- Normal sleep is characterized by a general decrease in digestion, body temperature, blood pressure, breathing rate, and a majority of other important bodily functions except for brain activity, which can increase during sleep.
- It is estimated that nearly 40% of the adult population in the United States is sleep deprived and is suffering from negative health consequences as a result of sleep problems like impaired performance, mood swings and irritability as well as a lack of focus.
- A lack of sleep has also been linked with increased blood pressure and high cholesterol as well as worsening just about every other major risk factor in heart disease including perhaps most importantly inflammation.
The Treatment of Sleep Disorders
- Exercise, healthy eating and stress management can do wonders for eliminating the negative effects of sleep disorder and restoring a person to a positive sleep cycle.
- Most sleeping pills fall into the category of “sedative hypnotics” which are a specific class of drugs used to induce and/or extend sleep. Sedative hypnotics include benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and various hypnotics and should only be used as short term solutions to sleep problems as they are potentially addictive and carry with them a wide range of negative side effects.
- When lifestyle changes don’t fix sleeping problems, try 2 grams of Gamma Aminobutyric Acid (GABA), a natural nutrient that increases deep, restful sleep and dreaming. Pure Chemistry has a liquid GABA product called Night Cap and pure GABA powder called Formula Z Slim.
Most sleeping pills fall into the category of “sedative hypnotics” which are a specific class of drugs used to induce and/or extend sleep. Sedative hypnotics include benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and various hypnotics. Let’s look at each class individually.
Benzodiazepines are known as anti-anxiety medications and include Xanax, Valium, Ativan, and Librium. Benzodiazepines also create drowsiness thereby helping people sleep. While these drugs may be useful to some people losing sleep due to anxiety, they should be very short-term solutions as all benzodiazepines can be considered highly addictive.
Barbiturates depress the central nervous system often creating profound sedation. Barbiturates can be prescribed as sedatives or sleeping pills, but more common, these hypnotic drugs are used as anesthesia.
Finally, when sleep problems continue, there are natural products that can help. Many people try melatonin but we are not supporters of this product as effective dosages are hard to manage on a daily basis and if Melatonin helps, normally, there is residual grogginess for quite a few hours.
Second is the amino acid Threonine, which promotes relaxation. While helpful, we have rarely ever seen it profoundly impact sleep disorders.
Finally, and best by far, is the natural amino compound GABA which is short for Gamma Aminobutyric Acid. GABA is a natural nutrient that acts as a neurotransmitter in the brain and increases deep, restful sleep as well as dreaming. As little as 2 grams of GABA a night can eliminate sleep deprivation in as many as 9 of 10 sleep challenged people. Pure Chemistry sells a liquid GABA product called Night Cap and a pure GABA powder called Formula Z Slim. In addition to improving sleep, GABA is also considered to be one of the strongest natural anti-aging compounds which makes perfect sense since sleep and aging are so very much related.