Nutrition and sleep often go together when one is poor – the other one is often poor as well. Sleeping a lot is usually a sign of maybe feeling sad or depressed, and I don’t mean to say that you have a deep depression, but that’s how the body copes, the body wants to regenerate in that way. When you go to sleep, you must be thinking a certain thing, and then when you predict how you’re going to feel when you wake up, let’s say from a nap or sleep, you’re going to predict, you’re feeling a certain way. That’s your behavioral loop, your cue is maybe – I can’t take this, I just have so many things going on, I just need to close my eyes and then afterward, I’m going to feel balanced, peaceful, calm whatever the word is.
The problem is that action, the action of sleep isn’t sustainable, you can’t probably live that way, so you have to explore when you feel whatever it is that preceded the sleep, what else can you do to create that sense of calm, peace, completeness. You might write down 20 things, and you have to try them out, and it might be two or three things but I think a lot of times it just has to do with all of these things going on on your mind and feeling powerless, so getting them out of your head in some way and then finding strategies that help you feel a certain way, the perception of sleep, how you feel is going to be really important. In terms of not eating at all, that is probably, what happens when you get into the fight-or-flight response.
The blood flow goes to the brain, the heart, the lungs, and it goes away from the stomach and actually away from the reproductive organs because they’re not important quoting fight-or-flight response and so what you might feel is that you’re not feeling hungry at all, some people feel the opposite because the digestive system is not getting innervated with blood, so if you can figure out strategies that you’re not in this constant fight-or-flight and maybe it is I can bring up these meditation apps.
If you’re feeling that way and you can get out of the fight-or-flight, you can get into that rest and digest part that parasympathetic, there’s ways to activate what’s called the vagus nerve. Another great way to activate the vagus nerve is breathing, and it’s breathing from the belly as opposed to chest breathing, so if you put your hand on your belly, it’s weird to feel it first but breathing from your belly is a very quick, easy way to innervate the vagus nerve and to make your exhale longer than your inhale, that’s another important kind of aspect of it, so any way that you can get there might let the digestive enzymes go, may get you out of fight or flight. In the beginning, you’re going to have to keep telling yourself to do that until it becomes a habit, that’s where that habit loop comes in.