Food, wellness and sleep expert, celebrity physician, and best-selling author Dr. Frank Lipman sat in with the Heal Squad to discuss how important sleep is for anti-aging and good health. It has been found that lack of sleep can lead to obesity, anxiety, and a long list of illnesses including Alzheimer’s and cancer. Lucky for us, Dr. Lipman shares tangible tools that will you sleep and age better.
Dr. Lipman is a leader in Functional Medicine, specializing in what he calls Good Medicine: a combination of modern medical treatments and age-old Eastern healing techniques. For almost 40 years, he has helped thousands of patients improve their physical health and emotional wellbeing… including our very own Kelsey Meyer whose stomach he’s helping!
1) Sleep is not a pass of time
Sleep is a self-cleaning mechanism. Your body is repairing itself while you sleep. If you don’t take the time to get enough rest, those toxins and chemicals will continue to build-up and affect the rest of your body.
2) Stay in tune with the primary rhythms
Our primary rhythms are being awake and asleep. Our body has many rhythms but when a primary rhythm falls out of order, so does everything else meaning you are going to wake up tired with aches and pains.
3) A lack of sleep can cause serious health issues
Sleep deficit issues build as you get older and can make you more prone to diabetes, Alzheimers, and much more.
4) Identify your main sleep issues
If you can pinpoint your sleeping problems, you can get better sleep. That is why Dr. Lipman created the 5 types of non-sleep: stress, rhythm, environmental, hormonal, and nutrition issues. Determining which type of problem you have is the first step to improving your sleep.
5) Fasting can improve sleep
Eat dinner at 6pm and then don’t eat until 10 or 11am the next morning. Not only will this improve your sleep, but also has aging benefits as well.
6) Sleep in a dark, cold room
It is vital to darken your room as much as possible as the darker the room, the easier it is for your body to produce melatonin. Secondly, sleep in a cold room.
7) Try an oura ring
Dr. Lipman shares one of his sleep-improvement tools: an oura ring. It tracks your REM sleep, how fast you fall asleep, your heart rate variability, and more!
8) Replace sleeping pills with CBD
Sleeping pills are the next opioid problem. If you are using medication to help you sleep, try swapping it for CBD instead.
9) Figure out your chronotype
What chronotype are you? Everyone is one of three chronotypes: an owl, lark, or hummingbird. Owls work best at night, lark’s in the morning, and hummingbird’s are a combination of the two. Often, owl’s find it hard to function at their best as our society is catered towards larks. But don’t fret, owls. You can change your chronotype, slowly but surely. Gradually sleep earlier until eventually, your body adjusts to sleeping at a “normal” time.
10) Avoid eating and drinking close to bedtime
Certain foods can actually worsen our sleep, particularly alcohol, sugar, and starches. Don’t drink after 6 or 7pm or eat sugar and starches close to bedtime.
11) Try power-napping
Replace that cup of coffee or sugary snack with a 15-minute power nap. Not only will it make you more productive during the day, but will also help you sleep better throughout the night.
12) Go outside first thing in the morning
During the day, we need daylight and at night, we need darkness. And if we do not receive what we need during one, it will affect how we function during the other. So, the best thing we can do to get a good night’s sleep is to get natural light during the day.
13) Power-down before going to bed
We must implement a “power-down process” before going to bed. This can be listening to calming music, taking a bath, or meditating. However, one common practice that we all must include is an “electronic shutdown” – the powering down of all electronics, ideally an hour or two before bedtime.
14) Find your self-care non-negotiables
Dr. Lipman shares his self-care non-negotiables: fasting, prioritizing sleep, meditating, treating others the way he’d like to be treated, and having fun.
15) Sleep slows down aging
One of the best aging tools is sleep. So ladies and gents, if taking care of yourself is not convincing enough to get more rest, how about aging well?!
16) Sleep helps prevents other age-related issues
Not only does sleeping slow down aging, but also helps prevent other age-related issues such as cognitive function, weakened heart function, and cancer.
Listen to the full interview here: