No Sleep Til’…This Shit is Over?

This quarantine has proven a stressful time for everyone. A record number of people have filed for unemployment, parents are now forced to homeschool their kids (God bless…), and the number of those diagnosed with the Corona Virus is steadily increasing along with the number of deaths. Needless to say, many people are losing sleep despite the proximity to their beds. So I thought this would be an opportune time to reiterate the importance of sleep and share some tips to Go The Fuck To Sleep.

I remember cramming for exams in school feeling secure in the notion that our brains retain information better after “sleeping on it.” Whether that is true or not, the restorative properties of sleep are endless; improved mood, memory, learning, cognitive function, weight management, etc. etc. So let’s try to catch up on some sleep now that we are forced to spend this time at home because I know that I have definitely been tossing and turning like a motherfucker.

Everyone knows it’s best not to fall asleep on a full stomach because it leaves us feeling fat and sluggish, yet starving in the morning! Falling asleep on a full or even partially full stomach can majorly disturb sleep and especially our metabolism. According to Kristen Eckel-Mahan, PhD, “The enzymes involved in fatty acid oxidation, they’re highly circadian. They know when they’re supposed to be metabolizing glucose.” In other words, when we eat late, our metabolic organs process sugars differently, causing our body to store fat more easily.

Eating late also seems to result in more nightmares, especially late consumption of carbs. But according to Harvard Medical School, “eating a large meal, especially a high-carbohydrate meal, could trigger night sweats because the body generates heat as it metabolizes the food. Also, gastroesophageal reflux (GERD), caused by lying down with a full stomach, may trigger symptoms that wake you up.” So while it seems like a causal relationship, eating late actually only disturbs our sleep so much that we wake up more frequently from our dream state, which only causes better recollection of our dreams (good or bad).

sleep on table

If you’re like me, not eating late is somewhat of an impossibility because of my work schedule (or lack thereof, lately). So if you find yourself unable to give yourself at least two hours before bedtime to stop shoving food in your mouth, at least try and sit upright for 20 minutes and then sleep on your left side. Our colons work in a clockwise fashion, so laying on our left side allows gravity to pull gastric juices and undigested food through the colon toward the rectum (this is why colonics begin and end on the left side). Laying on the right side is counterintuitive for digestion and can lead to heartburn because stomach juices can splash back up into the esophagus. Additionally, laying on your left side can help drain your brain of cerebral waste called interstitial waste. According to Healthline, “This brain cleanse may help reduce your risk of developing Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other neurological diseases.”

Something else that is scientifically proven to delay or even prevent the onset of Alzheimers is meditation. I will speak more to my experience with meditation at a later date, but I wanted to share a useful meditation app I discovered last year. Insight Timer is a free meditation app that has an entire section dedicated to sleep. The sleep section contains Soundscapes, Bedtime Tales, Sleep Meditations, Sleep for Kids, and Sleep Music. I love listening to rain and thunder or some of the bedtime tales when I am unable to drift away.

For those who need supplemental assistance, my favorite supplement brand (Metagenics) has a supplement designed for occasional sleeplessness called Benesom. It contains magnesium, valerian root, melatonin and other herbs proven to assist in sleep. (Receive 20% off here).

Metagenics sleep supplement

In the end, nothing really puts me to sleep like a boring ass book or some super dense material I’m forcing myself to learn. I suggest always having that book on your nightstand. It may take you a few years to get through, but it will at least earn you some quality ZZZs while making you smarter.

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Corona Virus

While everyone is busy stockpiling toilet paper, my ass is more concerned with stockpiling beneficial bacteria in my system to deal with the threat of COVID-19. If I run out of TP, I will rely on a good ole’ shower or squirt bottle to clean my ass. What’s most important is that we keep our immune system as equipped as possible to deal with the unknown (ie viruses mysteriously contracted from bats).

Did you know that probiotics are the frontline of your immune system? Probiotics are the beneficial bacteria discerning what gets absorbed into the bloodstream, so it’s important to have a diverse population of bacteria in your gut to combat not only the shit we eat from China, but also airborne illness. In our very own bodies, human cells are outnumbered by microbial cells ten to one! So it’s pretty cool that we are now able to curate which bacteria we replenish with thanks to the advent of probiotics.

This is why I always recommend including Metagenics UltraFlora Immune Booster in your mix of probiotics (I suggest switching strains every month). Immune Booster provides targeted probiotic support for healthy nasal, sinus and respiratory function. I always breathe better when I take Immune Booster and God knows we can use some help with respiration lately, especially if you’ve been inhaling your own CO2 wearing those useless face masks.

immune booster

Your immune system and overall health begin in the gut. When your immune system is strong, you don’t need to mean mug the next person that coughs or sneezes on the train. Probiotic support goes only as far as your lifestyle. The best time to start a probiotic regime is after taking the garbage out with a refreshing colonic. It’s also critical to feed your probiotics their favorite food: fiber! Make sure to flood your body not only with probiotics, but tons of fruits and veggies that are also chockfull of Vitamin C and other health-boosting vitamins and minerals.

Hopefully, this pandemic is also forcing us to closely analyze our food systems. The Corona virus originated at a “wet market” in Wuhan, China, where both live and dead animals are sold. Let’s just say this market probably wouldn’t receive a C Grade from the NYC Department of Health. Try eating as local and organic as possible. And there has never been a better time to consider a [mostly] vegan diet!

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For Shit Sake

Nothing really gets me going like grown adults shitting their pants. Luckily, my clients feel comfortable sharing their juicy stories with me and lucky for you, they don’t mind me sharing them. One day, I will compile them all into a neatly sized bathroom book, For Shit Sake, because everyone can use a little motivation when it comes to getting their shit done.

Most of these stories have nothing to do with me, but this first story makes an example of a client who proudly does not follow my advice. To be clear, following my advice is always optional. You decide whether you want to feel like a sexy beast or the complete opposite the days following your colonic. For obvious reasons, the individuals in my stories will be referred to as Jane and John Doo. John Doo barely survived the smell of his own shit to tell the following dramatic tale:

I had gone to see Jen for help with some digestive issues. This was my first colonic.  It was a Friday afternoon when I left her office; I felt hydrated and “clean” from the inside.

She had told me for the first 2-3 days to take it easy on the heavy foods I generally consume and to try and eat a lot of salad and vegetables rather than a lot of fats and meat. So I ate a modest salad that first day. 

The next morning my wife and I decided to take the dog to the dog park. We played at the park and then decided to go to one of our favorite outdoor restaurants for brunch on this sunny 88F day.

So, one thing about me….a doctor once told me I have “compliance” problems (I do not obey instructions well, or at all). Arriving at brunch I decided that one day of rabbit food was plenty for my gut. Back to the old grind, my friend…

I ordered the liver pate, Thai mussels with a coconut cream sauce and crusty French bread along with a meat and cheese board. I washed all of this delicious food down with several cold pints of beer on this perfect summers day. It was GLORIOUS! Next, it was time to head to the pool for some continued day drinking!!

We got back to the lobby of the building and my stomach was a little “grumbly.”  Waiting for the elevator took a little longer than usual because of everyone going up to the pool. By the time I got into the elevator, I was pretty sure I needed to use the bathroom. By the time the elevator got to the 25th floor (where I live) I desperately needed to use the bathroom. I barely managed to get the key into the lock before my body decided it had had enough of all the decadent food I indulged in. I did not just sort of poop my pants….I wasn’t just turtle-heading… I was exploding in my pants like a one year old as I stand in the doorway next to my oblivious wife and dog. At this point, panic sets in.

I make it into the hallway and run to the bathroom with the dog (who thinks I’m playing) right behind me.  I am not playing. I get into the bathroom and slam the door shut as I frantically try to remove my jeans and underwear. I am still crapping my pants here. I rip my pants and underwear off, so now I am shitting on the bathroom floor trying to maneuver my shit canon to the toilet. I finally make it to the toilet. This episode is literally bringing out the worst in me. Mixed emotions of humiliation and anger quickly surface as I continue erupting on the toilet with what feels like no end in sight. A massive amount of foul smelling diarrhea is covering the floor and my underwear (those are going in the trash). It was then that I noticed brown paw marks on the floor and realized that I’ve taken the dog down with me.

In my haste to get my pants off I did not see him enter the room and as my diarrhea bomb was exploding in every direction, he got caught in the direct line of fire. The dog moves closer to me to exact his revenge and violently shakes the foul liquid from his fur. In doing so, he shotgun peppers everything in the bathroom. The homage to not following instructions is now all over the bathroom wall, the shower curtain and even the ceiling. It is everywhere!!!

My wife, totally unaware of all that has transpired is still getting ready for the pool. She calls into the bathroom, “Dennis and Sandy are on there way down here {they live on the 36th floor} for some drinks and we will all go to the pool together.”

This is obviously not something I am supportive of at this very moment in time. I have just now, finally stopped erupting enough to waddle to the door, open it and yell “NO! They can’t come over, PERIOD! We have to meet them at the pool.” Not expecting this kind of aggressive response from me, my wife rounds the corner for an explanation, takes one good look at my gaunt white face and replies, “Okay.”

The victorious dog, seizes the opportunity to escape the “shit show” and tries to make a run for it out of the bathroom. I manage to grab his glistening wet fur, drag him back and slam the door.

As I turn around, I catch a look at my mortifying reflection in the mirror. My face, matching the new wallpaper, is completely peppered with wet, brown diarrhea! My poor wife at this point only knows that for some reason, either on purpose or by accident, I have decided to rub diarrhea all over my face and for another unknown reason, the dog, which was dry 2 minutes ago, is now wet…..

She calls into the bathroom, “I am going to the pool.”

Two hours later, I am bathed, the dog is bathed, the bathroom is bleached. The shower curtain is in the trash, I have a load of wash going, I am less one pair of Armani underwear and I am at the pool with a water…..

The lesson……follow Jen’s instructions, or explain to your wife why you shit the dog and your face.

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