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Welcome to the first installment of our three-part series on sleep issues, focusing on the hidden roots of insomnia and how understanding our body’s complex system can pave the way to better sleep. 

If you’ve been tossing and turning at night, this series is for you, struggling to find the peaceful slumber that once embraced you effortlessly.

Why Can’t I Just Sleep? The Misunderstood Struggle


Many of us have experienced nights where sleep seems like a distant dream. You might have tried everything from counting sheep to turning to over-the-counter aids, yet the elusive state of rest remains just out of reach. This widespread issue often leads us down a path of frustration and confusion, questioning why we can’t sleep like we used to.

The initial thought might be to blame it on the usual suspects: the caffeine in your afternoon coffee, the stress of a project deadline, or perhaps the changes in your body as you age. While these factors undoubtedly play roles in sleep quality, there’s something deeper at play, a complex interplay within our body that needs to be understood.

A Deeper Look Into Our Internal Systems


Our bodies are composed of 12 organ systems, each playing a critical role in our overall health and well-being. The five most commonly connected to sleep disturbances are the digestive, nervous, endocrine, reproductive, and respiratory systems. My book, The Deep Blue Sleep—A Roadmap to Fall Asleep and Stay Asleep Naturally goes into great depth into this subject.

Imagine these systems as interconnected neighborhoods within a bustling city. Just as a city relies on the smooth operation of its neighborhoods, our bodies rely on these systems functioning harmoniously. As we age, these systems require more maintenance – much like an aging house – to prevent them from “falling apart.” This maintenance is crucial for preventing a myriad of stubborn health issues, including sleep problems.

Case in Point: Lizzy’s Story


Consider the story of Lizzy, who struggled with sleep issues for almost a decade. Initially attributing her restlessness to life’s usual stressors – from family responsibilities to the onset of perimenopause – Lizzy discovered through a holistic health approach that her sleep disturbances were deeply rooted in digestive system issues. 

By addressing and healing the inflammation in her gut, not only did Lizzy’s sleep improve dramatically, but she also experienced unexpected benefits, such as weight loss and an overall increase in happiness.

Lizzy’s story is a testament to the interconnectedness of our bodily systems and their impact on sleep. 

It highlights a crucial lesson: by understanding and nurturing these systems, particularly as we age, we can address the root causes of our sleep issues.

The Pervasive Issue of Stress


Central to the discussion of sleep issues is the concept of stress. Not just the mental or emotional stress we often acknowledge but, more critically, the physical stress that disrupts our body’s natural balance. 

This physical stress triggers a reaction in our body that can significantly impact our sleep, a phenomenon we’ll explore in greater depth in the next post of this series.

Stay tuned for our next blog post, where we’ll dive into the stress reaction, how it affects our sleep, and practical steps you can take to mitigate its impact. By understanding the complexities of stress and its relation to our organ systems, we’re one step closer to reclaiming the restorative sleep we once knew.

In the meantime, consider what maintenance your own “body’s city” might require. Are there systems within you that need more attention? Reflecting on this could be your first step toward better sleep and overall health.

Stay with us as we continue to unravel the mysteries of sleep and how you can harness the power of your body’s intricate systems to find peace in the night once again.

If you’d like support to sleep well at night in Boulder, Colorado or worldwide by telemedicine, make an appointment for a free consult or initial session. 

[Continue to Part 2: The Stress-Sleep Nexus]

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