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Top tips for a good night’s sleep

what to do when

Establish a regular bedtime – go to bed at the same time every night and get up at the same time every morning, even at weekends Do something that relaxes you and takes your mind of any worries before going to bed – watch TV, read a book or simply picture yourself in your favourite, peaceful place

you can’t sleep C

If counting sheep and fluffing up your pillow ad nauseum is not working for you, and you are one of many Australians struggling to sleep at night, it’s time to wake up to the fact that there are things you can do about it. According to the recently published DSM-5, a sleep disorder is not only a risk factor for subsequent development of certain mental conditions, but a potential warning sign for serious mental or medical issues. For example, sleep disturbances can signal the presence of medical and neurological problems such as congestive heart failure, osteoarthritis, or Parkinson’s disease. Sleep disorders range from insomnia to narcolepsy, and breathing-related disorders to restless legs syndrome. Insomnia is by far the most common with


ISSUE 29 • 2013

50 per cent of the population experiencing it at some point in their lives. Defining insomnia Dr Delwyn Bartlett is a psychologist and insomnia specialist from the Woolcock Research Institute in Sydney, she says “if it takes more than 30 minutes to get to sleep and this happens more than three times a week and continues for over a month then you have insomnia. Difficulty staying asleep or waking too early is also a component”. Ideally the healthy sleep range is between six and a half to eight hours per night and typically healthy sleepers take about 15 minutes to get to sleep. Not only is insomnia highly distressing at night when you’re trying to nod off, the negative flow-on effects of non-sleep the next day can be just as stressful. Aside

Don’t have a heavy meal just before bedtime. If you tend to wake up with ‘night hunger’ eat a light protein snack before bed Don’t drink alcohol in the evening, it can create disturbed sleep and

Don’t do strenuous exercise before sleeping Stop drinking coffee and tea, or restrict it to morning only. Try a cup of chamomile tea or even licorice tea in the evening both have been known to induce sleep Try dabbing a little relaxing lavender essential oil on the insides of your wrists and your temples before bed

Keep your bedroom quiet, dark and conducive to sleeping – move the TV out If you’re worried about something, write the problem down on a piece of paper, together with solutions, before going to bed

If you feel you need a little extra help try anti-anxiety herbs that to help induce sleep naturally. continued over

from looking like you have had a big night out, day time consequences of not getting a good night’s sleep range from a lack of concentration, grumpiness, poor memory, clumsiness/carelessness, low mood, irritability, fatigue, headaches, depression and even anxiety. So what is causing so many sleepless citizens? Bartlett says the causes range considerably “Sleeplessness can be brought on by lifestyle choices, including the medications you take, lack of exercise, jet lag, too much caffeine, worrying to much, anxiety and hormone changes can also trigger it, everyone is different as is each case” Herbal help What we put into our bodies can affect our stress levels and the way we sleep. Research shows certain herbs can be beneficial in helping us go to sleep and stay asleep. Panax notoginseng is one such herb that has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years to help treat insomnia and to calm the mind. Ginseng has a history of use going back over 5,000 years. It is one of the most highly regarded of herbal medicines in the

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urrently over one third of Australians experience insomnia, and it’s a percentage that continues to grow as the stresses of modern living increase. Siobhan Moylan investigates natural, non-addictive options for the insomniacs of this world.

Use lighter bed coverings and turn off central heating – becoming overheated can disturb sleep

overheating during the night

ISSUE 29 • 2013




your guide to manuka honey UMF ratings ne of the most famous honeys in the world, manuka honey, is also one of the most potent, in terms of anti-bacterial activity. However, there are varying UMF antibacterial strengths available, check out which one’s for you.


For an energy boost and everyday general health

UMF® 10+

For relief of mild digestive complaints and general immune support

UMF® 15+

For the relief of digestive complaints, and poor immune health eg. sore throat

UMF 20+

For more severe conditions including stomach ulcers, ulcerated throats and mouths, severe sore throat

Since 1978, with 35 years experience, the professionals at Hivita® have been serving Australians. Throughout these years, Liquivita® has evolved as a health partner to health conscious families. The Hivita® product range has also grown, which may assist in the maintenance of general well-being.





Same formula, now with a new look!


Note: Honey should not be given to children under 12 months of age.

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Who can benefit from Hivita™ LiquiVita®? Good nutrition is the foundation of good health. Everyone, old and young, needs the four basic nutrients – water, carbohydrates, proteins and fats, as well as vitamins, minerals and other micronutrients, provided by a comprehensive diet and a healthy lifestyle. A deficiency of any of these nutrients may cause lifestyle issues. Hivita™ LiquiVita® may be beneficial. Hivita™ LiquiVita® is a multivitamin and mineral supplement with amino acids and herbs, with a mango and pineapple flavour.

Hivita™ LiquiVita® is a liquid format multivitamin that is a great option for those who may have difficulty in swallowing tablets. A comprehensive formulation to help fill nutritional gaps suitable for both kids (see label for directions) and adults alike. Hivita™ LiquiVita®:  Contains Vitamin C which is essential for the synthesis of collagen, and may help to maintain healthy teeth, gums and skin.  Contains B complex vitamins that are essential for the conversion of food to energy in the body, and can assist with maintaining vitality and stamina.

LECTED AVAILABLE IN SE ORES ST OD FO TH AL HE See for the new range. Use as directed. Always read the label. If symptoms persist, see your Healthcare Professional.



Siobhan Moylan is an investigative journalist based in the Eastern suburbs of Sydney. Having worked in radio, TV and in print for over a decade Siobhan’s main focus has been on health related topics.

UMF® 5+


Act early A recent Swedish study shows that if insomnia is left untreated, it can lead to anxiety and/or depression, likewise if depression is left untreated, this may lead to insomnia “it’s bio-directional” says Bartlett “So many people know that they have a problem because they can sense it and research shows that if you do seek help, particularly early on then you won’t develop anxiety around sleeping, so if you do think you have a problem, I would encourage you should seek help”.



Winding down Learning strategies to switch off your thinking mind is a key element of training yourself to sleep well, one way you can do this is by physically switching your appliances off at night says Bartlett “you need to wind down your light exposure close to bed time, you need to look forward to the end of the day and make your bedroom a place of sleep not work, it is about slowing down and letting go…We really still don’t have enough information about blue LED lights from computers yet, we do know that if young people are playing interactive games on computers at night that can delay sleep onset by up to 40-50 minutes”

Manuka Honey UMF rating


Orient and for good reason. A specific extract derived from Panax notoginseng known as Panatonin™, has been clinically shown to reduce the time taken to fall asleep and improve sleeping time. It works by regulating the ‘excitability’ of the brain; in doing so it may reduce the incidence of stress and anxiety. By reducing stress and anxiety the brain can more easily ‘switch off’. Zizyphus jujuba seed is another herb worth considering as an ingredient if more sleep is what the doctor has ordered. Traditionally it has been used for its calming actions and has long been used to reduce irritability and restlessness given its natural sedative properties. Other nutrients such as magnesium, calcium, and iron are also important for good sleep. A deficiency in these minerals can lead to insomnia.

Manuka honey is unique; it is produced by bees from the nectar of the New Zealand manuka bush, Leptospermum scoparium, and has earned a reputation for its health supporting benefits including digestive support, immune support and wound care. UMF® stands for ‘Unique Manuka Factor’, a measure of the unique type of antibacterial activity which is naturally present at varying levels in Manuka honey, which is dependent on weather conditions, soil type etc. The term UMF® was established by the Active Manuka Honey Association (AMHA – now called the Unique Manuka Factor Honey Association) and is trademarked to differentiate and highlight this unique activity. Only honey with a UMF® rating greater than five is allowed to display this mark must adhere to strict quality 16507_GO 1 14/06/13 standards 1:20 PM to guarantee the UMF® rating of the honey.

Insomniac tendencies?  

Herbs to help you nod off at night..

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