Bouncing Back After a Poor Night’s Sleep

By Dr. Justin Marchegiani

Let’s face it, most of us aren’t having a perfect night’s sleep, every single night. Whether it’s an impending deadline has you crunching out work til the wee hours of the morning, a racing mind keeping you up, or a night of tossing and turning, most of us know what it’s like to go through life the day after a crummy night’s sleep.

Today I want to outline the best ways to bounce back after a poor night’s sleep, as well as provide you with tips to optimize your sleep quality on a nightly basis. Let’s dive in!

How to Bounce Back After a Poor Night’s Sleep

Get Outside: The best way to set your circadian rhythm (your body’s internal clock) is to get outside! Sunlight signals to the photoreceptors in your eyes and skin that it is day time and boosts alertness (and improves mood, which helps with sleep deprived grumpiness!). Take your shoes off and let your feet touch the earth. The electrical exchange of free ions from the earth are scientifically proven to lower inflammation and help cellular health, which is much needed after missing sleep.

Hydration: Sleep is when the body repairs both physiologically and psychologically. Muscles, bones, ligaments, neurotransmitters, hormones, and more are recycled and repaired during the night to keep us functioning optimally. When we miss a night of sleep, it’s crucial to support cellular health. One way to boost cellular health is to hydrate while replenishing minerals. Add trace mineral drops or even a high quality sea salt to your water. This helps optimize the cellular environment, prevents effects of dehydration, and curves appetite.

Caffeine: When you miss a night of sleep, you may be extra drawn to the coffee maker. Be cautious not to overcome caffeine, or else you may suffer the consequences when you hit the pillow that night. Stick to one or two cups of coffee, tops. 

Diet: Sleep deprivation does weird things to hunger hormones! Cravings can come on strong, while satiety may never seem to come. Don’t give in! Keep carbs low and eat protein and foods rich in healthy fats to assist your body during this time of physiological stress. 

Is your diet causing your insomnia? Click here for a consultation with a functional medicine doctor to start sleeping better tonight.

Immune Support: During a normal sleep cycle, the immune system fights to keep your body healthy. When you miss sleep, immune system function declines while inflammation increases. When you miss sleep, you’ll want to use supplementation to boost your immune system. Oil of oregano, probiotics, Immuno Supreme, and activated charcoal are all immune supporting supplements that can really support you when you’re sleep deprived!

What’s Keeping You Up?

Awareness of the cause of sleep deprivation is the first key to unlocking the door to a great night’s sleep. Physical factors such as sounds, temperature, and light are some of the easiest to resolve. You essentially want to be sleeping in a cool, dark, quiet cave. I recommend blackout curtains. You can use a white noise machine to help lull you to sleep if there are neighborhood noises that distract you from sleeping. Also, be sure the temperature is not too warm. It can be appealing to climb into a warm cozy bed, but biologically we need to be sleeping at around 65 degrees.

If your sleep disturbances are psychological or hormonal in nature, such as work stress of an autoimmune condition, I recommend a consultation with a functional medicine doctor who can help you address the underlying issue and help you fix things at the root of the problem.

Tips for Better Sleep

Get outside and move every day. Exercise can increase human growth hormone which has an excellent effect at blunting cortisol and increasing the repair of your body. As discussed, natural sunlight and grounding set your circadian rhythm, which tells your body when it’s time to be awake, and when it’s time to wind down.

Avoid blue light and reduce EMF at night. Blue light (emitted from screens and devices) signals to your body that it is day time, and keeps you up for hours after you last saw a screen. Limit screen time before bed, and if you must be on a device, look into apps that block or reduce the blue light they emit.

To calm down before bed, try a relaxing tea, like chamomile, which can increase neurotransmitters like GABA to help promote relaxation.

Do you have other tips for better sleep? Share down in the comments below!


Nutrition is Science-Backed Medicine

By Dr. Justin Marchegiani

Nutrient: “a substance that provides nourishment

essential for growth and the maintenance of life.”

You Are What You Eat

Why do people change their diet? While popular answers are to lose weight (fat), or to get in better shape (adding muscle), good nutrition is in fact about so much more than changing your physical appearance. Proper nutrition–diet and supplementation–is a science-backed way to improve your health. “You are what you eat,” and everyday you have the power to decide how the foods you consume will serve you. Let food be thy medicine: heal your gut, balance your hormones, improve your mood, boost your energy, and more.

Nutrition as Medicine

As kids, many of us were told to eat our vegetables–why? ”Because they’re good for you.”

As adults, we are told to eat our vegetables–why? “To shed some weight.”

Neither of these answers demonstrates the true healing nature of what we put in our bodies, so, without further ado, here are some of the most powerful science-backed healing properties of a healthy diet!

Click here for a personalized health plan from a functional medicine doctor!

Physical Appearance

We all know that changing our diet can help us lose weight, but did you know that a healthy diet can improve the appearance of your skin and hair too? B-vitamins, like biotin, have been shown to improve the appearance of skin and nails. Collagen also supports healthy hair, skin, and joints!

Increased Energy

A poor diet lacking in healthy macro and micronutrients–paired with a diet high in sugar, alcohol, and processed foods–can lead to headaches, brain fog, and fatigue. On the other hand, eating grass fed meat, healthy fats, and lots of fresh vegetables will give your body the fuel it needs to function optimally.

The Standard American Diet (“SAD” – a fitting acronym) is full of inflammatory processed foods and refined carbs & sugar which deplete the immune system, increase the rate of cancer, and increase the risk of developing autoimmune disease. 

Inflammation is the root cause of most diseases: but a diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods is the best gift you can give yourself to feel and function at your best!

Better Sleep

Poor sleep–whether you’re lacking hours, or your sleep quality is not that good– can increase your risk of diabetes, decrease your immune system, and accelerate aging. 

Alcohol and caffeine both impair sleep quality. Caffeine has a half-life of around 6 hours, so ideally you want to have your last cup by 2pm. Alcohol robs you of restorative REM sleep, which in addition to its dehydrating effects, lead to the next day’s dreaded hangover.

Food that positively affect sleep include veggies, grass-fed beef, chia seeds, sweet potato, wild-caught salmon, and those rich in magnesium. On the other hand, simple carbs and sugar negatively affect blood sugar and sleep–especially if consumed in the evening.

Balanced Hormones

Your body *needs* fat! Fat is required for your body to produce various hormones and keep inflammation low. Carbs, especially simple carbs, can actually increase inflammation and disrupt the delicate balance of your hormones.

If you suffer from leaky gut or other gut issues, you may be deficient in gut bacteria. Probiotics, like those from fermented foods–like sauerkraut, kimchi, and kombucha– provide your gut with beneficial bacteria which can help keep your hormones in balance.

Improved Mood

Did you know that dairy, sugar, and gluten are linked to depression? While the Mediterranean diet, rich in saturated fat, fish, and vegetables is associated with both decreased rates of depression *and* a longer lifespan!

Ready to Take Charge?

By now, you should have all the motivation you need to make a change for the healthier. Here are some resources to help you get started:

  • The JustInHealth Eating Plan
    • How to Eat, What to Eat, and the Healthy Meal Matrix
  • Nutrient Support
    • If you or your diet is deficient in certain nutrients, supplementing with high quality supplements shouldn’t be overlooked!
      • Iron Supreme: Hypothyroidism, anemia, and iron deficiency are all linked. Many women are iron-deficient, which can be remedied by eating red meat and supplementing with a high-quality iron supplement, like Iron Supreme.
      • Magnesium Supreme: Magnesium is essential for proper function of over 300 enzymatic reactions and for the performance of many vital physiological functions. A magnesium deficiency can lead to osteoporosis, blood sugar problems, poor sleep, muscle cramps, and more.
      • Multi-Nutrient Supreme: Your daily all-in-one for general nutrient support! Vitamins A, B, C, D, E and so much more!

Questions? Click here if you are ready for help learning how to take your health back into your own hands!


Jun S Lai, Sarah Hiles, Alessandra Bisquera, Alexis J Hure, Mark McEvoy, John Attia; A systematic review and meta-analysis of dietary patterns and depression in community-dwelling adults, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2014;99(1):181–197


Natural Solutions To A Good Night Sleep

 Solutions to a Goodnight Sleep

By Dr. Justin Marchegiani

Did you know that over 40% of Americans suffer from insomnia on a daily basis? According to the national Center for sleep disorders over 10-15% of people deal with chronic insomnia on a daily basis. Another staggering statistic, the WHO considers shift-work or sleep deprivation the only non-substance carcinogen known to man. Essentially in the same class as cigarettes, asbestos and other known carcinogenic chemicals… That’s real scary!

Sleep is vitally important to help repair the body physiologically as well as psychologically. Physiological repair such as building muscles, bones, tendons, joints and ligaments etc. occurs between the hours of 10 PM and 2 AM. During this timeframe, HGH (human growth hormone) predominates. You can think of HGH is your ant-aging hormone and by maximizing sleep we can make about $2000-$3000 worth per month for free. Between the hours of 2 and 6 AM the body psychologically regenerates, essentially meaning neurotransmitters and other hormones neurochemicals that help with mental health become recycled and repaired.

Cortisol and it’s Circadian Rhythm 

sleep rhythm
The accelerated health risks for poor sleep

 Risks of Poor Sleep
An increased risk of diabetes
Accelerated aging
An increased risk of cancer
Decreased immune function
Obesity and overweight
Poor physical performance
Slow mental acuity

It’s estimated that over $100 billion is lost each year due to the loss productivity that lack of sleep causes and is also the main cause of 100,000 vehicle accidents per year as well as 1500 related deaths from those accidents.

The major underlying causes of sleep deprivation:

17% of all US employees are shift workers that have to stay up working during the night instead of sleeping. If I can urge anyone to make an investment in their health, the first thing would be finding a job that allows flexibility to sleep during normal sleep hours. The research is very clear, the increased risk of chronic degenerative diseases and lack of performance will cost you more in the long run financially and physically.

Chronic stressors can be huge underlying cause of sleep problems this could include (relationship stress, caffeine, chronic illness, infections, blood sugar imbalances, family stress and hormonal imbalances). One thing that all stress has in common whether it’s internal stress or external stress is the increase of cortisol and adrenaline. Knocking your cortisol and adrenaline out of balance puts a great deal of stress on your adrenal glands. Your cortisol rhythm at night is intimately tied in with your melatonin rhythm (melatonin is your night time hormone the keeps you sleep) and the more you push your cortisol and adrenaline out of balance your melatonin will also be negatively impacted and so will your sleep. More research is coming out daily on the anticancer effects of melatonin so optimizing your sleep will help lower your risk of cancer.

Stimulants such as caffeine can affect you from getting to sleep on time. Caffeine has a half-life of  up to eight hours, so consuming your 1 to 2 cups of coffee or tea before 2 PM in the afternoon gives your body enough time to metabolize the caffeine before your bedtime.

Certain medications can also interfere with sleep like antidepressants corticosteroids, allergy medication and blood pressure medication. If you are currently taking a medication and also have a sleep problem please look up the possible side effects of the medication you are taking and see if sleep disturbances are potential side effect.

Click here if you are having sleep difficulties.

Dr. Justin’s top 7 sleep enhancing tip

1. Exercise every single day, especially using the peak eight program. Using peak eight (burst training) program as well as a combination of resistance training can make a significant difference. The right kinds of exercise can increase human growth hormone which has an excellent effect at blunting cortisol and increasing the repair of your body.

2. Picking relaxing teas such as chamomile or sleepy tea before bed. These types of teas contain certain amino acids such as L-theonine, which help to increase certain neurotransmitters like GABA which help promote relaxation.

3. For certain individual’s melatonin can be a great choice.  I recommend using a sub-lingual version, this helps increase absorption as well as increasing activation time. Again, melatonin may not be right for every single person. Some individuals taking melatonin actually makes sleep issues worse. When this occurs there’s usually an underlying hormonal imbalance present.

4. Many of my menopausal female patients have hormonal imbalances that need to be addressed. Low progesterone can be a common cause of sleep deprivation and insomnia. Progesterone has a relaxation effect by opening the GABA chloride channels in the brain and can have similar effect as taking a Xanax with out the side effects. Running a female hormone test can help evaluate this imbalance as well as provide the specific information in regards to dosing and timing of when the natural female hormone support should be administered.

5. Download a free app for your phone entitled “white noise.” White noise can be very helpful at blocking other ambient noise that could potentially wake you up throughout the night. Again if you keeping your phone plugged-in in your bedroom, please make sure it is across the room and if it’s a smart phone also make sure it is in airplane mode. The EMF from the phone can disrupt your sleep and even can prevent you from getting into deeper phases of sleep.

6. Eating a little bit of protein and fat within two hours before bed can help stabilize your blood sugar and prevent cortisol spikes during the night. The suggestion may be against conventional wisdom in regards to eating right before bed but low blood sugar throughout the night will cause your cortisol to go up and increasing cortisol can disrupt your sleep and cause you to wake. A little bit of protein and fat before bed can make a big difference.

7. Give yourself at least one hour before bed to wind down. Turn off the TV, tablets, computers and phones and pick up a non-stimulating book instead. Engaging in meditation and prayer before bed can be very helpful. A simple meditation can include just counting backwards from 10 to 0 with all of your attention focused on your breath and not the problems and stressors of yesterday or tomorrow. Engaging in prayer especially focused on gratitude and all that you have to be thankful for in your life can provide a natural neurotransmitter and hormonal boost that can set you up for a great night sleep.

To receive my full handout entitled “33 secrets to a good night sleep,” click here!

To help get your sleep and energy back on track click here!

The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Dr. Justin Marchegiani unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Justin and his community. Dr. Justin encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified healthcare professional. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Dr. Marchegiani’s products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition, consult your physician before using any products.