If you struggle with mental health you’re not alone. Mind states that 1:4 people in England have a mental health problem every year and as a result, it is likely that you are not sleeping well. This is because there is a bidirectional link between sleep and mental health problems, meaning one causes the other and is why those struggling with mental health can quickly fall into sleep deprivation.
The upside is that if you take steps to improve your sleep you will improve mental health. A key approach to loosen the grip of insomnia is to optimise the function of the Pineal Gland which plays a critical role in controlling the sleep/wake cycle.
The Pineal Gland
This tiny but perfectly formed cone-shaped gland sits deep in the brain between the two hemispheres. It is a vital cog in the sleep/wake cycle and resembles a pine cone, and is why it features in my logo. That it measures just ¼ inch or 0.5cm approximately does not diminish the importance of its role in your health and wellbeing.
Fascinating research in 1886 by Spencer and de Graff discovered the Pineal Gland has all the features of our external eyes (rods, cones, etc) and which respond directly to light, 1 and is perhaps why it is also known as the Third Eye. Recent research is suggesting that the
Pineal Gland gives us a sense of direction and is how migrating animals navigate on their incredible journeys, the inner compass.
The Pineal Gland has two primary functions
The Third Eye
Other qualities associated with the Pineal Gland are insight, enlightenment, intuition or gut instinct. The gut is directly connected to the brain via the Vagus nerve and is why I have coined the phrase the Holy Trinity when referring to:
The Pineal is toned during meditation and yoga practices. In his fascinating book, ‘Man in Evolution’, de Purucker 2 wrote that,
“whenever we have a hunch, the pineal gland is vibrating gently; when we have an intuition,
or an inspiration, or a sudden flash of intuitive understanding, it vibrates more strongly.”
What weakens the Pineal Gland?
The busyness of modern life is sustained by stress hormones which are meant to be released temporarily. Persistent, long term stress leads to excess stress hormones in the blood which prevent sleep. Furthermore, the body experiences insomnia as trauma, and produces yet more stress hormones which prevent sleep. Meet the catch-22 of stress and insomnia. Add to this western society’s stimulants of choice – nicotine, caffeine, sugar, recreational drugs – it is easy to see why adrenal fatigue – or energy debt – is reaching epidemic levels. This condition is usually diagnosed as M.E., Flu and Chronic Fatigue and perhaps even Long Covid. Despite the different names of the conditions, the cause is similar and is why I always focus on the individual client vs just the label given to the symptoms.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (“TCM”), practised for over 500 years, the kidneys are considered to be the seat of our life energy. The adrenal glands sit just above the kidneys and they work together to maintain hydration, blood pressure, stress hormones and blood health. The TCM philosophy teaches that we are born with a finite amount of life energy and it is up to the individual how quickly we use up that energy. Once it’s gone, it’s gone and our lifestyle choices can deplete or nurture/sustain that life energy. I love the elegant explanations of traditional wisdom that express what medical science is catching up on.
the Pineal Gland is sensitive to light and dark, and is how it controls the sleep/wake cycle. Dusk is the time that the Pineal Gland releases Melatonin and is what keeps us asleep during the night and daylight is the natural brake for the Pineal Gland to stop producing the sleep hormone Melatonin so you wake up.
Sound impacts the Pineal Gland, in particular vibration or humming. Think of the soothing hum of a bumble bee or a cat purring. Some clients have said they love the sound of the hoover to help them relax and sleep (each to their own!) Seriously, though, repetitive calming vibration soothes your nervous system and stimulates the Pineal Gland. Try the following simple breathing exercise to tone your Pineal Gland:
We live in an electromagnetic soup which researchers conclude impacts the Pineal Gland. 3 Sadly, this will only increase post-Covid, as we are plunged into the digital world and economy led by the insatiable appetite for Artificial Intelligence (World Economic Forum Fourth Industrial Revolution). 4 This drive, which is initially being promoted as a green campaign, will only service to disconnect us from nature, and our selves. We are part of nature, not a separate entity, and dis-ease develops through separation from nature.
Daniel Christian Wahl expresses this beautifully and eloquently, (4)
“For too long we have separated self form the world, culture from nature, mind from matter, lived the illusion of separation, that made us behave like masters rather than stewards of the Earth.”
Grounding minimises the impact of EMF on our body from surrounding tech (masts, tablets, smartphones, wearables). If the last year has taught us anything, it is the huge benefit to our mental health and wellbeing of being outside in nature. I would urge people to continue to do this as we begin to return to some semblance of ‘normality’
- Grounding Mats
as we spend more time on Zoom and in the electromagnetic smog, I recommend using a Grounding Mat that you can place on the floor where you’re working. I have been using mine for over a year. Sleepability has partnered with this niche UK company to bring you leading edge research and grounding kit for the home and outdoors. Check out their 5 minute video about why you need to add grounding tech to your home. You can order via this link for which I receive a few pennies – Groundology
- Epsom Salt Baths
Once a week, take a warm bath with a handful of Epsom Salts to relax, ground yourself and recharge your batteries. If you don’t have a bath, a foot soak will be just as effective.
Fluoride is a toxin on a par with arsenic and has the effect of calcifying or hardening the Pineal Gland, so it shrinks and cannot function. Fluoride is added to approximately 10-15% of the UK population’s tap water and is found in salt, fizzy drinks, fruit juices, tea, toothpastes, mouth washes, medication, Teflon coated pans and now Teflon-coated children’s clothing!
“Fluoride is likely to cause decreased Melatonin production and to have other effects on normal pineal function, which in turn could contribute to a variety of effects in humans.” (National Research Council 2006).”
As a side note, decay is an internal process. Some are more prone to the decaying process than others and which is influenced by our constitution and inherited traits, which is hastened by sugar (it is not the primary cause). There are plenty of natural toothpastes that are fluoride-free including Kingfisher and Ecodenta. Look out for toothpastes with Bicarbonate of Soda or activated charcoal which have superb cleansing and de-plaquing qualities. I have arranged 15% discount for clients with the Natural Dispensary. Contact me for more details.
Top Tips to cleanse & boost your Pineal Gland
For the roots branch approach to restore your sleep and mental health naturally, contact me for a confidential SOS Consultation or SleepBundle package.
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1 Mysteries Of The Pineal Gland | CSGlobe
2 de Purucker, G, 1977: ‘Man in Evolution’: Theosophical University PR, ISBN: 0911500553 (ISBN13: 9780911500554)
3 Sahai, A, 2020: ‘Pineal Gland: a structural and functional enigma’ – article
4 World Economic Forum: Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution
5 Atkinson, R, Johnson, K & Moldow, D, 2020: ‘Our Moment of Choice; evolutionary visions and hope for the future’: Astria
Books/Beyond Words – ISBN 1582707626 (ISBN13: 9781582707624)