Benefits of serotonin

If you or anyone you know is suffering from fibromyalgia, migraines, chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, sleep disorders, diabetes, anxiety, or weight gain, you may want to share this with them. Research has shown that all of these ailments are related to lack of Serotonin.

Raising Serotonin levels can improve muscle pain from fibromyalgia. Serotonin is the chemical messenger that sends signals to nerve cells. This connection helps to cut down on migraine frequency, depression, sleeping disorders, fatigue, anxiety as well as with weight loss. It helps with weight loss because it suppresses the appetite, cutting down carb cravings. All of this works because Serotonin is converted to melatonin, promoting healthier sleeping habits.

Our bodies produce an Amino acid called 5-HTP to help the body produce Serotonin. Unfortunately, 5-HTP cannot be found in any foods we eat. It can, however, be derived from a seed of an African shrub, called griffonia simplicifolia.

I’m glad to say I found 5-HTP in a supplement called Luminex. No matter what life throws at you, patented Luminex is there. For everyday stresses or moodiness, Luminex can help support your emotional balance and confidence to live life to the fullest—and greet every day with a smile. It has really made a difference in my life!

Battling SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder)

Winter typically presents challenges to both our physical and emotional health. Seasonal Affective Disorder from the short days, dealing with difficult relationships, financial stress, inclement weather, or a host of other issues, it can be a tough time.

I’m not an authority on this subject, but I have observed a number of things that can help keep you physically and emotionally healthy during this time.

There’s less daylight and your skin is almost totally covered with clothing such that your natural vitamin D production is almost nil. Those short days also lend themselves to Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) which can not only depress your immune system, but also affect you emotionally.

Your home and workplace is shut up, so you have a lack of fresh air and a greater exposure to disease-causing microorganisms. That closed environment also makes it easier for you to get infections from those around you.

Colder temperatures are also just more stressful on your body, requiring greater adaptation to stay healthy. So what can you do:

1. Be sure to take at least 2000 i.u.’s of Vitamin D-3 daily — you may need more, especially if you live in a non-sunny climate. Check with your health care provider before adding more than that. Sunlight is the primary source for this essential nutrient. Between sunscreen use and modern lifestyles that keep us indoors during the sunniest parts of the day, most of us don’t get the sun exposure we need to produce required amounts of vitamin D. According to research published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, three-quarters of U.S. adults and teens are vitamin D deficient!

2. Get some fresh air in your home, even if that’s just opening some windows for a few minutes or leaving a window cracked in your bedroom at night.

3. If you are particularly bothered by the short days, consider getting one of the specially designed full-spectrum lights and expose yourself to it in the early morning and late afternoon.

4. Take other immune system stimulating supplements. In  in addition to Vtamin D, I take Activate Immune Complex. It’s a combination of scientifically formulated nutrients, extracts and vitamins ( Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Zinc, Echinacea, Astragalus and Aronia in an exclusive combination that’s been shown in scientific studies to help support the body’s own defense mechanism—the immune system.*

*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Do you have a nighttime sleep routine?

In an ideal world, I’d bet all of us would love to have more consistency in our sleep schedule. Half of adults don’t get enough shut-eye, with many admitting to lying awake at night fretting about their worries. I know it’s a struggle for me to get six to seven hours that help me feel my best. I am trying to get seven to eight hours every night and it seems the key is to have a wind down routine.

Even if its brief — just five minutes — having that routine will mentally prepare for and prioritize sleep. It also prompts an interesting mindset switch of sleep: you will begin to discover you can prepare for sleep in the same way that you prepare for physical training.

Having a regular routine, and the same bedtime each night, are important components of healthy sleep practices. I try to keep my own routine regular and make it a priority to get at least seven hours of sleep. I turn off the light by about 10. It’s important to have a bit of a buffer from the chaos of our day, and to wind down and relax to allow you to get that quality of rest you need.

It’s also a good idea to set a reminder alarm on your phone to remind you when to start to wind down and to stay on target for bedtime. If you set the alarm for a half-hour before bedtime, when it goes off, it will trigger the reminder that you have 30 minutes to wrap up your day and send that last email, pay the bill you’ve been meaning to pay all day and get a to-do list for the next day sorted.

For some people about an hour before bedtime, they will have warm tea and read or a bit of prayer or gratitude quiet time to wind down. Researchers at the University of Sussex found that just six minutes of reading per day can reduce stress levels by 68%. Reading can also improve your memory and increase your productivity.

In the chaos of the day, it’s good to have a designated quiet time. Many say it’s the little bit of the day they look forward to, because it gives a chance to relax and reflect.

Research shows that powering down technology to minimize exposure to blue light — which can negatively impact sleep quality is vital.. Scientists now know blue light suppresses the release of melatonin, the hormone that tells the body it’s time for sleep.

It’s a good idea to get off of all devices—physically flip over your phone so it goes into ‘Do not disturb’ mode.

You can also do stretch and breathing exercises. Do breathing exercises in a dimly lit, cool, quiet room to prepare for sleep. Even though stretching is active, you can partner the deep breathing exercises with it to activate your parasympathetic system and start the transition to sleep.

Next, focus on your sleep environment Most people don’t give much thought to the aesthetics of their snoozing space, but you’d be surprised how big of a difference it makes — keep it quiet, dark and cool — since research shows that is a factor. Research also shows that things like fresh sheets can easily make your slumbering experience better, and 71% of people surveyed said they sleep better when their sheets are clean. To give yourself the best chance of a good night’s sleep, consider your bed as a place for sleep and sleep alone – most nights at least.

Then, stick to the same wind-down routine because that consistency helps, although it’s not just about what we do in the evening. Sleep quality is also about the choices that we make during the day.

If you plan on taking a power nap during the day, try to be mindful of the length —aim for 20 to 30 minutes and limit caffeine or alcohol intake, since research shows that the latter can harm REM sleep.

All those things really contribute to how you’re going to sleep at night, along with what you do the hour before bed.