Rich Interconnectedness Between Alcohol and Sleep!
March 28, 2019 | No Comments | Greg Dawson
Have you ever wondered why some patients’ sleep is affected strongly by alcohol, while others isn’t? The interconnectedness between alcohol and poor sleep is a rich, important topic. Check out this clinical tip video for some “devil in the detail” that might surprise you!
- A couple of drinks helps with falling asleep but leaves you waking up 2-3 hours later?
- Even after a full meal, alcohol brings on big cravings for “bar food”?
- If I’m so relaxed from a few drinks, how is cortisol involved in the crappy night of sleep that follows?
- Regular drinkers’ pesky leg cramps and tight muscles need more than magnesium. Do you know what’s missing?
- And much more!
If you missed my hour-long video on Sleep Myths and Truths for Practitioners, you may catch the recording here.
If want a deeper dive after the video, some of these research references may be of interest and help:
- If you want a geek dive into this topic overall, this is a great resource (link).
- Regular moderate-to-heavy drinking increases cortisol in men and women (link). Heavy alcohol use, whether one-time or chronic, increases cortisol levels – and may be related more to the toxicity of acetaldehyde metabolites from alcohol and our varying ability to process/excrete it (link and link).
- Excessive intake of food (which can cause impaired sleep) following alcohol consumption is caused by hyperactivity of hypothalamic Agrp neurons (link).
- Noctural leg cramps and alcohol consumption (link and this clinical tip).
- Alcohol and GABA rebound and poor sleep (clinical tip).
- Dose-dependent impact on REM sleep (link).
I appreciate the opportunity to support your learning on these key topics!
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