Dr Peter Martone – Why Sleep Position Matters

Content by: Dr Peter Martone

Watch the full interview below or listen to the full episode on your iPhone HERE.

Stu: This week, I’m excited to welcome Dr. Peter Martone to the podcast. Dr. Martone has been dedicated to creating the happiest, healthiest, most well-rested tribe of people on the planet for over the past 20 years. He’s the owner of Atlantis Chiropractic Wellness Centres, and the inventor of the Neck Nest, a revolutionary new pillow that is designed to improve your posture while you sleep. In this episode, we talk about why posture matters during sleep and discuss many other strategies to get the best nights rest. Over to Dr. Martone.

Audio Version

Some questions asked during this episode:

  • How do you define good quality sleep?
  • What are the quick wins to help us feel more rested upon waking?
  • What are your thoughts about sleeping position?

Get more of Dr Peter Martone:

If you enjoyed this, then we think you’ll enjoy these interviews:

Dr Damon Ashworth – Deliberately Better Sleep
James Swanwick – Why Blue Light is Harmful to Your Sleep
Dr Michael Breus: The Sleep Doctor, Hacking Jet Lag & The Power Of When


The views expressed on this podcast are the personal views of the host and guest speakers and not the views of Bega Cheese Limited or 180 Nutrition Pty Ltd. In addition, the views expressed should not be taken or relied upon as medical advice. Listeners should speak to their doctor to obtain medical advice.

Disclaimer: The transcript below has not been proofread and some words may be mis-transcribed.

Full Transcript

Stu

(00:00:03)

Hey, this is Stu from 180 Nutrition, and welcome to another episode of the Health Sessions. It’s here that we connect with the world’s best experts in health, wellness, and human performance in an attempt to cut through the confusion around what it actually takes to achieve a long-lasting health. Now, I’m sure that’s something that we all strive to have. I certainly do. Before we get into the show today, you might not know that we make products too. That’s right. We are into whole food nutrition and have a range of superfoods and natural supplements to help support your day. If you are curious, want find out more, just jump over to our website that is 180Nutrition.com.au and take a look. Okay, back to the show.

(00:00:44)

This week, I’m excited to welcome Dr. Peter Martone to the podcast. Dr. Martone has been dedicated to creating the happiest, healthiest, most well-rested tribe of people on the planet for over the past 20 years. He’s the owner of Atlantis Chiropractic Wellness Centres, and the inventor of the Neck Nest, a revolutionary new pillow that is designed to improve your posture while you sleep. In this episode, we talk about why posture matters during sleep and discuss many other strategies to get the best nights rest. Over to Dr. Martone.

(00:01:21)

Hey guys, this is Stu from 180 Nutrition, and I am delighted to welcome Dr. Peter Martone to the podcast. Dr. Martone, how are you?

Dr. Martone

(00:01:30)

I’m doing absolutely fantastic, Stu. Thank you so much. Just got off of a really cool snow mountain biking ride. So I’m energized and we’re ready to deliver. All amped up, real psyched up right now.

Stu

(00:01:44)

Oh, unbelievable. Look, I can’t wait to get into this conversation. Sleep is a big one for so many people and well, first up, for all of our listeners that may not be familiar with you or your work, I’d love it if you could just tell us a little bit about yourself, please.

Dr. Martone

(00:01:58)

Yeah, no, thanks. I appreciate that. So one of my missions has always been to help people maximize their life, right? To be able to help them optimize their performance. And I was just sharing with you, I studied my exercise physiology out there in Australia, down in The Gong. And I was a professional trainer, I’m an exercise physiologist, I’m a chiropractor. So I’ve had all of this education on nutrition and exercise and being able to put it all together and really coming down to the mindset of your health is a product of your daily rituals. And your daily rituals are driven by your beliefs. So if you are not happy with where you are health-wise, whatever it may be, you need to look at how you’re thinking and who you’re trusting as your resources for your health. And really what we stand for is education on being a different voice and a more empowering message and being able to help people navigate through all of the disinformation that’s out there and being able to identify the state of health that they choose. And now we’re doing that through sleep.

Stu

(00:03:20)

Wonderful. Well, you mentioned disinformation. Very, very hard. We’ve never been, I think, in the throes of a society with so many compounding views, experts in every corner, social media shouting at us, tapping on our shoulder, trying to tell us another magic trick, sell us another magic pill. Irrespective of, I think of how you move, what you eat, how you think, if you don’t get good quality sleep, many of those pillars will start to crumble and you’ll come unstuck at the edges. I’m interested in your perception of how perhaps you define good quality sleep because many of us can maybe crash out for seven hours, wake up feeling a little bit groggy. Maybe we’ll hit the sack at 2 A.M. maybe it will be 8 P.M. There’s always been that number of, you’ve got to try and get seven and eight hours of sleep a night irrespective of whether it’s quality sleep or not. So, what are your thoughts on quality sleep? How should we be feeling if we’re well-slept, well-rested?

Dr. Martone

(00:04:24)

I think it’s important to understand, I zigzagged into the sleep industry first off. I didn’t enter the sleep industry to help people sleep, believe it or not. I had herniated my own disc with a mountain biking injury, and I had always had pain in my spine, always from day one, even being a chiropractor for 15 years at the time. So I always had pain, but I attributed it to mount biking and rock climbing on the bluffs off of The Gong. And I was always that competitive athlete and I’m adjusting patients and I always said, “You know what? I have pain, but it’s just because I have hip pain, I have shoulder pain, but it’s just because I’m so hard on my body.”

(00:05:10)

And it wasn’t until I herniated my own disc and then I reviewed 3,000 x-rays and found that holy mackerel, I didn’t have back pain all this time. I had forward head posture coupled because I was on a computer all day long and texting all day long. And because I was sleeping in specific positions that caused this forward head translation. And when you have forward head translation through the righting reflex, it states that body posture adjusts to head position. So I had this chronic psoas major muscle spasm through my abdomen that twisted my spine. And the psoas is the only muscle in the human body that attaches directly to a disc. So I had theorized that, holy mackerel, I didn’t have back pain all these years because I had a bad back. I had back pain because I had forward head posture due to the modern day lifestyle.

(00:06:11)

So I’m like, “Well, when is there an opportunity?” Because I got ADD, I’m not going to sit there and stretch my neck 10 minutes a day or 15 minutes a day or half an hour a day, which is what’s needed to bring that neck back. So I theorized listen, if I can change my sleeping position and be able to stretch it and improve the structure while I sleep, what better way to biohack the body than to do it while you’re sleeping? So, I started changing my sleeping position. And you have to understand why I did it was I may not have never practiced again because my disc was herniated. I’m not going to have surgery just because I didn’t want to have more issues, so I had to get back to it. So I said, “Listen, if I can correct the cervical curve while I sleep, then I’m going to be able to transform my entire life because I’ll be out of pain finally.” It was a theory at the time.

(00:07:05)

So, then I started to change the way I slept and my life transformed. I started having more energy. You could put a glass of water on my chest, I’d wake up and the glass of water would still be there. I stopped tossing and turning. So I started getting really restful sleep and I’m like, “Holy mackerel. There is something to this sleep position thing.” So when you ask that question, what does it mean to wake up well-rested, well to me, getting way better sleep is what we promote. It’s awakening the full potential of a well-rested aligned you. It’s that third component of the alignment that no expert speaks about. They talk about getting good rest, being recharged, but the structural improvement that you can have at night to me plays a crucial role in the three-legged stool to being able to get a great night’s sleep.

Stu

(00:08:06)

Yeah, it’s fascinating. You’re speaking to everybody when you’re talking about forward head syndrome. We refer to it as tech neck. I’ve spoken to a number of people that say we’re essentially devolving. We are becoming, we used to be taller and upright, and now we are stooped and hunched because that’s what we do all day, and I guess we’re the sum of everything that we do. Could it be as simple then as us trying to lay on our backs at night? I’m guessing no. There’d probably be some other things at hand. How might we take this path and try and test this for ourselves?

Dr. Martone

(00:08:42)

So, the way that I came up with all of the concepts that I now teach today is I based everything on law, the way the body adapts, right? A healthy individual adapts to stress in a… Well, everybody adapts to stress, but the healthier an individual, the more able they are to adapt to stress. It’s like if the Titanic sinks, some people died, some people lived, right? Well, why did some people die? Because they weren’t able to adapt to the stress as well as the healthier people. That’s why some people die of COVID and some people don’t because their systems are more functional. So when we look at adaptation, we are going to look at three laws.

(00:09:25)

The first law is Davis’s law, which states tissue remolds based on the stresses applied. Wolf’s law, tissue deposits based on the stress you… So, bone remolds based on the stresses applied. And then the righting reflex, which is body posture adjusts to head position. So when you look at all three of those laws and you put those to together simplistically, your body is like clay, and it can be molded. But the problem with it is everything is controlled by your neurology. So, you have neurological patterns that need to be broken up, even if you stretch the spine into the position. You can have a great curve and then all of a sudden when you’re not thinking about it, you’re going to walk back down into the stooped posture because neurology controls muscle structure. So, it’s a combination of putting yourself in and it’s not, and we’ll go over this, it’s not enough to just sleep on your back.

(00:10:30)

We call it the corrective sleep posture, the corrective sleep position. It’s how you use the pillow, where you put your arms because the average person tosses and turns 20 or 40 times a night because they’re in pain. And then you train the neurology to solidify the new thing, and you do that by working on your balance. So you couple sleeping position with wobble board work, working on your balance. And both of those will allow your body to stand upright if you do it consistently enough. And when I show you this position, you don’t have to stay in this position the entire night. You just need to fall asleep in this position and then let the body do whatever it’s going to do in the middle of the night.

Stu

(00:11:13)

So, tell me about the wobble board. Is that typically the cylindrical board with a ball in the middle? Do you stand in it when you watch TV? How long do you use it for?

Dr. Martone

(00:11:23)

Yeah, so you put it on a hard surface. The body, actually, I’m going to call it the Martone law, but it’s a law that exists, but it’s not really law, but we all know it. It’s called if you don’t use it, you lose it. What that means, simply stated, I’m going to take it another step, is if you support something in the body, you’re going to weaken whatever you support. Anytime you support something. If you put a shoe on and you have an arch support, that is going to weaken the arch of the foot. Anytime you support the body. So when we sit down and we use more supports in our chairs and we’re sitting on a couch and we use sneakers, that’s atrophying a specific portion of our brain. When you atrophy what’s called the vermis in your brain, you’re going to end up walking on your toes. Your body posture is going to lean forward, and then it’s like a shuffling gate.

(00:12:34)

You’ll notice older people, they don’t typically walk like this because they’ll fall backwards. They usually walk in this constricted pattern. So as our body posture, as we’re destroying the structure of our head because we’re sleeping curled up in balls because we want to feel safe, we’re starting to walk like this. So all we need to do is you work on one of those wobble boards and you’re going to fall backwards. You need to improve the balance in the back portion of the plane. This is the frontal plane, that’s the posterior plane. So you need to be able to stand upright, put your head and body in a good posture, and then just work on a wobble board 5 to 10 minutes a day. That’s all you need to do.

Stu

(00:13:22)

Okay, that’s interesting. I have a wobble board. So I put a challenge out there to anybody who has a wobble board thinks that they’re great on the wobble board, I would just say stand on that thing, get comfortable, get in the position, and then shut your eyes, then see how you go.

Dr. Martone

(00:13:38)

And then not every wobble board’s created equal. You have a GoFit wobble board that’s really, really hard. And then you have the Amazon wobble boards that anybody can do. So, the harder the wobble board. And then yeah, you close your eyes, forget about it, you’re going to kill yourself.

Stu

(00:13:54)

So, 5 to 10 minutes a day and that will be sufficient then to start training. Now, I got the wobble board specifically really not even thinking about anything to do with sleep. It was more to work on stabilizer muscles in my feet because I just figured, well, I’m getting older. I want to make sure that I’m stable and I’m balanced, and I have these little minute muscles that help me out and I don’t want to fall over and break things, but fascinated to hear how that plays into sleep. I’ll have to dust it. I’ll get it back from under the bed and dust it off. I’m into it again. Give me a reason.

Dr. Martone

(00:14:28)

Yeah, because when I put you into this position, one of the things that people feel or some of the feedback I get, they wake up and they feel like they’re falling backwards or they’re falling off a cliff. It’s because the position I need you in, your body’s not safe. So the body will toss and turn for three reasons. Number one, because it’s in pain. Number two, your core temperature’s too warm. The breathing issue is another one. And number four is because your body does not feel safe because there’s a… So we’ve always been taught go to sleep, but we’ve never been taught how to sleep.

(00:15:08)

So I grew up in Malden, Massachusetts. It was right on a busy street. There was a bus stop right in front of my house and my bed was against the window that was on the front porch. So I could remember as a kid always thinking that somebody was going to smash through the window and steal me. So I would fall asleep, curled up in a ball with pillows and stuffed animals all around me because that’s how I felt safe, and that is how I learned to sleep. And most of us feel safe. So when I put you into this position, you’re going to feel exposed, you’re not going to feel comfortable because you have this forward head posture, people have bunions, they lean so far forward. So when you’re put into this position, you feel unsafe. So that’s where we talk about using pressure on your chest, pressure over your eyes, different things that you can do to support yourself when you’re starting to fall asleep in this position.

Stu

(00:16:08)

So, tell me then about this sleep posture because I know that you mentioned side sleeping and twisting and turning and shuffling. I do it. I am a side sleeper. Couldn’t ever think about any other way to possibly go to sleep. And I jumped onto your socials the other day and you had a chart and it was a figure, and I think there maybe were nine different postures in there. And I was like this guy with a leg at 90 degrees and the hand, and one was behind a pillow, and that was me to a T. But then seeing the way that you are talking about sleeping is worlds away to how I sleep. So, I’m keen to see more.

Dr. Martone

(00:16:47)

So if we think as two individuals, and what most people don’t realize is that, and this is something that I have no idea how this concept has missed our current health paradigm. The structure of your spine plays a significant role in protecting the central nervous system. And when the structure of your spine is out of alignment, it affects the function of the nervous system. So, alignment is critical to maintain at night. If not, you’re going to compress a specific nerve, and especially in the neck, it’s called the vagus nerve. You’re going to compress the vagus nerve. You’re going to suppress vagal tone, and it’s going to give you a relative sympathetic dominant tone.

(00:17:42)

And everybody understands, oh, I’m in survival. My adrenal glands are shot. I have no energy. Oh, I started meditating, but my adrenal glands, I can’t help them. I need adrenal support. But nobody looks at vagal suppression, which is the opposite of the stimulation. So, you have these two nervous systems that are constantly in balance. You have survive or thrive, and those should be in balance. Most people, because of their sleeping position, destroy the structure of their cervical spine affecting the tone of the vagus nerve, which puts them into a relative sympathetic dominant state. And they have immune system issues, they have digestion issues, and hormonal imbalances. So when we start to look at health, not just from a recharge standpoint, we want to look at it as a structural alignment in the bed type of standpoint.

(00:18:39)

And I’m going to show you this position in two seconds, and when I put you into this position, remember all you need to do is focus on falling asleep in this position. Whatever happens in the middle of the night, just let it happen. Just fall asleep in this position and that’s the lifestyle habit. You may only stay in this position for a half an hour, then it may be an hour, then it may be two hours. But if it is an hour or two a night, you extrapolate that over a week, that’s 14 hours of putting your neck into traction a week. And then over 10 weeks, that’s 140 hours of reversing the damaging effect of being on a cell phone all day long.

(00:19:20)

And it’s important to not support the head when you sleep on your back, most people are going to be like, “Oh, yeah, I’m tried to sleep on my back. I can’t do it. I can’t breathe.” It’s because you’re closing down your airway because a pillow defined as a support for your head. And like we said before, anytime you support something in the body, you weaken it. So, what we want to do in contrast to that is we want to use distraction. So, we want to use the weight of the head off of the back of the Neck Nest is what I’m going to show you on, but the back of a pillow and it’s going to gently stretch the curve back into your neck by putting the pillow under your neck and letting the head hang off the back. I will show you.

Stu

(00:20:04)

Okay.

Dr. Martone

(00:20:08)

All right. Here’s the Neck Nest. I put the Neck Nest on the angle, and then I take the Neck Nest and I take my hands and I put the entire Neck Nest under my neck so the head is off of the back of the Neck Nest. So, the weight of my head is gently stretching that curve into the neck.

Stu

(00:20:36)

And arms and legs by the side as you are? Just like that?

Dr. Martone

(00:20:42)

Like this, like this. You don’t want to be like this. So I typically have my arms and my legs outside of the covers. So, I also use the covers under my chin to hold my jaw closed.

Stu

(00:20:59)

Oh, okay.

Dr. Martone

(00:21:00)

And then I typically sleep with my arms out because your body only cares about really your core. So if you keep your core warm, you’re going to be able to temperature regulate your hands and your feet.

Stu

(00:21:18)

So, how long did it take you to get used to that?

Dr. Martone

(00:21:21)

No, it took me a long time. But remember I said my why was so big because I was dealing with the disc herniation, and after reviewing those 3,000 X-rays and finding the pattern was so consistent based on that forward head posture, anybody that has a hip issue more than likely has a neck problem and they have a sleeping issue. It’s bar none. I’ve dealt with thousands and thousands and thousands of different people in relating their X-rays in order to get long-term results and relief. I never have back pain anymore, ever. And I had it for the first 25, for 30 years of my life, and it is because my neck is in such a good position because I adapted my sleeping position.

Stu

(00:22:04)

That’s fascinating. So that particular pillow that you have now, you mentioned that you refer to that as a Neck Nest. Now I’m guessing that that’s a specialized pillow. Can we do this with our own pillows or is it-

Dr. Martone

(00:22:20)

So, this is something that I ended up patent. That’s my design. It’s my design just based on getting other pillows and soft pillows and doing the same thing. But you can take a soft pillow and instead of putting it flat, you put it on its edge.

Stu

(00:22:40)

Right.

Dr. Martone

(00:22:42)

Right. And then you take it, you stuff it under there. Right?

Stu

(00:22:46)

Okay.

Dr. Martone

(00:22:47)

And then you’ve got that back.

Stu

(00:22:51)

Right. Okay, I’m going to try it. I will try that. What do we typically going to experience if we have been side sleepers for all of our lives, and then we’re going to try this position on the back where literally the head is hanging, but the neck is supported? You mentioned maybe we might stay like that for half an hour. Maybe we’ll wake up back on our sides again. What’s the duration to be able to really push through for perhaps the entire night to get these [inaudible 00:23:27]-

Dr. Martone

(00:23:27)

So I have some people that never thought they would be able to do it. Hundreds of people, thousands of people that said, “I’ll never be able to do it.” Within two nights, they’re sleeping on their back and they’re sleeping through the night and they can’t believe it. Then you have other people that just say, “I can’t do it. There’s no way.” And it’s really a product of, unfortunately, if somebody has ADD or they think a lot, and there are different ways to be able to help other… So remember, in order for you to sleep, you have the survival system. You need to shut that down and you need to turn on the thrive systems, which is the parasympathetic nervous system. So when we look at the parasympathetic nervous system, understanding that we grow, develop, and heal at night because that system’s turned on, how do you turn that on?

(00:24:22)

Well, first thing you can do is you can use pressure over your eyes, right? Pressure against your eyes with just a simple sleep mask creates safety. It’s like an ostrich sticking its head in the ground. That in itself will improve parasympathetic tone. Using pressure on your chest, putting a pillow over your head like I did when I was a kid, you stick pillows all around, create this cocoon or this safe environment, you’ll be able to get to sleep. A lot of times people, if they have too much forward constriction, which most of us do, that being that far back is an issue. So you can sleep with pillows, creating a slightly elevated sleeping position, and then put the Neck Nest or a pillow under your neck. But if you sleep elevated, that will help you from feeling like you’re falling backwards.

(00:25:19)

So at Dr. Sleep Right, that’s our jam. We educate people on how… We want to change the way the world sleeps. We want to help them get W.A.Y. better sleep, and W.A.Y. stands for awakening the full potential of a well-rested aligned you. So it’s not just well-rested, it’s that alignment plays a critical role in our brand because of understanding the structure that I’ve spent 25 years of my life dedicated to.

Stu

(00:25:48)

Yeah, that’s brilliant. So on the converse then, there’d probably be a bucket of things that the majority of us are doing that you would shake your head at and just think, “Well, look, if you want to wreck your sleep, just continue doing what you’re doing.” And that could be things like alcohol, caffeine, smartphone use, exercising high intensity 30 minutes before you want to try and get to sleep. Am I on the right track there on some of those?

Dr. Martone

(00:26:15)

Listen, I’m not going to sleep good tonight because it’s actually hours before you go to sleep. So, I just finished mountain biking. My heart rate, my metabolism will stay elevated. One of the issues with a high heart rate is you’re not going to get good deep sleep. So your heart rate needs to come down as much as you can control it with your breathing. It’s all metabolism. And if you stimulate metabolism, you’re going to crush your sleep patterns. So Tuesday nights, which is my late mountain biking night, I never get a good night’s sleep. I accept it. So, Wednesday I take a nap.

(00:26:53)

You understand that you’re not going to get great sleep every single night because we’re all human. This weekend I went out with my daughter on a snowmobiling adventure and I partook in having some alcoholic beverages when I came back. And I know I’m not going to get a good night’s sleep, but I build naps into my lifestyle. So yeah, it’s alcohol. It’s caffeine after noon because that keeps your heart rate stimulated. It’s eating too late. Anything that will raise your core temperature. We came up with a supplement called Deep Sleep, and it doesn’t knock you out, but what it does is it cools your body core temperature. So when you want your body core temperature to cool, and if it cools quickly, it drops you into deep sleep within that first third of your sleep cycle.

Stu

(00:27:47)

Fantastic. So, tell us a little bit more about that supplement. What are the key ingredients? Because I’m Fascinated and as we mentioned before the show, I’ve tried every supplement under the sun and love experimenting with new stuff.

Dr. Martone

(00:27:59)

And I’m not a big fan. It took me a long time to even decide to even make a supplement. And one of my issues, and the reason why I decided to make it is like tonight, it’s difficult for my core temperature to cool because I have such an elevated metabolism right now because of how much mountain biking I just finished. So, I will take Deep Sleep. So Deep Sleep has a few things, key ingredients most people know. It has magnesium in it, cools the central nervous system. Has GABA, helps serotonin be released, but has also L-arginine. L-arginine dilates your blood vessels. So if you dilate your blood vessels, most of the blood vessels are going to be in your hands and your feet and you stick your hands and your feet outside of the covers, it will just act as a better radiator for your body’s core temperature. So, it helps the core temperature drop.

Stu

(00:29:02)

Okay, fascinating. Would you advocate sauna use before bed? Because that’s definitely a bit of a thermogenic thing going on there.

Dr. Martone

(00:29:11)

So, I typically take a steam shower. I love it because it’s not the steam shower… High temperature stimulates your immune system. That’s the biggest thing temperature does. So a high temperature, if you elevate your core temperature, that’s why your body gives you a fever. Your body gives you a fever, not because it’s the virus, it’s the metabolism speeding up to elevate core temperature. But then that’s why you don’t get good sleep when you’re sick because you’re running at a high metabolism and high heart rate. So now when that core temperature drops, so you get tired or you feel somber when you core temperature drops. So if you elevate it really high and then the body’s going to cool, that’s what makes you tired. So I love that idea of being able to do a hot steam. And then during the day, people get tired right around noontime, one o’clock. That’s because your body falls as sick with cycle and your core temperature’s dropping again. So anytime your core temperature drops, you tend to get tired.

Stu

(00:30:23)

Yeah, fascinating. And you mentioned food and digestion, things like that. What do you think about our diet or eating habits? Do you ascribe to any particular way of eating in terms of the types of foods you eat or the timing of the food that you eat with sleep being the ultimate goal?

Dr. Martone

(00:30:42)

So if sleep’s the ultimate goal, you don’t want to have a lot of food in your digestive tract when you’re going to sleep. And then when you wake up in the morning, your sugar level’s actually really high and you do not want to eat when you sugar level’s high. So, I don’t eat first thing in the morning. So I typically, it’s called intermittent fasting. So I’ll wake up in the morning and I won’t eat till noon. Noon is typically my biggest meal. It’s usually a salad and it’s a big salad, like meats and potatoes. I just put my meal on green. I like to get live food within my system. And then I’ll have dinner, and then dinner will be something small.

(00:31:23)

And I’ll typically eat, which is still a little bit late, but it’s really small. I’ll either have an egg or an egg and something else. We have chickens, so I’d love to have that natural food from the environment. And so I typically eat right around 6:00, and I’m eating a small meal, but 5:30, 6:00 and I’m going to bed at 9:30. So, I’m giving myself a good three or four hours before bed to digest.

Stu

(00:31:56)

So question then on fluids, and you mentioned about three or four hours before food, I heard the other day of a 3, 2, 1 rule. You’re probably familiar with it, and it was for optimal sleep give yourself three hours to digest your food before you go to bed, two hours of no fluids, and one hour off your smartphone. How does that align with your thoughts? Because I know that oftentimes, especially as we age as well, if we’re consuming fluids before we go to bed, we can get up during the night and need to urinate. And that’s going to disrupt everything, especially if it happens multiple times.

Dr. Martone

(00:32:31)

So here’s one of the things that I think is important. So, we don’t want to be stimulated when we go to bed. But a lot of the smartphones, there’s some mindless games that people play that can actually even make you tired. There are a lot of iris programs within the smartphones that decrease the light that are going into your eyes. So, I’m not opposed to having your smartphone on when you’re going to sleep. You just don’t want it a stimulated environment. But if you’re playing one of your games, and that can be relaxing for some people. So my rule of thumb with the smartphone is just don’t be super stimulated when you’re using your smartphone. But I don’t mind the hour, half an hour, that’s good, but I can shut my smartphone up, put it away in that play mode so I don’t get any of the EMS and then go to sleep in seconds. So, I’m not really affected by it.

(00:33:35)

I love the fluid. You really, really want to be conscious on how much fluid you drink right before bed because the worst thing is you could be a great sleeper, but if your bladder is filled up, there’s nothing you’re going to be able to do. And I hate getting up in the middle of the night going to the bathroom. It’s horrible. So, you’ve got to be really conscious about food and hydration.

Stu

(00:34:01)

Any thoughts on those people-

Dr. Martone

(00:34:03)

… and hydration.

Stu

(00:34:03)

Any thoughts on those people perhaps then that A, do have to get up during the night, and B, really struggle to get back to sleep because-

Dr. Martone

(00:34:11)

Oh. Yeah.

Stu

(00:34:12)

I used to be guilty of this in terms of maybe three o’clock in the morning, and I go to the toilet, and then my mind is racing. I just feel like I’ve come out of a boardroom, and I’ve got all of these thoughts ruminating, and I cannot switch it off. And I’ve dialed into something called Box Breathing, which really helped me, but I know that so many people suffer with this, and I’d love to hear what your thoughts are.

Dr. Martone

(00:34:35)

Let me. I’m just going to ask a question. I don’t know what your knowledge is on this topic.

Stu

(00:34:42)

Yeah.

Dr. Martone

(00:34:44)

If you had to guess, when you think, what portion of the brain do you think turns on, the front portion of the brain, or the back portion of your brain?

Stu

(00:34:57)

Front.

Dr. Martone

(00:34:58)

Right? Front portion of your brain, prefrontal cortex?

Stu

(00:35:02)

Yeah.

Dr. Martone

(00:35:02)

If you remember something, what portion of your brain do you think? It’s simplistic, but what portion of your brain do you think the energy moves to?

Stu

(00:35:13)

Rear.

Dr. Martone

(00:35:15)

Rear, right? Where are your sleep centers, in the front portion of your brain, or do you think the rear portion of your brain?

Stu

(00:35:21)

In the rear.

Dr. Martone

(00:35:22)

Right? So if you want to access your sleep centers, you can’t think yourself to sleep. You have to remember yourself to sleep. So you can focus on bringing that energy back. And when you wake up in the middle of the night, it’s a very addictive time to think, because it is right in the middle. So you can think, and access your subconscious thoughts, very addictive time to think. So you can think about everything. You can solve all of your problems, and then you’re going to be like, “I just got to remember that. I just have to remember that. I have to remember that.” And once you fall asleep, you wipe the slate clean, and you’re done.

(00:35:58)

Here’s the deal. You fall asleep on your exhale in the hold, not the inhale. So if you can focus on relaxing your breath, that’s a natural pause. And then you inhale. You fall asleep in that pause, because that’s where your sympathetic tone is maximum. So focus on that breath, or try to get into the dream you are thinking about, because we want to be in control of something. You can be in control of remembering, or thinking. If you think, you’re going to stay up for hours, but if you remember, you’re going to fall back asleep.

Stu

(00:36:42)

That’s fascinating. And that talks to a bit of a strategy that I use. And you’ve just lent a little bit of science then to that, to help me understand what’s happening. So I use Netflix as a tool to switch off my thinking mind. So before I go to bed, I like to watch an hour of Netflix, trash TV. So I don’t-

Dr. Martone

(00:37:01)

That’s like a smartphone. You going to shut that off.

Stu

(00:37:04)

I know. It works.

Dr. Martone

(00:37:06)

You’re right. So it’s mindless TV. That’s okay. Because it’s calming you down.

Stu

(00:37:10)

It’s mindless TV. But if I ever wake up during the night, my strategy is to think about the mindless TV, and remember the mindless TV.

Dr. Martone

(00:37:21)

No. No. No. Remember the mindless TV.

Stu

(00:37:22)

Remember the mindless TV.

Dr. Martone

(00:37:24)

Because it has already happened.

Stu

(00:37:25)

That’s right. And I remember all of the things, and I’ll go through the story as I have watched it on the TV, and it works. And I think I heard somebody whose termed the coin visual overwriting, and it was essentially just trying to just calm this chatter down by junk, whether it be junk audio, junk books, junk TV, just trying to switch off that monkey mind. But I’ll always go back, and remember, remember, remember, remember. And I’ll go through, and I’ll remember the workout that I’ve done that day, and I’ll just go through the motions. What did I do? Which weights did I pick up? And it works. I go straight back to sleep. So fascinating. So thank you for that. You’ve added a little bit of science, and flavor to that. So I understand exactly-

Dr. Martone

(00:38:13)

It took me a long time, because I studied. Once I started getting into sleep, and it was very difficult for me to fall asleep, I tried to look. And it didn’t exist anywhere, and I had to look. And I’m like, “Listen. It just makes sense. Your sleep centers and your memories are so close to each other.” One of the reasons sleep is so beneficial in REM sleep is because it categorizes your memories. “So let me start thinking, and here’s the thing. Let me start remembering.” What I find, and I don’t know what the science is on there. It doesn’t exist, but I’m going to tell you based on anecdotal evidence, you have to have already slept on that memory, right?

Stu

(00:38:58)

Yeah.

Dr. Martone

(00:38:59)

So it has to already be filed in the whole data bank. And then once you fall asleep on a memory, you’ll go. If you keep thinking about the same memory, you’ll fall asleep faster, and faster, and faster.

Stu

(00:39:12)

Oh.

Dr. Martone

(00:39:12)

So I’m going to give you a for instance. I had a Christmas party, and there was 103 people there. How do I know that? Because I count everybody in my mind right before I to get myself to sleep, because I know I have my mountain biking friends, and there were 12 of them. I have 16 of my late friends, then there were. So I count everybody over and over, and I don’t even get to the end of it anymore, because it’s so repetitious, that I put myself to sleep.

Stu

(00:39:41)

That’s brilliant. Wow. Boy, oh boy. You got a lot of friends. That’s all I got to say.

Dr. Martone

(00:39:44)

It was a high school Christmas party. It was big.

Stu

(00:39:50)

That’s awesome. Well, look, we are coming up to time here, and I’m conscious of you as well, because you’ve got stuff to do before you’ve got to get into your sleep routine, no doubt. But question that I like to ask is personal to you in terms of your non-negotiables. What are the things that you do on autopilot each and every day that enable you to crush your day? And it doesn’t have to be sleep-related. It might just be, “I like to get up, and get light in my eyes. And I’ll have a black coffee with, I don’t know, butter in it, or something like that,” anything.

Dr. Martone

(00:40:23)

So sleep is one of my non-negotiables, as you can imagine, sleep, and sleep position, because I know that was probably my way back to health, is really being able to improve my vagal tone through getting the structure correct in my sleep. So that’s one of my non-negotiables. Also going periods of time without eating, I think it’s so important to challenge your sugar levels within your body, and in being able to deplete that liver glycogen. So your body can go into what’s called autophagy. I think that’s so important. I think we eat too much within our current culture. I stay away from, obviously I have some sugar, but I really try to not get my sugar through drinks like Gatorades, and all the juices, and all that.

(00:41:16)

Anytime you see healthy in the grocery store, just stay away from it. And a book that really stuck with me that I think was an influential thing in my mind, and it’s not in current production anymore, but it was called Eating for Beauty by David Wolfe, and he also had a superfoods book, but within that book, they took pictures of food, and there was energy. They used kirlian photography, and took pictures of food. So when they took pictures of the food, they would see a cooked piece of lettuce, versus a regular lettuce. The cooked had just more life energy within it. And then they categorized superfoods like cacao, hemp seed, goji berry, honey, and you had these foods that just irradiated just so much harnessed energy. So I really like to get superfoods within my diet on a daily basis. My big one’s honey, because I have bees.

Stu

(00:42:13)

Fantastic. Yeah. Wow. That’s great advice. Well, we have got a raft of information for our listeners here. So this is fantastic. So what’s next for Dr. Peter Martone? So we’re just at the start of the year. Obviously there’s lots of opportunity ahead of us. Have you got anything lined up?

Dr. Martone

(00:42:31)

Yeah. So my understanding of neurology, being able to look at people, and tell them what’s going on, even before I can look past somebody’s symptoms, read the neurology, and their posture, and tell them what’s going on internal even before they tell me. So we’re coming up what’s called the Neurostructural Protocol and Certification, and I’m going to start teaching that across the world. I want to get. My mission is to be able to change collaborative healthcare as we know it, to be able to improve patient outcomes, because you go to a massage therapist, a chiropractor, an MD, an acupuncturist, yes, they have different modalities on which they treat, but nobody looks at people the same way. They all look at people very different. So I want to be able to bring people together within one common lens of being able to look at people, read neurology, and structural posture, and be able to treat the same, and be on the same language when you intercommunicate with collaborative health care. So that is 2024.

Stu

(00:43:37)

Oh. That’s exciting. Well, when you said that, I looked at myself, and just thought, “Oh. Quick. Stand up straight. He’s looking at me.”

Dr. Martone

(00:43:42)

I can already-

Stu

(00:43:42)

I know. But what’s going on? So for all of our listeners then that want to find out more, they’re interested in Neck Nest, they’re interested in your communications, whether it be social media, blog posts, podcasts, all of the above, where can we send them?

Dr. Martone

(00:43:56)

So I think the best place to go, because you can find out most of, you can go to Neck Nest from there, and stuff, but my educational site is drsleepright.com, D-R-S-L-E-E-P-R-I-G-H-T. Right when you get onto the site, there’s a sleep risk assessment. Right? It determines you can take a quick quiz, and it will rank how well you’re sleeping, and how it’s affecting your health. And then a pop-up will come up, will give you a free download, which will be the Five Pillars of Sleep, just like you have pillars.

Stu

(00:44:30)

Yeah.

Dr. Martone

(00:44:31)

And that we break it out into position, temperature, timing, rest, and relax, and all that type of stuff.

Stu

(00:44:38)

Brilliant. Fantastic. Great resources. Well, we’ll put all the links that you’ve spoken about in the show notes today. Dr. Martone, fantastic conversation. Really, really enjoyed it. And hopefully at some stage, we might be able to get out on the mountain bike and go for a ride with you in the near future.

Dr. Martone

(00:44:53)

Absolutely.

Stu

(00:44:54)

Thank you so much again, and we will be in touch.

Dr. Martone

(00:44:57)

Thank you for having me. Appreciate it.

 

Dr Peter Martone

This podcast features Dr. Peter Martone. He has been dedicated to creating the happiest, healthiest most well-rested tribe of people on the planet for over the past 20 years. He is the owner of Atlantis Chiropractic Wellness Centers and the inventor of the Neck Nest, a revolutionary new pillow that... Read More
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