The Sleep Conundrum

Happy Friday!! Its been a relatively calm week this week, all things considered, and that’s good news. The world has been a pretty wild and crazy place over the last few years. Stress and anxiety are pretty much constant companions these days and we are very grateful for the existence of cannabinoids. They offer us natural alternatives to synthetic pharmaceuticals that are used to treat anxiety, stress and depression.

When it comes to cannabinoids, most people are familiar with CBD. A lot of attention has been given to CBD and its health benefits in the media over the last two years. The top three reasons people use CBD are to treat pain, anxiety or sleep disorders.

We are going to take a closer look at these three issues starting with Sleep.

To Sleep, Perchance to Dream…

It is estimated that most of us will spend approximately one third of our lives sleeping. Sleep is arguably one of the most important of our basic bodily functions, ranking right up there with eating food and drinking water. In addition to giving our physical bodies a much needed rest, sleep helps us process emotions, it promotes memory consolidation and learning, increases cell regeneration, and boosts the immune system.

Healthy sleep patterns also help us to maintain a healthy weight, improve our ability to socialize and be more empathetic, help to reduce poor decision making/poor life choices,be sick less often, reduce risk of serious health problems like diabetes and heart disease.

Unhealthy sleeping patterns on the other hand, cause irritability, poor social relations, increased anxiety, an inability to focus and low energy. People who sleep poorly are also more prone to accidents (drowsy drivers cause thousands of car accidents every year), and are more likely to suffer from cognitive impairments such as poor memory and decreased motor skills.

Over the long term poor sleep can cause obesity, depression, lowered immunity and lower sex drive. Poor sleep can also contribute to higher blood pressure and poor mental health.

In short, sleep has a very direct and immediate impact on our lives. Good sleep helps us to be more active physically and mentally while strengthening our over-all health and immunity. Lack of sleep can cause poor health both mentally and physically. It can significantly reduce productivity and the ability to interact socially. It can also, *gasp*, make you look significantly older than you would  if you could just get a decent nights sleep.

How Much Sleep Do We Need?

For adults the healthy minimum is 7 hours. This is not going to hold true for everyone. We know people who swear by 6 hours a night. Others don’t feel normal if they don’t get a solid 8-9 hours a night. There is no ‘one size fits all solution’.

Here is a generally accepted guideline for optimal sleep time by age:

  • Older adults, 65+ years: 7 to 8 hours.
  • Adults, 26 to 64 years: 7 to 9 hours.
  • Young adults, 18 to 25 years: 7 to 9 hours.
  • Teenagers, 14 to 17 years: 8 to 10 hours.
  • School-age children, 6 to 13 years: 9 to 11 hours.
  • Preschool children, 3 to 5 years: 10 to 13 hours.
  • Toddlers, 1 to 2 years: 11 to 14 hours.
  • Infants, 4 to 11 months: 12 to 15 hours.
  • Newborns, 0 to 3 months: 14 to 17 hours.

Again this is not going to be true for everyone, its just a general guideline to help you gauge what the ‘right amount of sleep’ is going to be for you.

A Helping Hand

People who suffer from poor sleeping patterns are definitely looking for a long term solution to the problem. Fortunately there are a few rules you can follow that can help you establish healthy sleep patterns. Before bedtime: don’t eat, don’t drink alcohol, don’t do strenuous exercise, and don’t use any tech for at least an hour before going to bed. Work to establish a regular sleeping pattern. Go to sleep and wake up at roughly the same time every night and make sure you get physical exercise every day.

Herbs and supplements that can help include Ashwagandha, Valerian root, chamomile and dried hops. Supplements known to help include magnesium, gamma-aminobutyric acid, melatonin, and of course there is our personal favorite CBD.

Cannabinoids for the Win

Of the solutions mentioned above we have found in our personal experience that pound for pound, CBD is the most consistent and effective solution. CBD has the ability to correct imbalances in the homeostatic system and one of the shown causes of sleep disorders is an imbalance in cortisol production. CBD communicates with the homeostatic system through the Endocannabinoid System to correct the imbalance. There is the added bonus of CBD’s overall effect on the body which puts it at the top of our list for dealing with sleep disorders.

When we were first formulating our Sleep tincture we found that combining CBD with herbs such as Ashwagandha and Valerian root was very effective. Our Sleep tincture went on to become out most popular product. But we were still curious, so we went back to the lab and tweaked the recipe a bit more. The result is outstanding. We will be launching our new USDA Certified Organic Sleep tincture soon and you can see for yourselves, so stay tuned. In the meantime feel free to drop by the shop and check out our other awesome CBD products and have a great weekend.