If you’ve ever had to pull an all-nighter, you know that sometimes the hardest part is the day after. Whether you drink coffee, or take other stimulants to stay up through the night, the consequences of a sleepless night are dire.
Because you are overriding your body’s hormonal signal to go to sleep, a number of of other hormones see that as an opportunity to act out. Cortisol is usually released while you sleep to help you get ready for any stressful situations that may come up the following day. When you skip sleep, the body releases extra cortisol, that could make you feel anxious, jittery, and depressed. Ghrelin, the hormone responsible for signaling hunger, also goes into overproduction mode with anything less than 6 hours of sleep. So in additional to feeling cranky, you are also constantly hungry.
To add insult to injury, studies show that some memories are sleep-dependent; this means that you may have a hard time remembering whatever information you stayed up working on, simply because you didn’t sleep on it.
While I do my best to avoid all-nighters, sometimes they just happen. To help me get through the following day, I stack a number of supplements, in an effort to try and minimize the damage.
- 5:00AM Recovery Nap: No matter what is going on, I try to give myself at least 45 minutes for a recovery nap before facing the day. I put on a sleep mask, and set my Power Nap app to Recovery, meaning it will wake me up just before I fall into deep sleep.
- 6:00AM Stack 1 : Once I wake up, I take one pill of Onnit’s New Mood with a cup of coffee. This supplement is designed to boost serotonin, a neurotransmitter connected to happiness and positive outlook. I feel like this helps me stave off the mood swings often associated with sleep deprivation.
- 10:00AM Stack 2 : At around 10 or so, I have another cup of coffee or matcha tea, and two of Onnit’s Alpha Brain or a packet of Alpha Brain Instant, and some eggs.
- 3:00PM Stack 3: I usually reach for another half dose (one pill) of New Mood, especially if the crankiness is starting to set in.
- 8:00PM Stack 4: I try to get to bed as early as possible after an all-nighter. At around eight, I take either Twilune or YAWN, to help me get to sleep quickly.
How do you handle all nighters? Do you have any tips or tricks that help you get through the day after?