- Melatonin acts as anti-cancer vaccine
- It is a hormone which regulates sleep-wake cycle
- Try to go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day
A good night's sleep can help you in more ways than one. From weight loss to hormonal balance, there are many ways in which sleeping well can help you. Time and again, we have spoken about the importance of sleeping well for controlling weight, blood pressure and cholesterol. But did you know that sleeping well is important for a healthy immunity and speedy recovery from cancer and also preventing it? Lifestyle coach Luke Coutinho takes to Facebook to talk about the importance of sleep and the health benefits that good night's sleep can offer. In a live video, he says that good sleep is often taken for granted and not paid much heed to. This in turn results in adverse health consequences.
Sleep and cancer: Sleeping well produces melatonin, a powerful hormone which helps in healing from cancer
- It is important to understand that there's a reason why you sleep. From weight loss to a healthy skin, digestion and immunity, sleeping well has a number of roles to play in our body.
- Luke informs that sleep is controlled by melatonin hormone which regulates sleep-wake cycle. It is released by the pineal gland.
- Melatonin can also be referred to as a powerful antioxidant and a cell protector. Cell protection is important for someone who is healing after cancer treatment.
- Melatonin gland is given a boost when there is darkness in the environment. It allows the pineal gland to release melatonin put the body to rest.
- Apart from putting your body to rest, melatonin also acts as anti-cancer vaccine. It has an anti-cell proliferation activity on cells, which means that it works on your immune system, helping you heal quickly.
- If you eat very close to sleeping, then it forces pancreas to produce digestive enzymes. This is why people who eat late dinners commonly experience indigestion, bloating, acidity, gas and flatulence. Also, your blood sugar levels are likely to shoot up if you regularly have late night meals.
- Luke informs that if you look at lifestyle of people with pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer, they usually have odd eating hours, they eat heavy meals, etc.
- Research has shown the impact of melatonin on every possible cancer, from prostate to colorectal, breast and pancreatic cancer. This is because melatonin reduces inflammation in the body and improves immune system.
How to work on improving sleep and boost melatonin production?
1. If you are suffering from cancer or are in the healing process of cancer or any other disease, and are not able to sleep well, talk to your doctor about melatonin instead of a usually-prescribed sleeping drug.
2. Try to go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day. Have a normal sleep and wake cycle to allow the melatonin to naturally work.
3. You can also have L tryptophan foods like eggs, salmon, spinach, seeds, milk, soy products and nuts. L tryptophan is a precursor to generating melatonin in the body.
Also read: Top 6 Ways To Fix Your Sleep Cycle
4. Avoid snacking heavy late at night. Nuts, seeds, almonds, cheese, hummus and paneer are all L tryptophan foods that can induce sleep.
5. Exercise regularly as it has been linked to your body's circadian rhythm. It can help you sleep well at night.
6. Get some sunshine. You can try looking directly at the sun at early sunrise or sunset, when the sunlight is not too strong. This helps in absorbing sunlight through your eyes. It can help in melatonin production.
7. Improve your gut health. Include probiotics in your diet and improve your lifestyle for better gut health.
8. Take a hot bath before sleeping. It helps in generating melatonin.
9. Cut down your intake of caffeine. Avoid having tea or coffee after 4 pm as it can cause difficulty in sleeping.
10. Meditation is an effective way to boost your pineal gland and produce sufficient melatonin.
11. Avoid using phone, TV, and laptop before going to sleep.
12. Have a hot cup of milk with a pinch of turmeric before going to sleep. It is an L tryptophan and can boost melatonin production.
(Luke Coutinho, Holistic Lifestyle Coach - Integrative Medicine)
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.