Biohacking Sleep

All right everyone, we are live, hello, I'm Dr Robin Berzin here at our centre in New York City for Parsley Health and we are doing a weekly Facebook live series on biohacking

Biohacking has become a subject that's super interesting to me and dear to my heart as I've been trying out many different biohacks And something I've realized through talking to different people, is that biohacking sounds scary and weird and inaccessible to most people and sounds like something that you have to be like a super optimizer to do, and the big takeaway is that we are all, all biohacking all the time We are doing that because we are all trying to just improve our health and that's basic things that you're doing every day might in fact be biohacks So if you missed last week's Facebook live and Instagram live with Keri Glassman from Nutritious Life, check it out, it's on our Facebook page, we did intermittent fasting and high-fat coffee and we have an awesome new blog post on our website on our Morning Glory high-fat coffee recipe so check that out, it's really great, it's a coffee that I have many cases in the morning And then we're also going to be continuing this series both through our blog and our newsletter, if you haven't signed up so get all the sort of cliff notes from today's video from that and follow along

We're going to be talking about lots of different topics that are relevant to all of us, you do not need to be a super fitness person or a hyper optimizer or somebody covered in wearables, you can be anyone and you can biohack, case and point here Ok, so today we're going to talk about sleep and a lot of us are not getting enough sleep I was just with the patients this morning and she wakes up at 5:30 and she doesn't go to bed until 11:00 or midnight but she's, she's on average getting five and a half to six and a half hours of sleep and all the research shows that those, you know, mythical people who survive on four hours of sleep at night and feel fine, they're fake, like, they're made up, they really don't exist Most of us need seven and a half to eight hours of sleep to optimize our health and to feel our best and so what does that mean? So sleep is not just about energy, although if you're feeling tired all the time the number one thing to look at is how are you sleeping and how long are you sleeping Sleep is also critical for regulating hormones

It's important for regulating our cortisol, it's important for regulating our sex hormones Sleep is important for our metabolisms After a bad night's sleep you may actually be effectively pre-diabetic the next day because our insulin sensitivity is reduced the day after we have a really bad night's sleep Sleep is critical for mood, okay, how you feel in terms of anxiety and even depression can be impacted by how well you're sleeping Sleep, also can mean, poor sleep can lead you to having an increased appetite

Obviously eating more, eating the wrong foods to just keep your energy up and keep going We've all been there when we need that sugary thing or that muffin or that brownie or whatever it is when we're tired and we're just trying to keep going Then you also want to look at things, even things that might surprise you like digestion and immunity, poor sleep can actually create dysfunctional digestion because sleep are serotonin are actually linked and we know that 95 percent of the serotonin in your body's in your gut and that gut motility and the gut nervous system is highly regulated by a lot of other systems in the body and sleep is really important for regulating that too And then immune system, poor sleep actually drops your immunity I know a lot of people who are getting sick right now and getting colds

I had patients writing in this morning, I'm on my third cold of the season, it really seems like people are getting it and not getting enough quality sleep actually depresses immunity So, how should we be sleeping? What is the way to sleep so that you feel better and optimize your health? And this is what makes sleep actually my favorite biohack and the one that we all should be hacking all the time because in today's world where we're surrounded by electric light and we are looking at screens and we are go go go and we are drinking caffeine, we are all suffering for poor quality sleep Add in medications, various medications, especially stimulants of course the ritalins of the world, those could really affect your sleep and a lot of people are on those We are really messing with a natural sleep rhythm and that is really affecting our lives and our moods and our ability to be effective and our ability to be focused and our ability to just enjoy ourselves Not to mention, weight, immunity, digestion, all the things that I just went through

So, how do you hack your sleep? First of all, sleep in the dark That sounds really obvious but it doesn't happen If you look around your room at night and because of lights from outside on the street or lights from electronics in your room you actually are messing with both serotonin and melatonin production from the pineal glands The pineal gland is this little gland in the center of the brain, think of it as a third eye a couple inches back and from here in your forehead and it actually manufactures melatonin and it can make melatonin from serotonin so these hormones are now related, okay, and melatonin is what regulates our circadian rhythm, our sleep/wake cycle, so if you are exposed to blue light from your tablet or your phone or your computer until late in the evening, you're around a lot of electric lights or there's a light in your bedroom at night, you're going to be signalling to your brain that you should be awake and then you're not going to have a deep or restful sleep So how to combat that? First of all, I love the flux app

Get that app on any of your devices It actually filters out blue light I have it on my computer and my phone so that I'm able to filter out that light from exposure as the day wears on, it actually kind of kicks in towards the end of the day, around five o'clock depending on what time zone you're in That's really smart Another thing I like to do is just make sure that, we have an air filter in our bedroom that has one of those annoying little blue lights on top of it and I've actually put duct tape over it because that blue light actually creates light and we have blackout shades on our bedroom windows so we've actually really taken it seriously to sleep in the dark so that we're not triggering ourselves to be awake or to be in and out of a deep sleep all night

The second thing to do is stay cool So the body actually sleeps better if you're in a room between 60 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit So a lot of us have the heat up during the day, this time of year there's a lot of ambient heat in buildings, there's dry heat, you may have to turn off your heat or open a window or get a fan but the body likes to be covered and but have that 60 to 68 degree temperature, it actually has been shown to let your body fall into a deeper sleep Another study showed though that if your feet are cold you're gonna have a harder time sleeping So if you're in a cool room and you don't have the right blankets put on some warm socks

Your feet being warm can actually also help you fall into a deeper sleep even though we want the ambient temperature to be cooler Another one is avoid caffeine Okay, so 60% of us have a genetic, what's known as genetic polymorphisms, single nucleotide polymorphisms snip, it doesn't mean that you have a genetic defect it just means that we all have different variants of genes, that's what a snip is, and 60% of Americans have the snip from slow metabolism of caffeine, it's called CYP 182, and that genetic snip can mean that you don't metabolize caffeine that well so it hangs around in your body longer than other people It can lead to things like heart palpitations and it increases things like jitteriness and anxiety but it also really affects sleep So I can't tell you how many people are having that afternoon coffee and then they're like, well I just can't go to sleep until midnight, and what we know is that they're just having that afternoon caffeine and so I really recommend two people, one serving of caffeine a day max

I have a double espresso every morning, I love it, literally can't start my day without it I have a double espresso with a macchiato so just a little bit of almond or oat milk in it I don't have any other caffeine for the rest of the day because I'm a slow metabolizer like 60% of you out there and you're really going to want to make sure that, that's not affecting your sleep later The next thing you can do during the day is move So, reams of exercise have proven that if you exercise and move during the day you sleep better

So if you're getting into a phase and you're like, God I'm not sleeping and I'm not feeling better, not feeling well and I'm not sure why and I can't fall asleep at night or I'm waking up Number one have you been exercising lately? and have you been having caffeine in the afternoon? That's number two because those are the two biggest culprits Moving everyday, even if you do a 15-minute high-intensity interval training workout or even a seven minute, the seven minute workout, the famous one is on the New York Times, do it You can do it at home, you can get a video This is something that's really easy but if you move every single day, the more you move the better you'll sleep, but the exercise is the body's way of moving energy out right, we have so much energy coming in, so much stimulus from the world that we live in coming in, you got to put that energy somewhere otherwise it'll circulate and it'll stay and it'll keep you anxious, it'll keep you irritable, it'll keep you awake at night

And then the next thing is to always have a bedtime routine So I call it screen free 30 So 30 minutes before bed, no screens, that includes scrolling the interwebs and the instagrams, like, put it away Take an Epsom salt bath or bath to relax, take a shower if that helps you to chill out Do your stretching or your yoga practice

Do your meditation, make some tea and just sit and breathe Make your lunch for the next day You know, cooking can be really meditative and it's analog, it doesn't involve looking at something stimulating, but use that time before bed so that you're not stimulated, stimulated, stimulated right to the moment that you want to go to sleep You will not fall asleep that way if your Go Go Go and then you drop into bed and lie there and wonder why you're not sleeping or you pass out then you wake up at 3 in the morning, well guess what? That's why so changing your evening routine is so important Another thing, few things, to look at and things we look at here at Parsley Health have to do with nutrient balance, inflammation and cortisol

So we actually do a 4-point saliva test here looking at cortisol over the course of the day, I can't tell you how many people have high evening cortisol that is keeping them awake at night A quick hack for your cortisol is if you're going to bed after 11 pm you are probably staying awake for this evening cortisol spike Think about that witching hour, that midnight energy that some people get between 11 and 12

For most people they get a little bit of a cortisol boost and cortisol can keep you awake, that's your main stress hormone So what you want to do is go to bed before that Tt can be game-changing for people, I kid you not, game-changing, to go to bed at 10:00 instead of 10:30 or 10:30 instead of 11 Sometimes just moving it back but that 10 pm

mark, I promise you if you're sleeping 10 pm to 6 am you may have a completely different sleep

You may have deeper sleep, longer sleep, more solid sleep, go into more full complete sleep cycles A lot of people because they're going to bed too late end up having this more disrupted sleep and a less complete sleep and if you're just at 11 to 7, you could wake up feeling exhausted whereas 10 to 6 you could wake up feeling great So try it, that's a great experiment to run on yourself And then the last hack that I have is my favorite, like, life hack I swear to God, supplements is magnesium Magnesium glycinate

Not magnesium citrate which will make you poop, not magnesium oxide which will also make you poop Make sure people say oh is this magnesium chelate All that chelate means is they have the magnesium ion attached to something else The question is, what is that something else? You really got to read the fine print on the back parsleyhealthcom/store, if you go to our store you'll see our magnesium, it's the magnesium I take every single night, I take 2 which is 200 milligrams, you can safely take more

Some people take 3 or 400 milligrams, I take 200 milligrams and it just helps me have a deeper sleep Magnesium is nature's anti-anxiety medication, it helps relax sooth muscle, so it can actually help, for some people, lower their blood pressure a little bit It can relax the nervous system, it is so great for relaxing tight muscles, it's a natures relaxation method, okay, it's just magnesium We don't get enough of it in our diet and it's really important to get the right kind and the right dose so just don't go by whatever random magnesium off the shelf Some of them are formulated for very different purposes and that's okay

Other magensiums you might be using as a laxative which might be great and safe if that's what your doctor has prescribed, but I highly recommend magnesium glycinate you can get at parsleyhealthcom/store So, it's a quick one today but we're talking about sleep and we're talking about biohacking and how every single one of us is really hacking our health or we should be hacking our health every day We've had sort of a lifestyle foisted upon us, I would say in the past ten years, the iPhone came out in 2007 can you believe that? And we really changed the way that we live In some ways that is awesome, but in other ways it's really disrupting our natural mechanisms So if I have to summarize everything that you can do for biohacking your sleep: sleep in complete darkness including all those ambient lights around the room

Stay cool, 60 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit Try putting on a pair of warm socks so feet staying warm, that can help, studies show Get a routine, that screen free 30 before bed so that you're avoiding screens, avoiding blue light, doing your meditation, stretching, really calming down the nervous system so your body's ready to go to sleep Avoid caffeine, especially in the afternoon Most of us are slow metabolizers, only one caffeine first thing in the morning if we're going to do it

Get moving, make sure that you're exercising or moving on a daily basis Lots of research showing that helps sleep Making sure to hack your sleep cycle, so going to bed a little bit earlier to avoid that evening cortisol spike or coming to Parsley Health and working with us to test your cortisol throughout the day and see if you're somebody with high nighttime cortisol and then we can help you with managing that And then finally, magnesium glycinate I take 200 milligrams at night myself to help have a deeper sleep and relax the nervous system

So that is your biohacking sleep, it's a lot but again, we're gonna have blog post up on those so sign up for our newsletter and if you would like to work with us that parsley health, do not forget to visit parsleyhealthcom/connect you can set up a free 15 minute call, it's consultation call, it's not medical advice, we can't get that to you without being a patient but it's one of our expert membership advisors and can really answer any of your questions, talk to you through how we work, what we do and help you decide if membership is right for you We have centers in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco and we have two memberships and we have a sale going on right now that is if you're watching this in real time and you are live, we're finishing up our Cyber Monday, Black Friday or Thanksgiving weekend whatever you wanna call it, sale, and it is $150 off ourannual membership and it's $50 off our annual assessment So whichever one is right for you check out our website parsleyhealthcom/join you can learn about our memberships and how we work and parsleyhealth

com/connect if you've been thinking about it, now's the time Just schedule your free call, it's 10 minutes of your life You're going to learn how we work with you, what we do and for those of you who follow me on Instagram personally you'll see I've been posting today about not being afraid to go to the doctor So many of us wait until it's too late ,we wait until we're sick, we wait until we need all those medications to engage with the doctor The point is, start now, engage with someone who knows you, engage with someone who cares about youand is going to look at your whole life the way that we do at Parsley Health

That's extremely rare by the way, average doctors visits is 15 minutes, at Parsley it's an hour So we really take a very different approach here and you deserve that We think about what we spend money on and how it maybe contributes to ill health or how it's not necessarily contributing to our health Invest in a doctor and don't be afraid to go You're not gonna get told something horrible is wrong with you, that's in the movies

We've all been a little bit brainwashed or when you were a kid and you were getting a shot and it was scary, it's not scary it's actually really fun and really validating of what you're doing right, to talk to a doctor and learn a little bit more about yourself so parsleyhealthcom/connect to sign up for a free call with one of our membership advisors And don't forget we have a sale going on until midnight tonight if you're live, otherwise please write to us and let us know if you hacked your sleep If you have any other tips we'd love to hear them and hopefully this little biohacking sleep session, it is helpful and you guys dream beautiful deep dreams tonight All right, bye





Dave Asprey

Sleep Technologies