Rip Van Winkle Sleep No More
Q Twelve years ago I was having sleep issues. Actually I have always had problems with my sleep. My doctor, a practitioner of Western and Eastern medicine, sold me a bottle of GHB. With its use, I finally got into a fantastic sleep cycle and felt great. The bottle lasted a long time. When I needed more I couldn’t get it. My doctor had stopped selling it.
Now in my late 40’s I am really having trouble with sleep. I have tried many herbal and organic formulas, but none have worked the same. I would love to find it again. Any suggestions? It was a liquid formula, and a very small amount gave me the best sleep ever. I read your recent article and looked at your products. None seems to be the same.
LISA, Denver, CO
A You really must have been sleeping! Gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB) is a powerful, rapidly acting central nervous system depressant that was first synthesized in the 1920s and was under development as an anesthetic agent in the 1960s. While GHB is produced naturally by the body in small amounts, its physiological function is less than clear. However, the FDA banned it in 1990, because of alleged abuse.
Furthermore, GHB became a Schedule I Controlled substance in 2000 (that Schedule includes opiates such as heroin and hallucinogenic substances such as LSD!). Nevertheless, its use as a drug has been approved. It is currently regulated in the US and sold by Jazz Pharmaceuticals under the name Xylem to treat excessive daytime sleepiness in patients with narcolepsy and cataplexy, a medical condition stemming from narcolepsy.
If you haven’t looked into 5-HTP and tryptophan, precursors to the inhibitory neurotransmitter tryptophan, you really ought to investigate! (See
“The Durk & Sandy Way to a Quiet Mind for Sleep or Daytime Calmness” and
“Be More Agreeable, and Possibly Happier, with Tryptophan” in the September and November 2007 issues, respectively.) Many people swear by 5-HTP’s and tryptophan’s efficacy in inducing safe, restorative sleep, as well as their ability to calm them down, and—surprising as this may sound—even make them significantly more complete and fulfilled.