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Sleep regulates mood and can dramatically affect our mentality for the rest of the day. Good sleep gives the brain’s emotional centre the chance to rest, leaving us feeling positive and upbeat on waking. As we sleep, the brain processes our experiences from the day, deciding what needs storing and what does not. It is extremely important that we ensure our body the optimum amount of recovery through sleep. By valuing our sleep we not only allow ourselves to recharge, but it is also crucial for our body’s physiological and hormonal responses to recalibrate and work towards a healthy, balanced state.

Puresport’s CBD oil tinctures and also our nootropics range work to help relax the mind and body, expediting recovery by interacting with the endocannabinoid system (ECS).  There is some early research to suggest that CBD may help to ease symptoms of anxiety and depression, as well as also potentially soothing muscle soreness and inflammation. Those who support CBD oil praise its many uses for relieving conditions such as insomnia and depression, inflammation and chronic pain. We have many customers who attest to the power of Puresport’s CBD and adaptogen-based products achieve that elusive good night’s sleep.

Click here to shop our CBD oil tinctures range.

The body’s circadian rhythm

Our circadian rhythm is what regulates the timings of sleep as  well as many other aspects of our biological functioning and behaviour. The word is derived from the Latin circa (meaning “about”) and dies (meaning day). The body’s master clock is controlled by an area of the brain called the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), a cluster of 20,000 neurons found in the hypothalamus.

The SCN is reset each day by daylight – our eyes track the changing light levels and signal the SCN to synchronise our internal clock to match the rhythm of the external environment, and to trigger various body functions in response to these cues. Living in harmony with our circadian clock is a key component of good health, and sleeping well is one of the most important factors in keeping the circadian rhythm on track.

Below is an explanation of the Sleep/Stress Cycle that can inhibit your ability to have a good night’s sleep. In order to break this negative pattern of unfulfilling rest, we would recommend our Super Sleep Gift Set. The symbiotic pairing of our 1000mg CBD oil and our UNWIND capsules works to prepare your body for a stress-free drifting off where your muscles and mind are geared to rest.

Puresport’s Stress-Sleep Cycle

Hormones and Sleep

Hormones are chemical messengers that travel in the bloodstream and trigger certain bodily functions. Several hormones are associated with our circadian rhythm and regulating the sleep/wake cycle. Although some hormones directly regulate sleep, the relationship between hormones and sleep is a two-way street: the production of hormones, and the impact it has on sleep patterns, can also be influenced by the quality and quantity of our sleep.

Below are some of the most important hormones involved with sleep.

Progesterone

Progesterone is produced in the ovaries and adrenal gland. This hormone affects body temperature, REM sleep, and levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid – which can induce relaxation and sleepiness.

Cortisol

Cortisol is produced in the adrenal gland and is commonly referred to as “the stress hormone”. It peaks in the early morning as it increases alertness. It is also triggered as part of the body’s “fight or flight” stress response to threatening situations. It is therefore crucial that this hormone is reduced when approaching your bedtime. Puresport’s UNWIND oil and UNWIND capsules contain a synergistic mixture of adaptogens that will help to reduce your body’s levels of cortisol.

Oxytocin

Oxytocin is produced in the hypothalamus and pituitary gland; often labelled as the “love” hormone this is important for social and sexual behaviour. Oxytocin also slows the nervous system to promote sleep.

Adrenaline

Adrenaline is produced in the adrenal glands and is also a constituent of the body’s stress response. Raised levels of adrenaline can block the ability to fall asleep, so avoiding too much stress before bedtime is key for sleep quality.

Forming good sleep habits

Many specialists talk about the importance of “sleep hygiene”; put simply this is a set of guidelines that will help maximise your chances of getting the best and most restful sleep.

You must prioritise your sleep and work out exactly how much sleep you need. The body thrives on consistency so therefore it is essential to keep a regular routine. There needs to be a focus on a consistent sleep and wake time, seven days a week. Heading outside early in the morning, and keeping lights low at night helps to synchronise our circadian rhythm.

You must take care with caffeine: caffeine lingers in your system and has a sleep-blocking effect, so you should try and avoid consuming caffeine after 2pm. It is also crucial to reduce electrical stimulation, meaning you should try and avoid social media and emails at night. You should also think about your TV choices; an action movie is more likely to overstimulate  you and keep you awake.  Comfort is key, as sleep is an all-round sensory process, so ensure that the room is cool and your bed, bedding, and nightclothes are all comfortable. To make sure that your sleeping environment is in a good a shape as it could be, why not try our UNWIND pillow spray to spread a delightfully calming aroma of lavender, jojoba, and vanilla on your bed sheets.

You also should also try and remain active. Exercise helps regulate your circadian rhythm; to boost energy, you can try a 30 minute daytime nap but be careful to avoid longer naps. If you have a more sustained, and deep sleep you may wake and feel groggy not refreshed.

When should I exercise for optimum sleep?

Exercise is essential for health and wellbeing, but the timing and intensity of exercise can impact sleep. Working in harmony with your body clock means you can get the most out of the exercise and ensure good sleep. Cortisol levels in the body are naturally high early in the morning; although this is dubbed as the stress hormone, cortisol helps to lower inflammation and thus can improve the body’s rest and repair functions. This can make recovery from an early-morning workout easier. In order to counteract the muscle soreness and inflammation that can result from a vigorous workout, we would suggest using our 1000mg CBD muscle balm on areas of discomfort.

Puresport Team Member Tyler Saunders working out at National Fitness Games Bournemouth 2021

Sleep consolidates memory

Research into sleep and learning indicates that the declarative memory, which stores facts and events, is reinforced by slow-wave sleep, which you get more of in the first half of the night. Procedural memory, which helps us perform tasks without having to think about them (such as riding a bike), however, is consolidated by REM sleep, most of which happens later in the night.

Interestingly, recent research has also highlighted the importance of sleep spindles, bursts of brain activity that occur is Stage-2 sleep, in transferring memories into long-term storage. The length of time we spend in Stage-2 increases over the course of the night, so this may be another reason why the overall length of your sleep affects learning ability. Exactly how sleep aids learning is a complex area that needs further research, but given that different stages of sleep seem to facilitate different types of memory, ensuring that you get enough sleep to cycle through all these stages is an excellent way to help embed learning and memories.

In order to consolidate the memory enhancing powers of a good night’s rest, one can take Puresport’s CLARITY capsules throughout the day. This supplement helps to remove the effects of oxidative stress on the body whilst simultaneously fortifying learning and cognitive function. CLARITY contains L-theanine that can declutter an over-stimulated mind and improve focus; it can be used a taken as a tool to raise mental alertness. L-theanine may also be beneficial for those who experience increased blood pressure in stressful situations.

Check out our Christmas Gift Set which contains our Clarity capsules and Unwind oil alongside other great products.

How menstruation and menopause affects sleep

You may find that you experience poor sleep before and during your period, as well as around ovulation – this is brought on by hormone changes in the body.

Just before and after a period begins, progesterone and oestrogen levels are at their lowest, inhibiting the release of melatonin, the sleepiness hormone. This can result in problems with both falling and staying asleep. This usually passes by around day seven as hormone levels rise, but can recur during ovulation (approximately day 14 of a 28 day cycle) where oestrogen peaks – it stimulates the nervous system and increases wakefulness. Sleep improves towards day 21, only to be disrupted again as you reach day 28, and hormones dip again.

During your period, abdominal pain, bloating, or cramps can significantly disrupt sleep. A hot water bottle or regular magnesium supplements can help to relax the contracting muscles of the uterus and relieve symptoms. During menstruation, both oestrogen and progesterone dip and this inhibits the release of melatonin which is one of the aforementioned hormones that encourages sleep.

Our Female Balance Hormone Health product is a supplement that is specifically designed to assist females during their menstrual cycle. The natural ingredients included within our Hormone Health capsules, such as magnesium and zinc can help reduce painful symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), whilst Ashwagandha also reduces the effects of stress and can promote better sleep during menstruation.

Sleep and Immunity

As we sleep, we produce defences such as T-cells to fight infections and viruses. We also make proteins that fight infections and viruses, and the body produces proteins that fights inflammation. Getting enough sleep means that antioxidants are released, which help to repair cells and skin damage, and reduce inflammation. In order to support the positive effect of sleep for our body’s defences, you can use our IMMUNITY BOOST Gift Set that contains both our CBD, Turmeric and Ginger capsules as well as our BOOST oil.

Immunity Boost Gift Set in all its glory