"In the jungle, the mighty jungle, the lion sleeps tonight..."
Even the lion, the king of the jungle needs rest time. Interestingly the lion sleeps between 10-20 hours a day. Isn’t it quite astonishing that animals know instinctively how to project manage, how to conserve energy and how to make the best use of their own personal resources. We, on the other hand are inclined to forget to bring the concept of rest into our lives and in our modern day 24/7 culture, real rest has become elusive. We may think we are resting when we are sitting on our bottoms. However, with the television in the corner of the room, a laptop on our knee, a phone in our hand and a mug full of our chosen caffeine or other stimulant, are we really resting in the true sense? Is it any wonder therefore that we can’t even sleep properly these days? Most of us will have experienced difficulties with sleep onset and also getting good quality continual sleep. Sleep problems are becoming a bit of an epidemic across the western world. You can read some of our top tips for a good night's sleep here.
Working under the functional medicine umbrella, we recognise sleep as one of the fundamental functional pillars when it comes to health. Sleep is when our bodies heal, repair and are restored. During the day, our cortisol levels should change with sunrise and sunset. Ideally, they should be higher in the morning and gradually come down across the day with lower levels in the evening to prepare our bodies for sleep. However, imagine a body which is out of balance and which is producing too much cortisol in the middle of the day and/or in the evening. This is becoming all too common a problem these days as we are overstimulated, not just from our exposure to electronics and the internet but being part of a culture that puts pressure on us to work in the evenings , checking emails etc. So we feel we have to keep going when our natural rhythms need to prepare the body for sleep.
Imagine what would happen if lions lived their lives the way many of us do, without adequate time of rest. There would probably be a lot of hungry and angry lions wandering about and let's face it we don't want to come face to face with a 'hangry'l ion!! Lions spend the majority of the day resting which in terms of their survival makes perfect sense. They expend a lot of energy when they hunt so if they were to move around during the day when they don’t need to they would waste a lot of their energy and end up creating more work for themselves by having to hunt more regularly. Lions rest because they know they need to. So what can we learn from lions?
Lions teach us that periods of rest can help us to be productive when we need to be. A lack of rest and adequate sleep impacts our work lives, relationships, mood, hormone balancing, blood sugar, libido, adrenal and thyroid function, immune system and so the list goes on..... in other words every aspect of our health. It is as necessary for our own survival as it is for lions. So how do we find rest in the modern world?
Our top tips
Finally, do whatever you need to, to incorporate patterns of rest into your day. What you find restful might be completely different to another person. Whether you find rest in a hobby like knitting or singing, do something that helps you relax. Your body will thank you for it.
1. Pukka Bamboo Reusable Travel Cups £8.99 -
These have been a firm favourite since they launched last year. They would make an ideal Secret Santa gift as they come in a range of colours and who doesn't drink tea or coffee?
2. Booja Booja The Gourmet Selection £17.79 -
If you haven't tried Booja Booja you are seriously missing out! This selection contains 20 perfect dairy free truffles in 6 different flavours. A beautiful gift or perfect alongside coffee at the end of a dinner party. We also have fine de champage £9.95 and hazelnut £7.35.
3. Spacemasks - £15 -
Sometimes you can be so busy that taking time out just doesn’t seem possible. This is where your Spacemask comes in. You are about to encounter Interstellar Relaxation. Within minutes of putting on your Spacemask you will feel it warm up and start to mellow your tired eyes and face. The soft jasmine smell will help to transport you away. Somewhere between Jupiter and Andromeda. The perfect antidote to festive overindulgence!
4. Back, Neck and Shoulder Massage £28 -
Who couldn't use a massage to recover from the stress of Christmas? Make getting through January that little bit easier for someone you love with a voucher for a relaxing massage.
5. The Lumo Diffuser £79.99 -
A firm favourite the Lumo looks beautiful and fills your home with the scent of gorgeous essential oils. It can be set for 2, 5 or 10 hours and has a number of light colours to choose from. We also have the Petal diffuser - £49.99 and the Elephant diffuser - £55 which is ideal for little ones.
6. Pukka Tea Caddies £9.99 -
Tea caddies in every colour of the rainbow. These beautiful ceramic and bamboo tea caddies would be a welcome addition to any kitchen. Each comes in it's own wee box making it very easy to wrap. Why not pair with a box of tea for the perfect gift?
7. DoTerra's Favourites Trio - £30
Presented in a gorgeous reusable tin these three oils are must haves through the winter months. Balance to keep you grounded through the chaos, OnGuard to support your immune system and Breathe to help you take it all in!
8. Kaerlig Beauty Soaps in Red and Blue - £8.99
Locally produced in Aberdeenshire these luxurious hand soaps are a pleasure to use. Chose from Red scented with grapefruit and bergamot essential oils. Or Blue scented with spearmint and Lime essential oils.
9. Natural Facelift Facial £40 -
Feel 100 years older by the time Christmas dinner is over? Turn back time with our Natural Facelift Facial. Using Japanese massage and facial reflexology points to smooth fine lines and plump the skin.
10. Christmas Morning Hamper £30 -
Everything you need to start the day on Christmas Morning: Primrose's Kitchen Raw Carrot, Apple & Cinnamon Muesli; Pukka Gorgeous Earl Grey; Clipper Roast & Ground Arabica Decaf Coffee; Struan Scottish Heather Honey; The Fruit Tree Organic Fruit Jam; Amphora Festive Candle.
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“I did Nutritional Therapy with Beverley and it was life changing. I highly recommend it!” Allison Blakely (Glasgow)
44 St Andrew Street, Aberdeen, AB25 1JA
Tel: 01224 969637
Opening Hours: Sun- Mon: Closed Tue to Sat: 10am-4pm
Late night appointments available on Thursday evening on request.