Dr. W. Gifford-Jones

Dr. W. Gifford-Jones

The Doctor Game

Advice on some common sleeping issues from Dr. W. Gifford-Jones.

How much Tiger is in your tank as you start the day? Not much, if you’ve been tossing and turning at night due to sleep apnea. Or, if your partner has shaken the foundation, with his or her snoring. Insomnia and snoring affect millions of North Americans and can be associated with serious health problems. Now, a natural remedy, “Bell Sound Sleep,” helps these troubling problems.

You’re in excellent company if you suffer from insomnia. Napoleon, Sir Isaac Newton, Winston Churchill and Thomas Edison all tried to count sheep without success. Others, such as Marilyn Monroe, used increasing amounts of prescription sleeping pills, with tragic results.

Sleep deprivation can also have far-reaching consequences for our environment. It’s believed to have been a factor in the crash and oil spill by both the Exon Valdez and the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.

So how many hours of sleep do we need? Alexander The Great won many battles because he needed little sleep and could “cat nap”. But most people require seven to eight hours to function well.

Researchers believe sleep allows the body to prepare itself for another day. If this doesn’t happen due to chronic insomnia, the risk of a number of health problems is increased.

For instance, the Nurses Health Study at The Harvard Medical School followed 70,000 nurses for 10 years to determine what, if any, medical conditions resulted from insomnia. This showed that women who slept for 5 hours had a 39 percent increased risk of heart attack, compared to those who had 8 hours of sleep.

Sleep apnea, in which breathing temporarily stops several times during the night, poses other problems. During these episodes a decreased amount of oxygen reaches the brain triggering increased blood pressure and a more rapid heart rate. If this occurs night after night the risk of heart attack and stroke rises.

Insomnia also has an impact on today’s epidemic of diabetes. University of Chicago researchers required a group of young men to sleep just 4 hours a night. This caused an increase in blood sugar, a decrease in the hormone insulin, and a 40 percent decrease in the rate sugar was removed from the blood.

Sleep debt also increases the appetite and food consumption. It’s believed that the hormone leptin gives us a good feeling when we’ve had sufficient food. But insomnia decreases the amount of leptin causing a craving for food, particularly carbohydrates.

Studies done at the University of California show that tossing and turning at night also puts the immune system at risk. Researchers found that healthy men, deprived of partial sleep for just one night, have a less effective immune system the following day.  Their natural killer cells to fight infections and cancer were compromised.

So what’s the best treatment for insomnia? Napoleon believed he could sleep only if his feet were pointing south. W.C. Fields, the comedian, used to seek sleep in a barber’s chair, or on a pool table. U.S. President, Theodore Roosevelt, had a shot of cognac in a glass of milk, an improvement over a pool table. Still others need a warm bath before retiring, a cool room, staying up later or reading a book. And some resort to expensive pressurized masks attached to a machine. These are uncomfortable and cumbersome and many users learn to hate them.

The best approach to insomnia and snoring is to keep it simple, particularly since studies show that 45 percent of the population have this problem. It makes no sense to  take prescription drugs, when a natural product, “Bell Sound Sleep” is available.

“Bell Sound Sleep” is approved by Health Canada and contains melatonin, camomille, fleur de la passion, skulcap and valeriane, all natural ingredients, is inexpensive and can be obtained in most health food stores in Canada and the U.S. Or from www.belllifestyleproducts.com. The suggested dosage is 4 capsules initially. This can be reduced to 3 or 2 capsules as sleeping habits improve.

Don’t forget that silence at night will change your life and that of your partner. Besides a capsule is better than sleeping in a barber’s chair or on a pool table.

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