Can more sleep help make your heart healthier?

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can sleep help heart health? Survey says yes!If you have questionable sleep habits – pulling allnighters, catching snoozes to make up for lost sleep, restless sleep – you are doing yourself no favors when it comes to heart health.

In a 12-year study of more than 14,000 men and women ages 20–65, researchers first looked at how effective the combination of diet, exercise, not smoking, and moderate alcohol consumption were in preventing heart disease. Study participants who had adopted all four behaviors were 57% less likely to develop cardiovascular disease—and had a 67% lower chance of dying from heart or blood vessel problems—during the study compared to people who had adopted only one habit or forwent a heart-healthy lifestyle altogether.

But getting seven or more hours of sleep a night boosted the overall protective benefit of these behaviors, resulting in a 65 percent lower risk of CVD and a 83% lower risk of fatal events. “This research shows combining a good night’s sleep with other healthy lifestyle choices can reduce your risk of heart disease.” said Doireann Maddock, of the British Heart Foundation.

Can aromatherapy help with sleep problems?

My favorite combination for getting a great night’s sleep is known in my house as “GO TO SLEEP!” .. looks menacing, but is actually just the opposite. If I happen to wake up in the middle of the night, I just fumble around for the bottle on my nightstand, twist off the cap and roll the blend onto my temples and forehead. (Putting it on my temples ensures that some gets on my pillow.) It’s also great on the bottoms of your feet and the back of your neck.

GO TO SLEEP! blend

Drop oils into a small roller bottle and top up with Fractionated Coconut Oil.

How do essential oils help you sleep?

The fragrance of essential oils affects the brain’s limbic system, which controls major bodily functions.

Oils can have many different properties – the most beneficial oil for inducing sleep are soporific (sleep-inducing) or calmative (sedative)

Essential oils that support a restful night’s sleep.

Cypress –  relaxing
Lavender – calming
Roman Chamomile – sleep inducing
Sandalwood – relaxing
Vetiver – relaxing

Potential causes of sleeplessness

Sleep apnea can be debilitating. A friend of mine who suffers from sleep apnea found that Peppermint oil helped him to not have to rely on his CPAP machine any longer. He put a drop onto a cotton ball, then put that next to the air intake of his CPAP. This had such a great effect on the opening of his airways, now he no longer has to worry about falling asleep in front of the TV without his machine on!

Stress, anxiety, and depression can all cause interrupted sleep patterns. Medication, aging, poor lifestyle habits, and changes in health or activity level are also culprits. Many of these underlying conditions can be addressed with essential oils too, which help bring your body systems move into a state of alignment, allowing the body to heal itself.

Poor sleeping patterns may disappear as a side effect of a healthy body!

photo credit: thejbird via photopin cc

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  1. Karly - No Snore Zone says

    Great post Vikki! The short answer is yes. Lack of sleep can increase insulin resistance which is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

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