Is Social Media Affecting Your Ability to Sleep?

What Are You Doing Before You Sleep?

We are a society addicted to our social media.  How long has it been since you last checked your smart phone?  How many texts & tweets did you send today?  Do you like to finish off the day by jumping on your laptop/tablet or cell phone?  You may have problems sleeping then.

How “Blue Light” Can Rob You of Sleep

Electronic devices such as computers, televisions, smartphones, etc. emit  an artificial light that disrupts our sleep cycle. Exposure to this type of light suppresses the production of a hormone called “melatonin”.  Melatonin is a very important nutrient that helps control our sleep and wake cycles.  Being exposed to blue light right before bed can contribute to insomnia. With the pressures that Americans face on a daily basis, sleep is needed more than ever.

Melatonin is Very Important to Your Health

Melatonin is very important to your immune system and it has a very crucial role in helping to prevent cancer.  Because it is an antioxidant, melatonin can not only help keep your strong, but can also help combat inflammation. It is also a very important anti-aging nutrient and may even help slow down the aging of your brain.

Melatonin and Cancer

According to the ACS (American Cancer Society), over 200,000 women in America get breast cancer every year.  In fact, 1 out of 8 women will develop breast cancer.  That is a staggering statistic.  Melatonin has many anti-cancer benefits.  It inhibits the production of many types of cancer cells, with breast cancer being one of them.

All cells in the body, including cancer cells have melatonin receptors.  If there is abundant melatonin circulating throughout the cells in the evening, the division of  cancer cells slows down.   Estrogen tends to stimulate cancer cells.  When melatonin attaches to a breast cancer cell, it slows down the estrogen stimulation.

How to Increase Your Melatonin Production

In order to be healthy, you need to have a good supply of melatonin in your body.  Don’t let your social media habit keep you from producing this important hormone.

  • There are many foods that help to raise your melatonin levels.  The top ones are:  tart (sour) cherry juice concentrate, tart cherries, walnuts, mustard seed, corn, rice and ginger root.
  • Do NOT use gadgets or watch TV at least 30 minutes before bed.  What can you do instead?  Here are 2 suggestions – “talk” to someone verbally or read a book.  If you are under 30, these may be foreign concepts to you.  For more information  you can google directions on how to do this.  🙂
  • Take a melatonin supplement on a temporary basis until your sleep improves.

Sleep is very important to your health for many reasons.  See our other blogs for more tips on how to get a good night’s sleep.

To your Health!

Peter Gillham

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