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Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and find it difficult to fall back asleep.


Q. Dear Terry, “I normally sleep comfortably through the evening. However, sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and find it difficult to fall back asleep. Is there anything you can recommend?” — Mark G., La Jolla, CA

A. Dear Mark, Sometimes sleep disturbances can be caused by blood sugar imbalances. If you awaken during the middle of the night, I recommend eating a snack that is high in good fats. My favorite foods to help me fall back asleep include cheese, avocado, or nut butter. You may also want to try and avoid meals that are full of simple carbohydrates and sugar several hours before going to sleep. To learn more you can view my healthy fats webinar on YouTube.

In addition to the dietary changes, there are four botanicals I use for sleep because they are known for their ability to calm our minds and relax our bodies.

Lemon balm is a lemon-scented herb that has been used medicinally for centuries. Lemon balm is an effective calming agent and mild sedative.

Lavender is another natural sleep aid. Long promoted for its effects on feelings of well-being, lavender flowers were commonly placed under pillows to help promote sleep. Scientific studies suggest that lavender oil works to relieve anxiety and is a mild sedative, increasing deep sleep.

Mandarin is traditionally used to help settle the nervous system and induce sleep. Mandarin peel is widely used to fight stress because of its exceptional soothing and calming effects. Scientists believe the compounds in mandarin peel, including limonene, work synergistically to promote relaxation and sleep.

Lastly, ravensara is a rainforest tree with very fragrant leaves, bark, and nuts. The indigenous people of Madagascar have used this tree as an all-around health tonic for centuries. I recommend ravensara leaf oil because of its powerful effects for relieving insomnia, reducing depression, and alleviating nervous tension.

I suggest a blend of mandarin zest extract, lemon balm leaf, ravensara leaf oil, and lavender flower oil. I would take this blend thirty minutes to an hour before bedtime.

Healthy Regards!

Terry . . . Naturally

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