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How to Beat Insomnia Naturally - LuxEco Living | LuxEco Living
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How to Beat Insomnia Naturally

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by Lori Alper, Founder, Groovy Green Livin’

Courtesy of Healthy Child Healthy World

After the birth of my third child I suffered from insomnia that lasted well beyond the newborn phase. For those of you who haven’t experienced insomnia it’s pretty awful. During that year (yes, 12 months) of sleepless nights there were times when I was able to fall right asleep, but would then wake up and stare at the ceiling for hours unable to fall back asleep. There were other times when I was unable to fall asleep from the get-go and would lie awake for hours listening to my husbands sleeping breath, feeling envious of his uncanny ability to fall asleep the minute his head hits the pillow. I was desperate to find a way out of this horrible, sleep-deprived state.

Insomnia Stats:

  • More than 30% of the population suffers from insomnia.
  • Between 40% and 60% of people over the age of 60 suffer from insomnia.
  • Women are up to twice as likely to suffer from insomnia than men.
  • Approximately 10 million people in the U.S. use prescription sleep aids.

I turned to a combination of natural, non-toxic remedies for insomnia that ultimately did the trick-it took time and it wasn’t easy. I’ve happily joined the ranks of ”those” people whose eyes close the minute their head hits the pillow.

Acupuncture

Acupuncture has been a part of my life for many years. I have used it for everything from plantar fasciitis to the flu. I knew from past experience that acupuncture really worked, so it was worth a shot for insomnia.

Through the insertion of needles into pressure points around the body, acupuncture helps to activate the body’s qi (our bodies natural energy or life-force) throughout the body. Insomnia was letting me know that my body was out of balance.

Healthy Diet

A healthy diet can pave the way for a good night’s sleep.

  • Caffeine in moderation is OK, but there is such a thing as too much caffeine and it messes with your sleep.
  • Avoid processed sugar and processed foods-especially before bedtime.
  • Consume foods that are rich in magnesium: leafy green vegetables, pumpkin, sesame or sunflower seeds, salmon and halibut contain high levels of magnesium.
  • Drink chamomile tea which contains tryptophan (also found in turkey), an amino acid known for its tranquilizing effects. When taken as a tea infusion, these properties act as a relaxant in our bodies and help to promote sleep.

Relaxation Techniques

During my stint with insomnia I turned immediately towards my yoga practice. Kripalu style yoga was a perfect fit at the time-a combination of relaxation, meditation and postures. There are so many different types of yoga so it’s important to find a practice that meets your needs. I also went regularly to my massage therapist.

Valarian

When I’m desperate for relief I often find myself buying out the entire Whole Body section at Whole Foods. I’m not big on taking anything, but I decided to try out a few natural sleep aides to see if anything would help. I was most interested in finding something that wasn’t addictive or would cause grogginess in the morning. Most of the products I purchased contained valarian. Valarian is a flowering plant that is native to both Europe and Asia and is now also grown in North America, has long been used medicinally particularly for sleep.

The combination of all of these things helped me put an end to sleepless nights. The trick is to find a combination of remedies that work for you.

Have you ever had insomnia? What do you do to get a good night’s sleep?

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Article by Nancy Chuda

Nancy Chuda is a seasoned broadcast journalist, television writer/producer, talk show host and author. Her career spans over three decades having appeared on both national and cable television. In 1971 she authored one of America’s first low-calorie cookbooks, How To Gorge George Without Fattening Fanny, published by Hawthorn Books. Appearing as a regular guest on Dinah’s Place, Dinah Shore’s ABC daytime talk show. And later on The Johnny Carson Show, The Today Show with Barbara Walters, Merv Griffin, Phil Donahue, and David Frost. In 1972, Nancy and ABC’s Good Morning America co-produced Michael Krause produced a cable program, The Low- Calorie Gallery, based on her best selling cook book. In 1975, hired by Warner-Amex as part of a creative team, she was responsible for hosting and producing content for Columbus Then and Now, a program, the invention of QUBE, an interactive television system which played a pivotal role in the history of American cable television. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QUBE In 1978 she developed a series for ABC’s Good Morning America based on an article which appeared in Mother Earth News magazine. The Integral Urban House, a case study project and model for a sound urban habitat sponsored by the Farallones Institute in Berkley California was the first example of green architecture ever to be televised. In 1979, Nancy co-produced and hosted Sunnyside a Los Angeles based public affairs program viewed on the CBS affiliate station KNXT, From 1980-1984, she appeared on KABC’s Eyewitness News as entertainment reporter and film critic. Her environmental advocacy began when her daughter was diagnosed with cancer. In 1990 she co-produced an Emmy nominated ABC Variety Special, An Evening With Friends For The Environment to benefit Mothers and Others for a Livable Planet one of the first national children’s environmental health advocacy groups in which she served as a volunteer. Currently, she is the co-founder and President Emeritus of Healthy Child Healthy World, a non-profit organization established to honor the Chuda’s only child, Colette, who died in 1991 at the age of 5 from Wilm’s tumor a nonhereditary childhood cancer. She is also the co-founder of The Colette Chuda Environmental Fund, a donor-advised fund which supports major epidemiological research on children’s health. Nancy has won numerous awards for her advocacy. In 1996, the California League of Conservation Voters Environmental Leadership Award, The Healthy Schools Heroes Award, presented to both her and her husband James Chuda by California Governor Gray Davis for their legislative efforts in securing The Healthy Schools Act which was signed into law in September, 2000. In 2003, Parent’s Magazine published an article Mom’s On A Mission and awarded Nancy for her environmental leadership for children’s environmental health. She serves as an associate of the Director’s Council of Public Representatives of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and was appointed by President Clinton’s Health and Human Services Secretary, Donna Shalala, to serve as a member of the National Advisory Council for the National Institutes of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) a position she held for four years. In 2010, along with her husband James she founded LuxEcoLiving. Nancy Chuda tagged this post with: , , Read 221 articles by
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Meet the LuxEco Team and Advocates

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Nancy Chuda, Co-Founder of LuxEco Living and Healthy Child Healthy World
James Chuda, Co-Founder of LuxEco Living and Healthy Child Healthy World
Bethany Colson, Consulting Editor of LuxEco Living and Beauty Expert
Christopher David Kaufman, Marketing Director of LuxEco Living
Brooke Rewa, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Dow-Yung Kou, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Alanna Brown, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Jessica Borges, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Bradlee Gold, LuxEco Marketing Assistant
Derin Richardson, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Lauren O'Neill, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Hannah Canvasser, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Basil Vernon, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Michelle Dennis, LuxEco Marketing Assistant
Bernadette Bowman, LuxEco Advocate and Comedienne who writes the Life Goes Retrograde
F.R.E.E. Will, LuxEco Editorial Assistant and author of the In The Spice Cabinet series
Mary Villano, LuxEco Editorial Assistant and author of the Resplendent Repurposing series
Will Lana, Vice President of Trillium Asset Managment and LuxEco Advocate
Molly Rovero, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Leslie Harris, Interior Designer, Leslie Harris Interior Design and LuxEco Advocate
Kerin Van Hoosear, LuxEco Editorial Assistant and author of Kerin's Seasonal Cooking series
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Lisa Adams, Designer and CEO of LA Closet Design and LuxEco Advocate
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Joanna Bateman, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Dr. Harvey Karp, Pediatrician and Child Development Specialist and Creator of "The Happiest Baby on the Block” and “The Happiest Toddler on the Block” book and DVD series World and LuxEco Advocate
Florence "Flip" Ross, LuxEco Advocate
Nina Montee Karp, Executive Producer & Director The Path of Wellness & Healing and LuxEco Advocate
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Molly Cimikoski, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Lush Huxley, LuxEco Editorial Assistant
Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff, Executive Director/CEO of Healthy Child Healthy World and LuxEco Advocate
Zhenya Gershman, Artist and LuxEco Advocate
Anna Getty, Author and LuxEco Advocate
Christopher Gavigan, Board Member and Former Executive Director of Healthy Child Healthy World and LuxEco Advocate
Lewis Perkins, Founder of Women Are Saving The World Now and LuxEco Advocate
Francine LeFrak, Founder of Same Sky and LuxEco Advocate
Interested in contributing with our LuxEco Advocate program? We are looking for experts, researchers, academics, activists and everyday people who want to join our cause to make the world a safer, healthier place for all of and nature to flourish in, in harmony! Email the Manager Editor, Bethany Colson