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  1. You fall asleep without problems, but in the middle of the night, you wake up and toss and turn from side to side in an attempt to fall asleep again. What causes nighttime awakenings and how to deal with them? Causes of Waking up at Night There are many reasons why people wake up at night, both external and internal. Common external causes include street noise, snoring partner, plenty of light in the bedroom, improper temperature (too warm or too cold), pets in the bed, an uncomfortable mattress or a child who woke up and came to your room. The internal causes of sleep are also varied and depend on many parameters. Gender and Age The older a person becomes, the more often he/she suffers from interrupted night sleep. Older people often sleep during the day and wake up in the middle of the night. Young women have nighttime awakenings associated with the menstrual cycle: just before the onset of menstruation. Pregnant women wake up at night due to many reasons: swollen legs, backache, frequent urination, heartburn, and fetal movement. Nightly awakenings can torment women when menopause occurs - due to fever, heart palpitations, sweating, stress, and anxiety. Diseases and Medications Talk with your doctor if you have apnea during sleep. Chronic pains, such as arthritis or fibromyalgia, also often cause night awakenings. Despite the fact that everyone wakes up sometimes to go to the toilet, if you wake up due to frequent urge to urinate, you should pay attention to this and consult with your doctor. Diabetes, diseases of the thyroid gland, kidney, lung, and cardiovascular system can also cause night awakenings. Taking medications such as beta-blockers and diuretics can also affect your sleep. Other reasons Stress, depression and anxiety disorder are often accompanied by insomnia and sudden night awakenings. When to Start Worrying If you periodically wake up in the middle of the night, this is not necessarily a sign of a disease or disorder. To understand when to start worrying, doctors advise applying the rule of three. If sudden wake-ups occur three times a week, last at least 30 minutes and repeat for 30 days, you should visit a doctor. What to Do If You Cannot Fall Asleep? There are several ways to help cope with nightly awakenings on your own. Don’t spend more time in bed. Some people think that the more time they spend in bed, the more time they will sleep. In fact, this is the worst thing you can do if you have insomnia. On the contrary, you should instead spend less time in bed. For example, go to bed an hour later than usual, and get up at the same time as always. This may seem illogical, but it really works. Here are some more ways to cope with insomnia. Don’t sleep. If you sleep during the day, it takes hours from your night sleep. But if you really want to, you can take a nap for no more than 20 minutes until 2 pm - this should be enough to rest and gain strength. Limit your intake of alcohol and nicotine, fluids, and heavy meals. Also, give up physical activity for at least three hours before bedtime. All of this can trigger a sudden night awakening. Don’t consume caffeine eight hours before bedtime. Caffeine not only prevents you from falling asleep but can also cause a night awakening. Don’t lie in bed if you cannot fall asleep. Get up, walk around the room, do something quiet and calm in dim lighting. Go back to bed only when you feel sleepy. Don’t look at the clock. When you consider how many hours are left until the alarm bell rings, you are nervous and worried, which, in turn, prevents you from falling asleep even more.
  2. Salt is also known as sodium chloride (NaCl), which is 40% sodium and 60% chlorine, these two minerals perform different functions in our body. There are many different types of salt, for example, table salt, pink Himalayan, marine, kosher, stone, black, and many others. These salts are different in taste, texture, and color. The difference in composition is insignificant, around 97% is sodium chloride. Some salt varieties may contain small amounts of calcium, selenium, potassium, copper, iron, phosphorus, magnesium, and zinc. Iodine is often added to it. From time to time, salt was used to preserve food. A large amount of this seasoning inhibits the growth of putrefactive bacteria, due to which products spoil. Regular table salt undergoes considerable processing: it is crushed and cleaned of impurities and minerals. The problem is that the ground salt sticks together in lumps. Therefore, various substances are added to it, for example, food emulsifier E536, potassium ferrocyanide, which is harmful to our health. Unscrupulous manufacturers do not indicate this substance in the composition on the label. But it is possible to determine its presence by a bitter taste. Sea salt is produced by evaporation and purification of sea water. In composition, it is very similar to ordinary salt, the only difference is in a small number of minerals. But since the sea waters are heavily polluted with heavy metals, they may also be present in sea salt. Salt is not only the largest dietary source of sodium but also a flavor enhancer. Sodium binds water in the body and maintains the right balance of intracellular and extracellular fluids. It is also an electrically charged molecule that, along with potassium, helps maintain electrical gradients across cell membranes, that regulates ion-exchange processes in the cells of the body. The more sodium in our bloodstream, the more water it binds. Therefore, blood pressure increases (the heart must work harder to push the blood all over the body) and the tension in the arteries and various organs increases. How salt intake affects health Everyone knows that sugar is harmful to health. And what do we know about salt? Unfortunately, you can make an analogy and say that salt is the second sugar. Information about its harm is not as common as the harm of sugar. And this is due to the fact that salt has no direct connection with weight gain and obesity. The consequences of the use of excessive amounts of salt for a long time does not affect the appearance of a person, but they will appear later. For decades, research and reputable health care organizations have suggested the need to reduce salt intake. The American Heart Association sets the level of 1500 mg of sodium per day. This amount of sodium is contained in about one teaspoon or 5 grams of salt. However, the majority of the adult population consuming at least twice as high as these norms. The number of deaths from cardiovascular diseases associated with the consumption of more than 1000 mg of sodium per day in 2017 was estimated at 2.3 million people - 42% of coronary heart disease and 41% of stroke. Eating a large amount of this food supplement causes an increase in blood pressure and increases the risk of stroke and heart disease, especially for people with hypertension which is sensitive to salt. It is also known that an excessive amount of sodium in the body leads to leaching of calcium and may cause a decrease in bone density, or osteoporosis. Both of them can lead to chronic back, wrist, elbow, and foot pain, as well as problems with teeth. Why Does Salt Addiction Arises? Lack of salt is just as dangerous as an excess of it. Its deficiency causes a strong craving for salt, and can also be a sign of illness. Let's take a look at several reasons that cause the desire to consume salt. 1. Dehydration To maintain the body, it is necessary to control the fluid balance. If its amount in the body falls below the permissible limit, then comes a desire to eat something salty. 2. Electrolyte imbalance In our body fluids play the role of a transport system, they carry the necessary minerals. Sodium, which is found in salt is an electrolyte, is one of the vital minerals. In the case of electrolyte imbalance, there are possible negative effects such as headaches, fatigue, low energy level, apathy, bad mood, excitement, nausea or vomiting. 3. Addison's disease This is a rare disease of the adrenal cortex, resulting in a decrease in the amount of vital hormones produced, primarily cortisol. One of the symptoms is salt craving. 4. Stress Cortisol, called the stress hormone, helps control blood pressure and causes the body to respond to stressful situations. A study found an inverse relationship between the amount of sodium and cortisol in the body. The more sodium, the less this hormone is produced in stressful situations. That is why in a tense, stressful period appears crave for salt and salty foods. The body in this way tries to reduce the production of cortisol.

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