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Stress + Sleep

"Sleep is the best meditation."

- The 14th Dalai Lama, Spiritual Leader of the Tibetan People

- from the Law of Motion by Isaac Newton, English Mathematician + Politician (died 1727)

Clinical research has shown the health benefits of mindful breathing, daily meditation practice, and yoga. Siddhartha Gautama (aka the Buddha) taught 40 ways to meditate, from sitting and walking to standing and working meditation. Focusing on our breath, calming the mind, and living in the moment are powerful anecdotes to stress. As well, healthy sleep is considered as important as food and fitness and is involved in the healing and repair of heart and blood vessels. When added to a variety of healthy interventions, seven plus hours per night can reduce the risk of dementia, heart diseases, kidney disease, hypertension, diabetes, and obesity. It's also wise to put away mood-elevating, blue-light electronic devices an hour before bedtime.


Don't Forget to Breathe / Sleeping Beauties / What do vagal nerves have to do with stress? Everything. / Karoshi Kills / We Become Our Thoughts / "I'll Sleep When I'm Dead" / What Happens When We Sleep? / Seven Different Types of Meditation / Can Plant-Based Nutrition Help You Sleep Better? / How Meditation Works + Science-Based Meditation Practices


Don't Forget to Breathe

(four in + five out) 

As our body perceives stress, the adrenal glands make and release cortisol into our bloodstream. Also known as the stress hormone, cortisol causes an increase in our heart rate and blood pressure. Breathing in four times and breathing out five times through our nose is not only the most accessible ways to reduce stress, it's free and available forever.


Sleeping Beauties

(foods for the sugar plum fairies)

Foggy headed? Troubles concentrating? Sluggish motivations? Sleep my pretties, sleep. The science is clear: sleep is sensational in making us stronger, smarter, and slimmer. I started getting seven to eight hours of sleep after I quit smoking tobacco on my 30th birthday. Healthy sleep and WPF can also contribute to slowing down the aging process.


Karoshi Kills

(stress equals death)

When I lived in Japan, I felt stress more than ever before. Even though my own life was comparatively chill, I still felt the pressure, drive, and pace of this fascinating culture. In Japanese, karoshi means death from overwork. It was unfortunate to see crushed trains with exhausted people, who are working long hours under extremely high pressure. 


We Become Our Thoughts

(brains can be beautiful)

Science has caught up with what wise teachers and philosophers have been talking about for centuries: our thoughts, emotions, words, and (in)actions tend to create much of our reality. With an abundance of placebo effect studies and innovative cutting edge neuroscience, we now know that our brains can be re-wired through a more positive approach to life.

"There is a time for many words, and there is also a time for sleep."
- Homer, Greek Philosopher (born 1102 BCE)
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"I'll sleep when I'm dead."

Inflammation happens when we put (beneficial and not beneficial) stress on our bodies or have an injury. Then, our healing cells know where to go and what to do to combat this. When we put too much or not enough stress on our bodies through overly exercising or not moving at all (ie sedentary lifestyle), inflammation now becomes a CORE cause of chronic illness. Friend or foe? It's our choice.

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