"If we want to reach a level where we can teach others, we must first learn to listen to others."
Do you listen to others? I know I do, and I really have to--especially when it comes to my patients. I have a tendency of sometimes not listening to loved ones, especially Rick and often my children. I am so overstimulated during the day, that before I engage in personal conversation I have to meditate and slow down my mind. Did you ever call a friend with a problem, but first ask how he/she is doing and 15 minutes later you are still on their issues, but you actually called for yourself? Once you ask someone how he/she is doing - you should tell he/she why you called. Or better yet, do not ask how he/she is doing until you tell he/she why you are calling. We all need to listen more. I cannot teach lifestyle changes to anyone, if I first do not listen to their complaints. I also must ask everyone about their life- do they exercise, do they meditate, do they have a hobby, et al. As I am fond of saying and have said before in this blog, "Take the cotton out of your ears and place it in your mouth and LISTEN."
Regular restful sleep is one of the most important components for maintaining health. If you have disrupted sleep it does not allow for proper digestion or sufficient time to make new hormones and chemical messengers (neurotransmitters) which are essential to our well being. We need these neurotransmitters to wake up with energy. Do you wake up tired? I used to! No longer.
We do know that inadequate sleep has been proven to decrease work performance, alertness, memory and cognitive function and put stress on your relationships (personal and professional). Lack of sleep decreases your quality of life. Do you want that?
A study has shown that a decrease in sleep by one and half hours will result in a decrease of daytime alertness by 32%. Wow!
A large cohort study of more than 3500 patients ages 35 and over found that the optimal sleep duration of 7 - 8 hours could predict better health outcomes.
There are many remedies for sleep- conventional prescriptions as well as botanical. There are also vitamins/supplements that have been used as remedies to sleep. Some of these supplements include theanine, and sub lingual melatonin. Homeopathic remedies like HEEL- Nerviheel and Neuroxtan (available at http://www.longevitynutritionals.com/ ) are excellent. The Bach remedy called Rescue Remedy is another valuable sleep agent. Herbal Vitality has a tincture called Sleep Formula which is useful. You must find the proper sleeping agent for you if you have difficulty.
I could describe many botanicals used in the Herbal Vitality mixture, but I want to mention two botanicals that I am fond of for sleeping.
One is Passion Flower (Passiflora incarnata). The alkalids and flavinoids in Passion flower are stronger sedatives and relaxants than other botanicals. It has the ability to restore debilitated nerve centers by promoting proper nutrition uptake at a cellular level. It supports a calming and relaxing effect on the body during times of stress. Every person in New York City needs Passion Flower. The leaves and the vines contain the many alkaloids as harmaline, harmine etc . There are also lots of bioflavinoids such as quercitin, rutin etc in the plant. I love history of plants so this is no exception. It was first discovered in Peru in 1569 by a Spanish physician/botanist, Nicolas Monardes. In the 1800's it became popular with the Victorians of England.
The second botanical is Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora ) It has a relaxing and calming effect on the body. I like Skullcap because I find it can be used during the day to restore balance to an overworked individual. This is me. I utilize skullcap daily during the work day. I feel rested. It does not put me to sleep, but restore my energy and balance during the day and then I get a better restful sleep at night. This plant is a nervine and has plenty of flavinoids, ligans, and tannins. The best known flavinoid is appropriately called scutellarin.