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SLEEP - Why It Belongs at the Top  of Your Priority List

When you're trying to squeeze more time into your day, do you cut your sleep time? 
Here's why that's a really bad idea...

The Nourishing Company

Volume VI   # 88  Copyright 2014        All Rights Reserved
Note:   If you have a topic you'd like covered, let us know at

ots of people think sleep is a waste of time.  After all, there’s nothing going on, right?  All those hours lying down in the dark when you could be up doing things!  Here’s why that’s not just wrong-headed, but dangerous to set in motion.

During sleep, it isn’t that nothing’s going on.  In fact, a lot is going on!  It’s not that you go from your body’s priority list during activity to no priority list at all during sleep. Instead, sleep signals a switch from the activities that take precedence during your day, to those that become dominant at night.

During sleep, your body activates all the "rest-and-digest" or "feed and breed" activities that cannot take place when you’re in an active mode.  During restful sleep, all those resources that were shunted into activity are now devoted to these other functions.

This is carried out via two aspects of your automatic system that activate certain endocrine glands and inhibit others.  In the day or active mode, it galvanizes your muscular system and ability to respond physically. 

During the night, or sleep mode, its agenda makes as a priority cleaning up and repairing. Some examples?  Your body builds bone at night, repairs muscle, cleans up debris, fights infections, removes toxins, generates new cells.

If your automatic nervous system doesn’t make that switch, and stay in that mode long enough, ultimately you will weaken and then burn out your pituitary (or master) gland, your thyroid, your adrenals and also your gonads. 

 Fail to give enough time to this second agenda, and you and your body become completely overwhelmed to the point where various functions begin to fail.  While you continue to do, do, do, instead of do and then rest and repair, your physical state only worsens.  It’s the kind of doing that ultimately results in an early grave with an extremely unpleasant journey on the way.

Your body requires even longer periods of rest-recover-heal-rebuild mode in situations such as recovering from physical or emotional shock or trauma, including childbirth, because these are times when your body has a much larger list of recover-repair work to do than a mere night or so of sleep can accomplish.

Your Body’s Priority List During Sleep

The activities that take place while you sleep are functions that do not require quick responses as do those managed by your active-during-the-day (or sympathetic nervous system) agenda.

Your rest-recover-heal (or parasympathetic mode) activates the following five of your bodily systems:

     1. stomach,
     2. liver,
     3. intestinal tract,
     4. pancreas and
     5. bronchial muscles.

Meanwhile, this parasympathetic priority list also inhibits these five glands:

     1. adrenals,
     2. pituitary,
     3. heart,
     4. thyroid and
     5. ovaries. 
Why Can’t You Sleep?

The following are the most likely factors that produce a chronic inability to sleep:

• Food allergies;
• Heavy metals;
• Petroleum solvents;
• Immune Challenges: 
      Lyme vectors and co-factors,
      mold, etc.
• Physical toxicity;
• EMF exposure (wi-fi, cell phones, smart meters, microwave ovens, etc.)
• Scars;
• Alignment problems (all joints);
• Autoimmune challenges;
• Dental problems;
• Emotional issues.
• Drugs that stimulate your sympathetic system or inhibit your parasympathetic system (an online search under those terms will reveal which ones do this).

Promoting Restful Sleep

Here are some helpful pointers to promote a good night’s sleep:
• Avoid your main food intolerances; they are the chief producers of sympathetic dominance, which is the opposite autonomic nerve mode to be in for healing sleep.
• Don’t consume stimulants in the mid to late afternoon. Instead  drink calming herbal teas (chamomile or lemon balm are two such examples that soothe nerves) or peppermint to aid digestion.
• Increase your intake of alkaline-ash minerals, as these will help slow things down, especially if your body feels like its racing. Potassium, iodine, kelp, calcium, magnesium, and vitamin D are some examples.  Rich food sources include apricots, orange juice, bananas, dates, raisins, potatoes and yams.
• Avoid excessive sugar use – this is always a good idea for many reasons, but in terms of sleep, sugar is a primary cause of potassium depletion.
• Avoid using diuretics and blood pressure medications whenever possible, as these also deplete potassium.
This information was exerpted from the Natural Female Hormone Care series. For more information, and to receive a free female hormone self-assessment questionnaire, go to

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