The Saudis, with Washington’s GPS support, continue to target school busses, massacring children as an element of the terror assault against the population, trying to break Yemeni resistance by murdering children on school busses. Washington continues to supply the Saudis with the weapons to target school buses and the diplomatic support to protect the criminal Saudi regime from war crimes charges. The European cowards turn their heads. Even Russia is silent. Putin’s “partnership” with the criminal state of Saudi Arabia is more important.
I’m not sure the whole picture about this bill, and how “powerful” it may be, but maybe this is another step in the deconstruction of the deep state, for which 9-11 was a major operation. It was introduced by Senator Richard Blumenthal (D), and is cosponsored by a roughly equal number of Ds and Rs (and one I (Bernie)). Q implies that this is not what it seems, and states,
“Sponsor? Not what you think.”
Maybe the real sponsor is beyond anyone in the US Congress.
Urging the release of information regarding the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks upon the United States.
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
August 21, 2018
Mr. Blumenthal (for himself, Mr. Cornyn, Mr. Schumer, Mrs. Gillibrand, Mr. Murphy, Mr. Menendez, Mr. Grassley, Mr. Markey, Mr. Booker, Mr. Rubio, and Mr. Sanders) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs
September 26, 2018
Committee discharged; considered and agreed to
Urging the release of information regarding the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks upon the United States.
Whereas tens of thousands of pages of documents relating to the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks upon the United States remain classified by the Federal Government;
Whereas the Federal Government may properly classify and control access to information in order to protect sources and methods of collecting critical information in defense of the country and the people of the United States;
Whereas the contents of these documents are necessary for a full public understanding of the events and circumstances surrounding the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks;
Whereas the decision to maintain the classified status of many of these documents prevents the people of the United States from having access to information about the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, including the involvement of certain foreign governments in the attacks; and
Whereas the people of the United States and the families of the victims of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks deserve full and public disclosure of the events surrounding the attacks: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That it is the sense of the Senate that—
(1) documents related to the events of September 11, 2001, should be declassified to the greatest extent possible; and
(2) the survivors, the families of the victims, and the people of the United States deserve answers about the events and circumstances surrounding the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks upon the United States.
A new startup is hoping to cash in on a disturbing trend that has been growing in popularity among the ultra-rich. It is a treatment in which blood from young people is injected into the veins of older people — seriously.
While it has been reported that this practice has been popular underground in Silicon Valley for years now, this is the first company to officially offer the service to the public. Stanford Medical graduate Jesse Karmazin is the founder of Ambrosia Medical, which plans to open its first clinic in New York City in the next few months.
Ambrosia was involved in the first clinical trials in the US that tested the effects of this treatment.
The news that 1 in 4 senior citizens is taking prescription medications for anxiety most likely comes as no surprise. After all, it’s rare to find an age group unaffected by anxiety these days.
Not only does the current research suggest more seniors are using antianxiety drugs, but it also asserts they are increasingly at risk of becoming drug-dependent, particularly when medications like Valium and Xanax are prescribed to address anxiety and sleep issues.1
Beyond the risk of dependency, long-term use of a particular class of drugs called benzodiazepines (also known as “benzos”) can raise your risk of broken hips, car crashes and falls. In my opinion, there are better, natural ways to treat anxiety than prescription drugs.
Many people effectively manage anxiety with the Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT); I also will share other approaches I recommend for anxiety sufferers of all ages.
Researchers Evaluate Use of Benzodiazepine Drugs Among Seniors
Research published in JAMA Internal Medicine by medical professionals from the University of Michigan, University of Pennsylvania and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) evaluated benzodiazepine use by low-income senior citizens who participated in a Pennsylvania program designed to help with drug costs.2
The U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse notes benzodiazepine drugs are commonly abused and asserts about one-third of opioid overdoses also involve benzodiazepines.3
Given the fact most older adults who use benzodiazepines obtain their prescriptions from a primary care physician or other non-psychiatrist practitioner, the research zeroed in on only those seniors receiving prescriptions from someone other than a psychiatrist.4
The research centered on analyzing the medication-use patterns of 576 older adults who received their first benzodiazepine prescription between 2008 and 2016.
Notably, the team discovered 152 seniors continued to hold a current or recent prescription for the drugs one year later. As such, they concluded 1 in 4 seniors is consistently taking medications such as Valium or Xanax to address anxiety and/or sleep issues. Additional findings include:5,6
As compared to minorities, Caucasian patients were four times more likely to have moved toward long-term use
Seniors whose initial prescriptions were written for the largest number of pills were found to be more likely to become long-term users of benzodiazepine drugs
For every 10 additional days of medication prescribed, a patient’s risk of long-term use nearly doubled over the next year
As compared to short-term users, seniors who took benzodiazepines long term were not any more likely to be diagnosed with anxiety or depression
On average, the participants were 78 years old when they received their first benzodiazepine prescription, even though the drugs are generally not recommended for adults over age 65
Very few of the seniors had received psychiatric, psychological or psychosocial care in the previous two years
What Are Benzodiazepines and Who Uses Them?
As a class of psychoactive drugs known for their tranquilizing effects, benzodiazepines enhance the effect of an inhibitory neurotransmitter called gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in your brain, making it useful for treating the following medical conditions:7
You may be given a benzodiazepine drug prior to the administration of a presurgery anesthetic or to induce amnesia in conjunction with uncomfortable medical procedures. Benzodiazepine drugs are known for their anxiolytic, anticonvulsant, muscle-relaxing, sedative and sleep-inducing properties.
A few of the brand name drugs within the benzodiazepine class that are commonly prescribed to seniors include Ativan, Halcion, Klonopin, Valium, Versed and Xanax. As mentioned, these drugs are easily abused.
In the video above, presented by the nonprofit advocacy group Benzodiazepine Information Coalition8 in honor of World Benzo Awareness Day 2018, former users of these medications share how they came to realize the negative effects prescribed benzodiazepines had on their lives.
Health Care Providers Lack Education About the Risks Associated With Benzodiazepine Drugs
The researchers say their findings point to a lack of education about the potential negative effects of these drugs, as well as a need to ensure both health care providers and the public are aware of the risks associated with taking them.9 About the results, lead study author Dr. Lauren Gerlach, a geriatric psychiatrist at the University of Michigan, stated:10
“This shows we need to help providers start with the end in mind when prescribing a benzodiazepine, by beginning with a short-duration prescription and engag[ing] patients in discussions of when to re-evaluate their symptoms and begin tapering the patient off [the medication].
We also need to educate providers about effective nonpharmaceutical treatment alternatives, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, for these patients.”
Dr. Brian Keefe, a psychiatrist and medical director at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, New York, who was not involved in the research, affirms the study as a much-needed reminder for doctors everywhere. “Clinicians, including psychiatrists, continue to prescribe benzodiazepines to this [older] population at an alarming rate.”
They do so, he notes, despite the fact, “multiple studies over many years now have consistently demonstrated an elevated risk of falls, and falls with fracture in seniors who take these medications.”11 Another concern raised by the researchers relates to the improper application of benzodiazepine drugs.12
They noted long-term users were more likely to report sleep problems despite the fact benzodiazepines are not recommended for long-term use as sleep aids. To the contrary, these drugs may actually worsen sleep the longer they’re used.
Dr. Harshal Kirane, psychiatrist and director of addiction services at Staten Island University Hospital in New York City, suggests benzodiazepine overuse is “a silent epidemic.” He believes the research “underscores a persistent reliance on narcotic medications for resolution of symptoms, such as insomnia, that can be improved by numerous other healthier options.”13
As such, Kirane asserts physicians must do more to help guide patients toward safer, nonpharmaceutical solutions for sleeplessness and other common complaints. Similarly, senior study author Dr. David Oslin, professor of psychiatry with Penn Behavioral Health and staff physician with the Philadelphia VA Medical Center, stated:14
“This study provides strong evidence that the expectations set out by a provider when they first write a new prescription carry forward over time. When a physician writes [a prescription] for 30 days of a benzodiazepine, the message to the patient is to take the medication daily and for a long time.
This expectancy translates into chronic use, which, in the long run, translates into greater risks like falls, cognitive impairment and worse sleep.”
Got Anxiety? EFT Can Produce Rapid Results
While prescription drugs are often thought to be the main remedy for anxiety, there are many natural alternatives. One of the best “treatments,” in my opinion, is EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques). It’s easy to use and can produce rapid and long-lasting results.
Energy psychology techniques such as EFT can be very effective in helping you reprogram your body’s reactions to the common, unavoidable stressors of everyday life that fuel anxiety.
Having been around since the 1990s, EFT has been described as acupuncture without needles. This is so because both modalities are based on the premise that vital energy flows through your body along invisible pathways known as meridians. EFT combines fingertip tapping over particular meridian points in your body with verbal affirmations you speak to yourself out loud.
The technique is so simple and it can be performed nearly anytime and anywhere. You can easily perform EFT on your own, or for more complex issues, you may want to seek the help of a qualified EFT therapist. Having had an EFT specialist on staff at my natural health clinic, I can testify to the positive effects this therapy has had on countless individuals, myself included.
EFT works wonderfully to ease anxiety and insomnia — two nagging concerns affecting many seniors — as well as a variety of other issues related to emotional and physical health for people of all ages. Based on my experience, EFT is, without a doubt, the most effective clinical strategy I have ever used for anxiety. It is most certainly better and safer for you than pharmaceutical drugs.
In the video above, EFT practitioner Julie Schiffman demonstrates how to use tapping to relieve stress and anxiety. If, on the other hand, sleeplessness is a bigger concern for you, check out “Julie Schiffman Discusses Tapping for Insomnia.”
The researchers suggested cognitive behavioral therapy as an alternative to prescription drugs, and this can be used in conjunction with EFT in addressing anxiety.
Keep in mind that talking about anxiety does not necessarily relieve the bodily effects associated with it. EFT addresses both your body and your mind, making it, in my opinion, an important adjunct to, or in some cases a replacement for, traditional talk therapy.
Consider Antianxiety Drugs Only as a Last Resort
Sadly, as validated by the current research, many primary care doctors are quick to prescribe benzodiazepines to older adults as a first line of treatment for anxiety disorders.
In many cases, drugs may be the only option offered. Because some seniors have been trained up under the notion of “doctor knows best,” they may be more likely to accept a prescription medication than to investigate alternative solutions.
After all, it likely seems easier to swallow a pill than to change one’s habits and thoughts, especially at older ages. That said, it’s vitally important for caregivers and family members to become educated about the dangerous side effects of antianxiety drugs like benzodiazepines and to advocate for their loved ones.
Given the potentially grave consequences, it’s up to these folks to investigate the options and direct their senior to healthier, safer nondrug alternatives. In case you are not yet convinced benzodiazepines are dangerous, consider a 2014 study published in BMJ suggesting use of these drugs puts you at a 50 percent greater risk of Alzheimer’s disease. The study authors stated:15
“Benzodiazepine use is associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease. The stronger association observed for long-term exposures reinforces the suspicion of a possible direct association, even if benzodiazepine use might also be an early marker of a condition associated with an increased risk of dementia.
Unwarranted long-term use of these drugs should be considered as a public health concern.”
Another body of research suggests benzodiazepines and other hypnotic drugs are associated with a fourfold increase in all-cause mortality and a 35 percent greater risk of cancer among those prescribed higher doses.16 Once you start, getting off these drugs can also be challenging. The difficulty increases the longer you take them.
“Benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome”17 is characterized by anxiety, concentration problems, hand tremors, headaches, irritability, muscular pain, nausea, palpitations, panic attacks, perceptual changes and sleep disturbance, among other troubling effects. Tapering off from higher doses can also trigger psychotic reactions and seizures.
As you can see, upon discontinuing them, these drugs have the potential to trigger side effects that are the same as the original symptoms they were attempting to address. Rather than deal with the uncomfortable after effects, it seems far wiser to dig into the root causes of your anxiety and to consider nondrug options first.
Try These Nondrug Options for Dealing With Anxiety
As with most chronic health issues, you will need to take a holistic approach to resolving anxiety. From the onset, you’d be wise to evaluate the following areas to ensure you are taking care of your body and mind at a foundational level. For starters, you may consider:
Addressing stressful people and situations — A common cause of anxiety relates to stressful people and situations. While this area can be challenging to address, you won’t regret any steps you take to reduce your anxiety levels by limiting your exposure to people and situations that “push you over the edge” emotionally.
Breathing properly — While it may sound funny to suggest breathing as a solution, you’d be surprised how many people breathe in such a way as to put their health in jeopardy.
Engaging in regular exercise — Some of my favorite forms of exercise include high-intensity interval training, stretching, yoga, walking and weight training. The four-minute Nitric Oxide Dump workout is particularly beneficial for boosting your health and sense of well-being.
Getting the right nutrition — Lowering your intake of gluten, processed foods and sugar is recommended for people of all ages and levels of health, and most especially for anyone suffering from anxiety.
Your body needs healthy (preferably grass fed, organic) food to function optimally. Some of the top antianxiety foods include blueberries, dark chocolate, fermented foods, leafy greens and turmeric.
Optimizing your gut health — A healthy gut is vital to your overall health. If you have a sluggish or overactive digestive system, your immune system is going to be negatively affected. To ensure your body has the right balance of healthy gut flora, get more fiber into your diet and consider taking a daily probiotic supplement.
Tackling common nutrient deficiencies — Even if you try to eat healthy, chances are you may have a hidden nutrient deficiency that is interfering with your health.
You may want to check your diet for deficiencies in key nutrients like animal-based omega-3s, magnesium and vitamin D. For more guidance in this area, review my article on “The Most Common Nutrient Deficiencies.”
In addition, since many seniors are tied to their TVs, tablets and other electronic gadgets and may not understand the implications of electromagnetic field (EMF) exposure, it’s important to become educated.
For now, be advised excessive free radicals triggered by low-frequency microwave exposure from wireless technologies have been linked to anxiety, depression, memory changes and sleep disturbances, as well as a number of other conditions known to affect older adults.18
At a minimum, avoid keeping electronic gadgets next to you while sleeping and never sleep with the lights or TV on. A final area to consider is potential toxic exposures. Anxiety is a common symptom of toxic mold exposure, so you may want to check to see if there’s any kind of pattern going on in your life that may indicate this.
For example: Do your anxiety symptoms improve when you spend time away from your home or office? Do you feel better outdoors than indoors? Whatever steps you take to pursue nondrug alternatives for dealing with anxiety will be well worth it.
If you are already taking a benzodiazepine medication, I hope you will consider talking to your doctor about whether it’s time to discontinue it. Act today to ensure you won’t become one of the growing number of senior citizens hooked on antianxiety medications.
Healthy sleep consists of several stages, and you cycle through these stages four to five times during the nightly sleep cycle. As a result, you’re progressively descending into deep sleep and ascending toward lighter states of sleep several times, and this cycling is tremendously important, both from a biological and psychological perspective.
During stages 1 and 2, your brain remains active as it begins the editing process where decisions are made about which memories to store and which to discard. During stages 3 and 4, you enter into a deeper, almost coma-like state, during which the actual physiological cleansing and detoxification processes in the brain1 take place.
Your brain cells actually shrink by about 60 percent during this deep sleep phase. This creates more space in-between the cells, giving your cerebrospinal fluid more space to flush out the debris. Lastly, in stage 5, you enter rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, where dreaming takes place.
All of these stages are important, and it’s important to cycle through them enough times each night — especially the deeper stages, and the longest and deepest REM cycle typically begins around six hours after falling asleep. If you only sleep five or six hours, you completely miss this important stage, and when deep sleep stages are missed, your brain gets clogged with debris associated with Alzheimer’s disease. You also forgo the psychological benefits of dreaming.
Even if you accept the idea that sleep is important, you might not consider dreaming to be very high on your list of biological imperatives. Alas, you would be wrong. Dreaming actually serves a number of important functions. (Later I’ll also address the potential benefits of lucid dreaming, i.e., when you become aware that you’re dreaming, while dreaming.)
Rubin Naiman, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and a sleep and dream expert, suggests thinking about the stages of deep sleep and REM sleep as different kinds of nourishment. “Sleep and dreams are a bit like water and food to the psyche, to the soul, to the mind,” he says, and for health, both are necessary. According to Naiman:
“Dreaming is essential. In recent years, there’s been a lot of research underscoring the fact that dreaming has functions very different from sleep. I think of the dream as being a digestive and assimilating process for information …
If we think about all of the information that we’re exposed to in the course of a single day — the conversations, the things we read, the things we see, hear and think about, and the things we just experience all-around through our senses — all that information can be understood as something we consumed.
What happens in REM sleep is all of this information that we’ve metaphorically swallowed is digested and assimilated. It’s sifted through. Again, in its wisdom … the brain decides what it’s going to keep and what it’s going to let go of.
As this information is digested, that process of assimilation shows up metaphorically in the dream, in the images of the dream. The bottom line here is that if you don’t dream well, it has a profoundly negative impact on your memory. In a deeper sense, it’s as if you stopped growing psychologically. You stopped adding to who you are.”
Dreaming Benefits Creativity and Protects Mental Health
Professor Matthew Walker, Ph.D., founder and director of the University of California Berkeley’s Center for Human Sleep Science and author of “Why We Sleep: The New Science of Sleep and Dreams,” takes it a step further, noting that “Dreaming is essentially a time when we all become flagrantly psychotic.”
However, while this may sound disconcerting, it’s actually a good thing, as it both unleashes creativity2 and protects your mental health. When dreaming is suppressed by chronic sleep deprivation, that’s when you run a very real risk of experiencing a psychiatric breakdown.
In a very real sense, when you forgo sleep for extended periods of time, your brain enters the REM cycle while you’re awake. In other words, your brain is dreaming even though you’re awake, resulting in wild hallucinations, delusions, mood swings and paranoia. While this is perfectly healthy during sleep, it becomes extremely problematic during wakefulness.
Less extreme cases of sleep deprivation typically involve short-temperedness, moodiness, illogical thinking and irrational behavior. The reason for this is because activity in your prefrontal cortex — the “CEO of your brain” that rules rationality and logical thinking — is dampened. If you frequently feel emotionally off-kilter or struggle with a short fuse, chances are you might manage your emotions a whole lot better were you to get more sleep on a nightly basis.
Deep Sleep Aids Problem-Solving and Provides Life Meaning
Research3,4 suggests non-REM sleep and REM sleep contribute to creative problem-solving in different albeit complementary ways. During non-REM sleep, your brain replays memories that are thematically related and organizes new information into useful categories or thematic schemas.
Then, during REM sleep, your brain starts to combine these categories, creating novel points of connection between them, however farfetched or unlikely — hence the “impossible” aspects of many dreams. On the other hand, this random linking of information is also how many new inventions are conceived.
As old and new memories are integrated to form a new whole, new possible futures are also imagined. This is what you actually perceive as “the action” of your dream. The sum total of these processes also allows you to extract meaning from life events.
Enter Lucid Dreaming
But what about lucid dreaming? As mentioned, lucid dreaming is when you suddenly become aware that you’re dreaming. It’s like waking up, albeit you’re still in the dreamscape. When this happens, provided you don’t fully awake but stay in the dream, you have the ability to shape and alter your dream at will.
While this may sound like a novel concept, an estimated 20 to 30 percent of the population are natural lucid dreamers, and research5 has found about 77 percent of adults will experience it at least one spontaneous episode of lucid dreaming. Medical News Today reports:6
“The very first record of lucid dreaming appears to feature in the treatise ‘On Dreams’ by the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle. In it, he describes an instance of self-awareness during a dream state.
‘[If] the sleeper perceives that he is asleep, and is conscious of the sleeping state during which the perception comes before his mind, it presents itself still, but something within him speaks to this effect: ‘The image of Koriskos presents itself, but the real Koriskos is not present,’ he wrote …
For some people, it occurs spontaneously. However, others train themselves to start dreaming lucidly, or to become better at it … Other people may be able to influence their own actions within the dream, or parts of the dream itself …
An experienced lucid dreamer might be able to ‘go on an adventure’ and interact with people and things in a way that they may not be able to do in real life.”
Is Lucid Dreaming Real?
In the featured video, Walker discusses lucid dreaming, noting that researchers have been able to objectively confirm — using fMRI scanners — that when someone claims to be doing something in a lucid dream, they are in fact doing it.
In one study, participants were asked to clench their fist, which lit up certain parts of their brain. They were then asked to go to enter a lucid dream state, and clench their fist again, which resulted in the same brain regions being activated.
Other recent research7 cited by Scientific American8 discovered that when you are lucid dreaming, your eye movements are near identical to the eye movements you make when you’re actually viewing something. Called “smooth pursuit” or “smooth tracking,” these eye movements do not occur when you’re simply imagining an object or scene. According to the authors:
“Our findings suggest that … the visual imagery that occurs during REM sleep is more similar to perception than imagination. The data also show that the neural circuitry of smooth pursuit can be driven by a visual percept in the absence of retinal stimulation and that specific voluntary shifts in the direction of experienced gaze within REM sleep dreams are accompanied by corresponding rotations of the physical eyes.”
Therapeutic Aspects of Lucid Dreaming
According to Denholm Aspy, a lucid dreaming researcher at the University of Adelaide in Australia,9 lucid dreaming is not only fun,10 it can be quite therapeutic, especially if you struggle with phobias, recurring nightmares and/or post-traumatic stress disorder.
It can also improve quality of life for those with physical disabilities that prevent mobility, and improve athletic performance or physical rehabilitation after injury through dream rehearsals. On the other hand, it’s best avoided if you have certain mental health problems. Schizophrenia, for example, can be exacerbated by lucid dreaming. Aspy tells Medical News Today:11
“If you can help someone who’s having nightmares to become lucid during that nightmare, then that gives them the ability to exert control over themselves or over the nightmare itself. [L]et’s say you’re being attacked by someone in a nightmare.
You could try to talk to the attacker. You could ask them ‘Why are you appearing in my dreams?’ or ‘What do you need to resolve this conflict with me?’ Some people take on superpowers or special abilities, [so] they can fight back against the attacker … [or] escape …
If a person has a particular phobia, then their lucid dream environment … provides an interesting opportunity to do things like exposure therapy, where you gradually expose yourself to the thing you’re afraid of, in an attempt to gradually overcome that fear.”
Lucid Dreaming Techniques
Can you learn lucid dreaming? Yes. Aspy claims more than half of the people he’s taught his lucid dreaming technique to are able to have lucid dreams within one week.12 Before you even begin your lucid dreaming experiment, it can be very helpful to simply become more aware of your dreams in general, by keeping a detailed dream journal.
Each morning, write down everything you can remember from your dream or dreams. Aside from training your dream recall, dream journaling can also be helpful by showing you any recurrent themes, which later can act as triggers to help you realize that you’re dreaming.
Mindfulness meditation also trains your mind to remain aware, which can transfer into your dream state, allowing you to become aware that you’re dreaming. Following is a quick summary of three lucid dreaming techniques that have been scientifically identified as being the most effective:13,14,15
1. Reality testing — Perform reality checks during your waking state. Every couple of hours, ask yourself, “Am I dreaming right now?” Over time, this habit will enter your dreams as well, cluing you in to the fact that, yes, you are dreaming. At the same time, perform a physical reality check.
For example, you might try putting your hand through a wall, or look at an object, look away and then look back. When you’re dreaming, items will tend to look blurry and/or look different each time you look back at them.
2. Mnemonic induction — Before bed, repeat to yourself “Tonight, I will notice that I am dreaming.” Consistently repeated over time, your mind will become accustomed to the idea of becoming lucid while dreaming.
3. ‘Waking back to bed’ — This technique, which I do not recommend, involves setting an alarm to wake yourself up after six hours of sleep. After staying awake for 15 to 20 minutes, you then go back to sleep. The idea is that you will then go right in to REM sleep, and if you intend to remain lucid, it will be easier to do so.
The drawback is obvious — you’re disrupting your sleep, which will have health consequences. So, I cannot in good conscience recommend this strategy. It doesn’t seem worth it to disrupt your sleep cycle just for a chance of lucid dreaming. Instead, work on the first two techniques.
Potential Adverse Effects
While Aspy has not found lucid dreaming to impinge on sleep quality or produce adverse effects in those who are otherwise mentally stable, at least one recent study16 found that “Use of deliberate induction techniques was positively associated with psychopathology and sleep problems.”
What’s more, when participants continued with regular lucid dream induction for two months, it resulted in an increase in “dissociation and schizotypy symptoms.” According to these authors, “We conclude that lucidity should not be considered as necessarily suggestive of well-being; lucid dreaming may be positive or negative, depending on lucidity characteristics. Additionally, deliberate lucid dreaming induction may harbor negative long-term risk.”
Also keep in mind that sleep paralysis typically occurs during REM sleep (to keep your body from acting out the dream), and if you enter a lucid state between dreaming and wakefulness, you may find yourself unable to move. This can be very distressing, depending on the nature of your dream. Once you wake up fully, the paralysis will dissipate.
Regardless of whether you feel like getting into lucid dreaming, remember that sleep is a foundational aspect of good health, and so is dreaming. Most adults need about eight hours of sleep each night, and again, your deepest REM sleep doesn’t occur until you’ve been asleep for about six hours. So, if you’re only sleeping five or six hours, you’re missing out on this important sleep cycle.
Valerian root (Valeriana officinalis), which was prominent as early as the time of the ancient Greeks,1 is one of the many herbs you can utilize if you’re experiencing sleep and anxiety-related problems. Learn more about valerian root today, including growing tips and side effects to watch out for.
What Is Valerian Root?
Valerian root, a perennial plant that’s a member of the Valerianaceae family, is also known by other names, such as garden heliotrope, setwall, Valerianae radix (Latin), Baldrianwurzel (German) or phu (Greek).2 Its origins can be traced to Europe and Asia, although you can now find it in North America. The valerian root plant can reach heights of 3 to 5 feet, and produces paired leaves and fragrant white or light pink flowers.3,4 The root itself, however, has an odor that most people deem unpleasant.
Out of the 250 known plants in the Valerianaceae family, V. officinalis is the most used variety in the U.S. and Europe. Valerian supplements are available nowadays, which are manufactured from dried valerian root extracts, or from the plant’s roots, rhizomes (underground stems) or stolons (horizontal stems). Dried valerian roots are also made into teas or tinctures.
Valerian root’s health benefits may stem from the interactions of materials in the plant, and not just because of a singular compound or group of compounds. According to the National Institutes of Health’s Office of Dietary Supplements, manufacturers often look for the following substances as a “standard” for classifying valerian root extracts:5
Volatile oils including valerenic acids
Valepotriates or esters of short-chain fatty acids
Valerian Root Benefits You Should Consider
If you’re having trouble sleeping or just want to improve your sleeping patterns, consider using valerian root since this is one of its main health benefits. This herb’s reputation as a sedative goes back about 2,000 years, as traditional medicine has highlighted valerian root’s capabilities to induce relaxation and sleep.6 These effects may occur because of compounds present in the plant, namely:
Isovaleric acid — It’s known to inhibit involuntary muscle contractions.8
Hesperidin and linarin — These are two antioxidants that possess sedative abilities.9,10
Modern studies support these claims. Results from a March 2000 Pharmacopsychiatry article showed that valerian root may assist in improving sleep-related parameters such as depth of sleep, speed of falling asleep and overall sleep quality.11
In another study published in Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior, a 400-milligram valerian root dose promoted better sleep in 24 young, middle-aged adults experiencing sleeping difficulties. Additionally, half of these subjects reported “perfect sleep” after taking the valerian root dose.12 Other studies also highlighted that valerian root may decrease time needed to fall asleep, and boost sleep quality and quantity.13,14,15,16,17
Other Health Benefits Linked to Valerian Root
Valerian root is also known for its benefits in fighting anxiety. Studies have suggested that valerian root may help address generalized anxiety disorder or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), whose main symptoms include anxious behaviors,18,19 and may aid in alleviating anxiety caused by stressful situations.20,21,22,23
Women suffering from hormonal issues may also consider taking valerian root to address hot flashes (linked to menopause),24 premenstrual syndrome (PMS)25 and painful menstruation (dysmenorrhea).26,27 Other issues that valerian root or valerian root extracts may target include:
Parkinson’s disease — A December 2015 animal study revealed that mice with Parkinson’s disease had improved behavior, reduced inflammation and more antioxidants in their bodies after being given valerian root extract.28
Restless legs syndrome (RLS) — In this March 2009 study, people who took 800 milligrams of valerian root daily for eight weeks showed improvement from symptoms and reported less daytime sleepiness.29
Valerian Root Uses You Should Know About
Ancient Greeks and Romans used valerian for medicinal purposes, and well-known Greek physicians like Hippocrates and Galen highlighted the plant’s possible health-boosting effects. During the 16th century, health concerns such as nervousness, trembling, headaches and heart palpitations were also alleviated using valerian root.30
The Scottish used valerian root to address indigestion, while the Irish utilized the plant to combat tuberculosis.31 Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners also relied on valerian root to help relax smooth muscles and target gastrointestinal hyperactivity.32
The book “A Field Guide to Western Medicinal Plants and Herbs” highlights that valerian root can also be utilized as a nerve tonic and may assist in addressing headaches, irritability, depression or despondency.33 Valerian root extracts and essential oil are utilized to flavor foods and beverages, too.34
Growing Valerian Root at Home
When growing valerian root, ensure that it is cultivated somewhere with access to sunlight and water, and is frequently exposed to light moisture.35 You may sow valerian root seeds during spring, when soil temperature is a bit warmer, or purchase plant seedlings or divisions. However, valerian root seedlings, which are quite slow-growing, may need increased protection from fast-growing weeds that can crowd out the tender plants.36
Valerian plants bloom during the early summer, and become fragrant, especially in the late afternoon.37 To properly grow valerian root plants, follow these instructions from Garden Guides:38
Take premoistened commercial potting mix and fill a planting tray or container. Avoid overwatering or increasing the plant’s moisture since it may inhibit seed germination.
Get valerian root seeds and sprinkle them lightly over the potting mix. Using your fingers, lightly push the seeds into the mix. Don’t cover valerian root seeds entirely, since they’re tiny and may not get enough sunlight if they are planted too deep.
Lightly spray the surface of the potting mixture with water to allow seeds to settle. With clear plastic, cover planting tray and place in a warm and sunny area. Just make sure that the tray isn’t directly exposed to sunlight, because there’s a possibility that it will heat the plastic and burn the seeds.
The seeds should be exposed to warm and humid conditions when they are covered with plastic to help them germinate. Constantly check the potting mix, and mist the soil if it feels dry.
Once valerian seedlings emerge from the soil, loosen the plastic. You can remove the plastic sheet entirely if the seedlings reach 1 to 2 inches tall. Take some of the healthiest seedlings to be repotted in a 3- or 4-inch container.
Just like during germination, place the valerian root seedlings in a sunny area. Should you have limited sunlight, use a grow light as a substitute.
Once the plants are too big for the containers, move them to larger pots with good drainage holes at the bottom. Always remember that the bottom of the valerian seed plant mustn’t be exposed to huge amounts of water.
Cut the flower stalks on the valerian root plant if you’re only growing them to get the roots. This helps the plant focus on root growth only and prevents it from seeding. If you allow the plant to retain flowers, they may self-sow quickly and will then be hard to remove from your backyard.39
The best times to harvest valerian root would be during the spring and fall, since this is when the roots’ medicinal compounds are most potent. You can harvest them by digging up the plant, along with the roots, and allowing the valerian root to dry in a dark, indoor location. While some people argue that freshly dug valerian roots smell like dirty socks, allotting some time for the roots to dry will help the odor dissipate.40
Try This Valerian Root Tea Recipe Today
If you want to benefit from valerian root’s health-boosting properties, you can steep the roots and make tea, just like in this recipe:41
Valerian Root Tea Recipe
1 teaspoon of valerian root per cup (approximately 3 grams)
Pour the hot water onto the valerian root.
Leave to infuse for 15 minutes.
How to Store Valerian Root
Storing valerian root at home for future use is easy. Mother Earth Living suggests keeping it in airtight containers in a cool and dark place. Before storing, make sure the root is done drying and is quite crisp, and the best parts of the roots are cut off.42
What Are Valerian Root’s Side Effects?
While most studies have discovered that this root doesn’t trigger severe adverse side effects, you must still be cautious of how much valerian root you take.43 Headaches, stomachaches, irregular heartbeats, uneasiness,44 increased feelings of excitement and dilated pupils45 have all been linked to valerian root intake, especially when higher doses are taken. Daytime sleepiness is also a possible side effect.46
Valerian root may predispose a person to insomnia, and even withdrawal symptoms once consumption is stopped. Don’t take valerian root if you’ll be driving or operating heavy machinery, as it can affect your thinking and reaction abilities.47
Valerian root may negatively interact with alcohol and trigger drowsiness.48 It can interact with other herbs, supplements and medications such as narcotics, antidepressants and anti-seizure medicines, as well:49,50
Benzodiazepines like Xanax, Valium, Ativan and Halcion
Barbiturates or central nervous system (CNS) depressants like phenobarbital (Luminal), morphine and propofol (Diprivan)
If you have liver-related problems, consider avoiding valerian root or take it with extreme caution under the watchful eyes of a doctor.51 This plant has been linked to rare cases of liver injury.52,53 Pregnant or breastfeeding women, as well as children under 3 years old, must avoid valerian root as much as possible, because of the lack of assessment regarding the herb’s potential effects on them.54
Know the Ideal Valerian Root Dosage for Your Condition
When taking valerian root, I advise starting slowly — the smaller the dose, the better. Ideally, take the lowest dose of valerian root required for your particular condition. While some studies have used valerian root dosages between the 400- and 900-milligram (mg) range, taken 30 minutes to two hours before bedtime, American Family Physician recommends a root extract of 300 to 600 mg, or an equivalent dose of 2 to 3 grams of dried valerian root soaked in 1 cup of water for 10 to 15 minutes.55
As a reminder, avoid greatly increasing your valerian root intake all at once. Higher amounts may cause unwanted effects like sleeping difficulties, and may increase anxiety and energy levels. A 2006 Phytotherapy Research study revealed that an 1,800 mg dose of valerian root raised feelings of anxiety among the study subjects.56
As always, to fully determine how much valerian root you should be taking and to prevent adverse effects, consult your physician or a holistic nutrition specialist.
Valerian Root’s Health Benefits Are Admirable, but Exercise Caution Always
Despite its unpleasant odor, valerian root may be useful in addressing sleep-related concerns or anxiety. Valerian root’s uses in traditional medicinal practices prove that its health benefits have been well-known for hundreds of years and may be useful in this day and age too.
The challenge with using valerian root, however, lies in its availability. Unless you have the resources to grow your own plants, you’ll have to do extensive research to find a reputable seller who can provide you with high-quality valerian root. The same problem may occur if you plan to buy valerian root supplements, teas, tinctures or extracts.
Some of valerian root’s side effects may disrupt proper function and everyday routines, so avoid consuming excessive amounts of valerian root, and check with your doctor first on the right dosage for your condition.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Valerian Root
Q: What does valerian root do?
A: Studies have shown valerian root’s potential in promoting better sleep, mainly because of substances such as valerenic acid, isovaleric acid, hesperidin and linarin found in the plant. Valerian root may also help ease headaches, heart palpitations, indigestions and gastrointestinal problems, as well as relax smooth muscles, and promote feelings of calmness.
Q: Does valerian root work against anxiety?
A: Yes. Studies have also shown that valerian root may play a role in addressing anxiety disorders and decreasing anxiety triggered by stressful scenarios.
Q: Is valerian root safe?
A: There are some side effects that have been linked to valerian root, so taking extra caution by consulting your physician before taking the herb is important. You may be predisposed to the following should you take high amounts of valerian root:
Increased feelings of excitement
This herb may negatively interact with certain drugs and herbal supplements. The following groups of people should avoid intake of valerian root as well:
People who need to drive or operate heavy machinery
People with liver-related problems
Pregnant or breastfeeding women
Children younger than 3 years old
Q: Where can you buy valerian root?
A: Valerian root and valerian root supplements may be purchased from health websites and retail sites, and even in some supermarkets. Make sure to do thorough research first before buying to ensure that you get a high-quality product made from real valerian root, and not a low-quality item that may cause more health problems.
The same principle applies to valerian root extracts or tinctures too and, as the book, “The New Healing Herbs,” reiterates, always follow instructions stated on the item’s label.57
The Khazarian mafia is planning a fake alien invasion after their most recent attempt to assassinate U.S. President Donald Trump failed, say Pentagon and CIA sources. The assassination attempt came in the form of a missile that was shot at Air Force One by an Israeli submarine, Pentagon sources say. “Life imitates art, as the hunt for red October may mean Israeli and cabal submarines are sunk. The October surprise may be bloody,” the sources add.
Pentagon sources explain that “the FBI probe into Kavanaugh will not only clear his name, but will morph into an attack on his paid accusers, the Democrats, and the deep state.” Furthermore, “Kavanaugh has 53 votes and may be confirmed on October 3, when Trump will send text alerts to all cellphones,” the sources add.
It is interesting in this context that the Swiss, French, and British branches of the Rothschild family have opened lines of communication with the White Dragon Society to inquire if it is not too late to surrender and accept South African-style truth and reconciliation hearings. Clearly, the very real prospect of military tribunals and firing squads has made them realize it really is going to be game over unless they do something.
We also got the following communication from “the head of the CIA’s clandestine services in xxx [redacted to protect source] working out of the U.S. Embassy from xxx-xxx.
“It regards the Rothschilds. My buddy is personal friends with Nathaniel de Rothschild, who lives a very quiet and discreet life in NYC. (They went to Harvard Business School together back in the day).
“It concerns Antarctica, where …
… Antarctica is opening up a WORMHOLE. Yes, there is an ‘opening’ to other dimensions down there. Due to the extremely high magnetic shifts going on in and near Antarctica, it’s literally ‘tearing a new fabric’ in the dimensional field. THIS is the reason why ALL those government leaders went down there. THIS is why they shut off Antarctica to the public and so forth. The public only gets 5% of the ‘story.’ And now you have the other side.”
The reason I share this with my readers is because the sender is quoting a CIA war criminal responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths, who is thus definitely one of the people fearing military tribunals. He is also connected to the Bush Nazi faction.
The other reason I share it with my readers is that when I went to visit the black-sun-worshiping P2 Freemasons in Italy, they showed me the technology they had to project miles-wide images into the sky. In other words, there is a very strong possibility that now that the Trump assassination bid failed, they might use holograms for the fake alien invasion scenario that Henry Kissinger once mentioned:
“Today, America would be outraged if U.N. troops entered Los Angeles to restore order [referring to the 1991 LA Riot]. Tomorrow they will be grateful! This is especially true if they were told that there were an outside threat from beyond [i.e., an “extraterrestrial” invasion], whether real or promulgated, that threatened our very existence…. When presented with this scenario, individual rights will be willingly relinquished for the guarantee of their well-being granted to them by the World Government.” Dr. Henry Kissinger, Bilderberger Conference, Evians, France, 1991 https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/kissingers-very-strange-remarks.8651/
Of course, there really is an existential threat for the Khazarian mafia, and that is from the people of the world rising in rebellion against their satanic debt-slavery tyranny.
You just can’t make this sort of stuff up, folks. Of course, for the satan-worshiping Khazarian mafia it must really seem like the world is ending, since they are losing power simultaneously around the planet.
Bolsonaro represents the Nazi/Zionist faction that has been looting Brazil’s resources and impoverishing its people, and so obviously they would be very scared of losing power.
Another top Khazarian, Hitler’s daughter Angela Merkel of Germany, suffered a huge blow to her already failing grip on power last week when the longtime ally and leader of her Party’s parliamentary group, Volker Kauder, was “sent packing after a surprise vote in the German Bundestag.” https://www.rt.com/news/439406-merkels-parliamentary-leader-vote/
Merkel’s slave-boy President Emmanuel Macron of France has also seen his support level fall below 20% and is facing the very real possibility of a military coup to annul his fraudulent election, senior French military sources say.
The Khazarian-mafia rogue state of Israel, too, is being forced to give up its plan to rule the greater Middle East and the world from Jerusalem and instead accept a two-state solution. Last week Russia deployed special military defenses to prevent any more planes from attacking Syria from either Europe or Israel. http://tass.com/defense/1023513
While this was happening, the U.S. military “removed Patriot missiles from Jordan, Bahrain, and Kuwait in a blunt warning that it may do the same to Israel,” Pentagon sources say.
The Khazarian mafia is also trying to keep in power by using its “carbon causes global warming” story as an excuse to form a world government. Their main instrument for this is the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which claims to have 195 member countries and is about to issue another alarming report. https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-45653099
All I am going to say about these people at this point is that if I paid out enough money, I could get 200 whores to say they love me, but that still would not make it true.
Donald Trump spoke for many in his UN speech last week when he said, “We will never surrender America’s sovereignty to an unelected, unaccountable global bureaucracy.”
However, this does not mean we do not need to urgently change how we run this planet. We are in the midst of the largest extinction crisis since the dinosaurs were wiped out by a meteorite 65 million years ago. This is not being caused by “global warming,” but rather by such things as the destruction of natural habitats, pollution, and overfishing.
The current Khazarian mafia-controlled Babylonian financial system is also sucking resources not only from the poor but also from the natural environment, as it feeds the black hole of all the world’s wealth being concentrated into the hands of a few hundred people.
In any case, as mentioned at the top of this report, the Swiss, British, and French branches of the Rothschild family have been in contact with the WDS recently. The Swiss representative said they know they have been defeated. If that is the case, the WDS expects to meet directly with members of this clan to negotiate, in a fully transparent manner, a transition for this planet away from Babylonian debt slavery via privately owned central banks. We will keep our readers informed of any new developments on this front.
This is badly needed. Last week, this writer asked a lady friend what she liked to drink so that I could have it ready for her next visit. She told me she liked Corona beer. I told her it was not available in the stores near my house. Then, the next time I started to surf the Internet, I was confronted for the first time with advertisements for Corona beer and links to online retailers selling it. The prime suspect is my Google-infected smart TV. What else are they spying on? My sex life?
(Natural News) It’s hard to believe that we’re already at the last quarter of 2018 – it really does seem as though time goes by faster and faster with each passing year. Politically speaking, 2018 has already been quite eventful, with President Trump working tirelessly to restore America and the liberals doing everything in their power to…