and Insulators. Conductors allow the free flow of electricity, semi-conductors are the backbone of modern electronic equipment as their conductance can be controlled to conduct or not with the application of an electric field, and insulators which no current can flow through.

The Earth, just like you, is comprised of water and minerals, both excellent conductors of electricity. Throughout the vast majority of our time on earth we sleep on the ground or on conductive fur blankets and ran barefoot or in thin leather sandals that allowed us to connect to the earths negatively charged electricity.

The Disconnect

Somehow in our societal history, we managed to sever our previously omnipresent connection to the earth’s nourishing electric fields by entirely surrounding ourselves with insulators! Examples of common insulating materials include plastic, rubber, glass, and wood. No wonder most people are electron deficient! Your Nike’s you wear constantly have a thick rubber insulating sole and your 3 story house is made of dried wood!

Interestingly, the only time you are “grounded” in modern society is when you are showering! The metal pipes are in the ground and water is conductive. Ever wonder why you have all of your good ideas in the shower, or you figure out to solve the problem, or how the design of your book or paper is going to look just comes to you?

What about when you are on the beach and you jump into the water and you feel that rush from the water. Sure, some of the stress relieving effects of being at the beach in the water are that the beach is amazing and the water feels good, but that’s not the whole picture. That built up excess positive charge from all the EMF’s and other radiation that is destroying your wellbeing is pushed off of you at the speed of light. Anything at all that was bothering you before you jumped in the water, is insignificant.

One effect of Earthing, a term used interchangeably with grounding to describe the physical/electrical connection to the earth, is that your circadian rhythms, which regulate sleep-wake cycles and hormones, are instantly recalibrated to the earth’s natural frequencies and rhythms. The earth is a reference point for our circadian rhythms. Think of it like Greenwich Mean Time.

Vitamin G

In the same way that exposure to sunlight produces Vitamin D in the in the body, exposure to the ground provides an electrical “nutrient” in the form of free electrons. Since there is already a Vitamin E, I like to call Earthing Vitamin G, or Vitamin Ground.

Electrons are the most potent antioxidant known to man. Anytime you cut yourself, your body sends white blood cells to the injury. One of seven types of White blood cells is called Neutrophils. When Neutrophils are sent to the injury they secret what is called an oxidative burst which is basically a reactive oxygen species that are sometimes called “Free Radicals”. Now everyone has heard of Free Radicals! They are always on the sides of supplements and on advertisements or health articles.

Free Radicals are like little Pac-Man. They tear apart bacteria and damaged cells so that there is a space for healthy cells to move in and repair the tissues. That is what is known as the inflammatory response. When you cut yourself, it’s painful, it turns red, hot, and it swells. That’s the inflammatory response. But it turns out, interestingly, the inflammation is really an artifact caused by a lack of free electron reserves in the tissues!
The white blood cells, neutrophils, deliver to the free radicals to kill the bad cells, but what happens is those free radicals can leak into the surrounding tissue and damage healthy tissue! That’s the inflammation. That doesn’t have to be. If you have been grounding for a long time and have strong electron reserves, or have your feet on the ground after an injury, electrons will come in your body immediately neutralize the positively charged free radicals with the negatively charged free electrons!

The essence of grounding is that it protects your body from collateral damage. Damage that was not intended to take place but does because we have disconnected ourselves from the Earth by putting rubber on the bottom of our shoes and sleeping in ungrounded wooden houses. Grounding has immense benefits for athletes as it was used by Lance Armstrong’s Tour de France team as well as NFL Patrick Kerney as it helps them recover after athletic stress and perform better. So athletes, before your sporting event, stand barefoot on the earth for 10 minutes and witness the performance benefits.

I just mentioned how Vitamin G is the most potent antioxidant known to man and I’ll expound on that by relating to the common antioxidants that many people supplement with like Vitamin C. The way vitamins and antioxidants work is by transferring free electrons. Fascinatingly, once they are oxidized—for intance you forgot to seal the lid to the Vitamin C pills and they are become rancid from the exposure to oxygen—they become oxidized. What oxidation means, is that the Vitamin C no longer has the electron to donate, the electron is gone, and the Vitamin C doesn’t work!

Grounding Technology

Now if you made it this far, you are probably thinking, “Well, I like going barefoot and swimming at the beach, but other than that, the only other time I am grounding is in the shower. I live in a wooden house and my bedroom is on the 2nd floor.” Turns out, you can be grounded if you are on the second floor or on the 30th floor in a skyscraper in the city.

Every home in America is actually fitted with many grounding ports where you plug in your electronics. The ground port is the third circular prong that protects your electronics from shocks by sending them down into the earth where the metal ground rod is fitted into the ground. Every modern house in America has these in almost every room.

The Grounding Technology plugs a single prong into the ground port and carries the negative current and electrons to a conductive sheet or computer pad. You haven’t sleep until you’ve slept grounded. There are so many people struggling with sleep or feeling lethargic. I just know that they could be feeling so much better if they slept grounded! Anytime I am at my computer I have my feet under the grounding mat or have my mouse on the grounded computer pad that connects to the outlet in the wall.

The Grounding Revolution

I am all for iPhones, Laptops, and modern housing comforts. These technological and societal advancements need to be met with other natural technological advancements like grounding technology that return us to our electrical roots. Grounding technology allows you to live primal in the modern world. I don’t want to sleep outside in a sleeping bag in the backyard of my peri-urban home next to the busy street. With grounding technology I can bring the earth to my bed on the second floor. How revolutionary!

The best things in life are free. Sunlight, spring water, wild food, and now, the Earth! So get outside and be barefoot! Garden barefoot, exercise barefoot, and sleep grounded with the earth’s natural electricity and rhythms. Return to the Earth.

The 10 Principles of Feral Heatlh

  1. Eat Organic.  Shop at a natural foods Store.  Go to the farmer’s market.  Know your farmer.  Grow your own food.  Get inspired by real food with local flavor.
  2. Exercise with high intensity for short duration designed for HGH production and fat burning.
  3. Eliminate processed foods, rancid vegetable oils, refined sugars, wheat, pastas, grains, corn, gluten free baked goods, pasteurized dairy, and beer.
  4. Stabilize Blood Sugar with good fats. Replenish your muscles and brain with grass-fed meat, pastured egg proteins, and purified fish oils.
  5. Increase Vitamin D Levels with sunlight with large portions of skin exposure and make sure to get natural light through the eye to cease Melatonin production and increase the calming hormone Serotonin.
  6. Eat at least one fermented food a day.  When craving sweets, go sour.  Like sauerkraut, Kimchi, raw grass-fed yogurt/kefir, and artisanal raw cheeses.
  7. Feed the Immune System with Medicinal Mushrooms.  Build your Jing, Qi, and Shen by taking Chinese Tonic Herbs.
  8.  Load your body up with Green Juices and Chlorophyll.   Juicing is the most immediate access to the vitality and super health that is absolutely possible.  Chlorella is one of the greatest Superfoods known for heavy metal detoxification and protein content.
  9. Avoid environmental toxins from shampoos, body washes, deodorants, air fresheners, carpets, toxic mold, and laundry detergent.  Natural alternatives are available, although many of these are still toxic.  Be vigilant.
  10. Honor the body.  Respect your need to sleep.  Supplement with Melatonin Spray.  Meditate daily in which ever form you see fit.  Take time to yourself.  Avoid stress and limit EMF exposure.