When you sleep, this is a time that the body is resting, repairing, and regenerating itself from the stress of life.  Proper and adequate sleep can help you regenerate and revitalize yourself each day.  This can be considered anti-aging.

During sleep the body is resting the sympathetic nervous system.  The sympathetic nervous system’s main activity is during daytime cycles, such as flight or fight responses, increasing heart rate, and so on.  During sleep the parasympathetic system is more active.  It is involved with digestion, sleep, and other activities that occur primarily during sleep cycles.  During sleep your body is regenerating from the stress of daytime activity.


During sleep your body is recovering from the stress of life.  Without adequate and proper sleep, you may not fully recover from each day’s activities.  You may feel fine on a few hours sleep, but this does not mean your body is not stressed by lack of adequate and proper sleep.  For example, a smoker usually does not get side effects such as cancer or lung diseases, until they have been smoking 30 years or longer.  So if a smoker has been smoking 25 years and still does not have side effects, this does not mean he is healthy despite smoking.  The stress of improper sleep may not show up right away, but it is additional stress to the body nevertheless.


Your body has a sleep cycle.  A brain chemical called serotonin usually starts off the sleep cycle, leading to the production of the hormone called melatonin.  Shortly after melatonin is produced, deep sleep should occur for about 4-5 hours, During deep sleep growth hormone is active and helping to regenerate your body.  The last 2-3 hours of sleep are much lighter and involve the cycles of the sexual hormones such as testosterone.  The sexual hormone cycles are active about the time you are waking up.  Thus based on the body’s normal hormonal activity during sleep, you should be averaging about 7-7 and ˝ hours of sleep.  If you are averaging less sleep then you are limiting the time you are recovering from the stress of life.  This can add additional stress to your body each day.  Additionally improper and inadequate sleep does not support the primary hormones active while you sleep.  The hormones are the chemical messengers of the body and are vital to your health.  Stressing vital hormones by improper sleep is not a healthy activity


You can read the article about serotonin in the anti-aging of the brain section of this web site and you can check out the hormone section of this web site to learn how to balance serotonin, melatonin, growth hormone, and your sexual hormones to help support sleep cycles.  Stress is the method by which aging, degeneration, breakdown, and death result.  If you spend many days of your life with improper and inadequate sleep, this is accumulative stress happening each time to your body.  This will not help you to regenerate and revitalize yourself each day from the stress of living.   IF you are sleeping only a few hours a night consider methods to help you develop deep sleep and adequate refreshing sleep.  A starting place might be to balance serotonin and the vital hormones that are highly active during sleep cycles.  Good luck.

Note – There are exceptions to how much sleep you need.  There are a few people who may only need 1-2 hours sleep.  There are a few people who are known to need no sleep.  This article applies to the vast majority of people who need regular amounts of sleep.


Note – In order for these nutritional ideas to be successful, you must use supplements of the highest quality. Dr. Bob often said, “almost all supplement companies produce poor quality.”  You can consider the product page of this web site. Almost all the products met Dr. Bob’s approval.  Since he passed away we have attempted to keep the same high standards. 



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The Food and Drug Administration has not evaluated any of the statements contained on this web site. The information contained in this article is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Remember each person's body is different and will react differently to various herbal, vitamin and mineral supplements. Therefore, any supplementation must be administered on an individual basis. Use the information found on this web site as precisely that: Information. You and your doctor must make any final decisions. This information is not meant to replace any doctor and patient consultation. This information should in no way replace your personal physician's advice.




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Page Last Modified: 26 Sep 2004