Dr’s Anton’s advice for better sleep

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  • Ensure lots of blue/white light (natural light outside) exposure as soon as possible after waking up. Ideally walk outside for 10 minutes barefoot on grass for grounding for bonus points (see general recommendation handout).

  • The more of this natural light exposure you can get throughout day & in particular before noon the better you sleep hormone section that night. 
    • • Equally important is to start to reduce your exposure to blue light exposure (all artificial lights and device screens – smart phones, tablets, computers, TVs) after sundown & definitely in the 2-3 hours before bed – if not you brain won’t secrete melatonin and stop secreting cortisol. o Options for this are replacing house lights with red light & avoiding all screens which is difficult 
    • Install blue light blocking software on devices e.g. F.lux or Iris apps 
    • Use blue light blocking glasses to block blue light from houselights, TV etc… Recommended brands at various price points to search for online (these have been assessed by others for quality & I have no vested financial interests): ▪ Cyxus 
    • Blublox 
    • Gunnar 
    • Felix Gray 
    • Stop eating altogether 2 -3 hours before bed. If your body is still busy metabolizing food during sleep it disturbs sleep quality, recovery etc… This concept links to “Time Restricted Eating” and is covered in the Circadian Code book recommended (where you complete all your eating for the day within 8-12 hours of the day – closer to 8hrs is better but significant benefit just from 12hrs). This does not entail reducing the amount of calories/food you eat just the timing. This has various benefits including circadian rhythm and metabolic function with a host of improvement seen in studies. An easy way to get his started which helps with sleep quality is to avoid caffeine & eating for the 1st hour after you wake up to allow a normal increase in cortisol and drop in melatonin.
  • hormone levels and then as above avoid eating 3 hours before planned sleep – this already reduces the average eating window to 12 hours. 

  • Avoid caffeine after 12h00. 

  • Normal sleep biology requires a reduction in body temperature at the start of sleep dropping to our lowest body temperature around 4 am so avoiding higher body temperature that will disrupt sleep is very important and the following can aid: o Hot bath with Epson salts before bed to increase temperature drop afterwards & Mg in salts is sedative.
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  • Maintain the room temperature around 18 degrees – should feel slightly cold. 

  • A more expensive but effective option is a ChiliPAD and OOLER if you & your sleep partner have different preferred bed temperatures to customize the temperature on your side of the bed.
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  • Read fiction rather than non-fiction & avoid social networking apps in bed. 

  • Ensure complete blackout – cover any LED lights or wear a sleep hood/mask (recommended options are “nite hood” & “Alaska bear”) if no black out blinds. 

  • Keep devices on airplane mode & switch off wifi routers – avoids EMF exposure overnight which has been shown to reduce deep sleep along with possibly affecting mitochondrial function (see general recommendation handout). 

  • Use breathing techniques & meditation techniques described in the Stress Handout & in particular the 4-7-8 breathing technique (or box breathing – see stress handout) to get to sleep (sleep latency) but also to get back to sleep if you wake up during the night. See https://www.drweil.com/videos-features/videos/the-4-7-8-breath-health-benefits-demonstration/ for a full description & the progressive relaxation techniques (I can provide a guide on this if requested).
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  • Avoid sleeping tablets & alcohol instead try chamomile & reishi tea & scents (lavender essential oil on the pillow) 

Article By Dr Anton Krige MBChB DIMC FRCA FFICM AFMCP

https://www.bestyou-functionalhealthclinic.co.uk/about.html

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Dr’s Anton’s advice for better sleep

Ensure lots of blue/white light (natural light outside) exposure as soon as possible after waking up. Ideally walk outside for 10 minutes barefoot on grass

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