It’s 5am on a cold Monday morning and you’re walking the dog because the wife told you to. You have a breakfast meeting across town in 2 hours but you need to sleep, and it shows.
Why we need sleep
Your new job has you burning the candle at both ends, up until all hours modifying your already-modified designs, again. Meanwhile, the wife has her hands full with the new baby and you’re functioning on autopilot to get by.
All you can think of is that Bill Gates thought that sleep is for lazy people, and you dare not be that. The wife is exhausted and cries a lot. So does the baby.
There’s a hollowness ringing inside your head all the time. You can’t remember things so much anymore, and your whole body feels itchy but there aren’t any obvious reasons for it. Your eyes are dry and scratchy, and the skin on your face has started to sag, beginning with the black circles under your eyes.
You seem to have picked up every bug and sniffle for miles around, and are grumpy (and hungry) all the time. You think you’re functioning well under pressure, but your work is slipping and you’re just too tired to see the details in the little things anymore.
Deep down where you can’t see it, your organs have kicked their emergency survival mode into gear, and you suddenly develop high blood pressure. Your immune system is compromised and you feel as if you’re going to have a heart attack if things don’t get back to normal soon.
This is the face of sleep deprivation, a condition that exists because we drive our bodies to limits they were never made to endure. If survival at exhaustion level is the mode in which we have to live, then sleep is the antidote for that exhaustion.
What happens when we sleep?
Studies show that sleep deprivation suppresses our immune system, decreases the body’s inflammatory response, and makes it easier for infections to take hold. When we sleep, our bodies get a chance to rest and repair the organs and systems that keep us alive:
The Role of Collagen in Sleep
Collagen plays a vital role in protecting our immune systems and is found throughout the body, including in the eyes, teeth, bones, joints, skin, and blood vessels. When our bodies get a lot of good rest (such as when we have REM sleep patterns and are deeply asleep), the human growth hormone and collagen production are stimulated.
When our lifestyles dictate that we perhaps don’t rest as much as we should (or could), collagen production diminishes. We start to see the effects immediately in the condition of our skin, which gets dry, wrinkled, and tired-looking very quickly.
Our bodies begin to shut down “unnecessary” functions like regulating metabolism and insulin. The repair process that is supposed to restore our bodies back to optimal performance levels cannot continue, and our DNA strands begin breaking.
In autoimmune skin conditions (like psoriasis, eczema, and rosacea), stress is a direct trigger for disease onset, including chronic conditions like diabetes, arthritis, liver disease, and more. In fact, the onset of skin conditions are often the reason autoimmunity is diagnosed, and are a precursor to other, more serious, conditions.
Gut health is absolutely key to your immune system health. Roughly three quarters of the human immune system resides in the stomach, so a compromised gut is naturally going to compromise your immune system. This is why diarrhea is listed as one of the Covid-19 symptoms to look out for.
Collagen synthesis is a vitally-important process in healing, reparation, and maintenance of the immune system and the gut. Ignoring tell-tale symptoms of an irritated gut may lead to further irritation or infection – which only upsets the immune system and causes more stress.
If you can’t change your stressful lifestyle, it’s time to change your diet and supplement intake. Obviously, no supplement or diet can produce all the required substances nor replace the vital repair tasks performed while we sleep, but essential nutraceuticals like collagen and Ubiquinol (when taken correctly) boost our body’s ability to produce these substances naturally.
For example, our marine collagen supplement (which is derived from fish, not mammals) contains glycine and proline, two amino acids that help regulate acidity. Water-based marine collagen repairs and restores intestinal linings, preventing stomach acid from leaking and causing reflux, heartburn, or ulcers.
The human body only requires about 500mg of collagen daily. Under stressful conditions, collagen is produced in significantly lower-than-needed amounts, as are all your body’s much-needed nutrients.
In this instance, the average human would only produce roughly 300mg of collagen daily. That’s about 60% of recommended daily allowance, meaning only 60% of your body can use today’s collagen it worked so hard to produce.