Sweet Sleep: how honey helps with a good night’s sleep
While you may think sleeping means rest for our body, your brain actually uses a lot of energy through the night. How else would you have those vivid dreams? One of the main sources of energy for the brain is from sugar, specifically the sugar stored in the liver. Liver glycogen is the first stop the brain takes to find energy. To improve your brain’s ability to function through the night, having extra sugar is key, with raw honey being the preferred source for that sugar!
Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night abruptly by your body? Whether you were strangely hungry or just uncomfortable? There is a pretty big chance that, that was your brain waking you up for more fuel! Our liver holds 75-100 grams of glycogen at one time. Per hour, our body consumes 10 grams of that glycogen. For many of us, we tend to eat dinner somewhat early, around 6- 7 p.m, but don’t actually go to bed until around 11 p.m. In the time between eating and actually calling it a night, our body has used up a significant portion of the glycogen we stored from our dinner, leaving less than needed to fuel a good 8 hours of sleep. Halfway through an otherwise great night's sleep, your brain tells your body “hey, I need more energy” waking you up from that beauty sleep!
The Sleep Solution
A teaspoon of honey before bed is just what the doctor ordered. The sweet liquid will restock the liver with the glycogen needed to prevent the crisis trigger from the brain. Honey's natural sugars also slightly raise insulin, allowing tryptophan to enter the brain. What is tryptophan? Tryptophan is an amino acid that is turned into niacin, an essential B vitamin. Niacin is a key player in the creation of serotonin, a neurotransmitter needed to produce melatonin and put your body to sleep.There is no extra step needed when it comes to using honey to aid in your sleep. Sure, you can add it to tea, make a little potion, or add some cinnamon, but all you really need is a clean spoon and a jar of raw honey!
Why Raw Honey?
In all cases, when it comes to raw vs. pasteurized honey, there is no contest! Pasteurization kills most of the vitamins, antioxidants, and antibiotic elements in honey, aka all of the benefits honey, has to offer. For sleep, raw honey is also a significantly better choice. Raw honey is said to be around 22% better at making liver glycogen than pasteurized conventional honey. Safe to say raw honey is always the right choice! Now that all you busy bees know the secret to great sleep, get ready for the beauty rest you’ve always dreamed of! Sweet dreams and nighty night!- Nathaniel Altman, The Honey Prescription– Dr. Ron Fesseden, The Honey Revolution
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