TODAY   |  November 05, 2013

How to keep an even keel as the seasons change

Hoda and Kathie Lee talk to Dr. Carol Ash and sleep specialist Michael Breus about how the changing seasons can disrupt a good night’s sleep – and how cherries can help make it all right again.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> we turned our clocks back one hour over the weekend and just like that evening light was gone.

>> research shows the time change can affect your mood and sleep patterns. so instead of turning into gabby the grurmpster, we have advice from the experts.

>> dr. carol ash, director of sleep medicine at meridian health and michael bruce , clinical psychologist and sleep specialist.

>> hello.

>> really?

>> really?

>> i promise.

>> nice to see you both. welcome.

>> is this hour really affect us in any way?

>> yeah, it really did, hoda. i like everyone else was grateful for the extra one hour, but what we don't realize is it really does disrupt our sleep rhythm and cause us to have difficulty with the quality and duration of our sleep. the days are getting shorter and there's less light and that can cause a problem with your mood.

>> you would think it would make you sleep better and longer because it gets dark so early and cozied up early.

>> it does. but there's something called seasonal effective disorder.

>> i have had it forever.

>> when we have the change in the weather -- in the time, we now have the beginning of seasonal effective disorder. the season of seasonal effective disorder. it's very common to hit about now and see a lot of differences like your appetite may change, a little more fatigue, a lot more sleepiness, things of that nature which can really take its toll.

>> you were telling us during the break the most traffic accidents happen on the day that -- in spring when we spring forward and lose an hour.

>> that's correct. that's correct.

>> yeah.

>> what i don't understand, why don't they take the daylight savings day, insped of it being on sunday, why can't it be on friday? doesn't it make more sense? give us the weekend. i can't figure that one out.

>> geniuses at the helm.

>> how do we get in sync, our sleep in sync.

>> there's a couple simple things you can do. number one thing is you want to stick to the same wakeup time every single day, even on weekends, believe it or not.

>> on weekends?

>> yeah. set your clock. it really will. there's lovely things here --

>> of course there are. what's on the table?

>> drugs.

>> vitamin d .

>> vitamin d is a big factor. we know that because people aren't getting as much sunlight, they're not producing as much vitamin d . we know vitamin d has a lot to do with fatigue and our energy, that feeling of energy, so if somebody wants to supplement with v vitamin d , 1,000 to 2,000.

>> at the same time every day.

>> take it in the morning.

>> creatures of habit.

>> sleep is a creature of habit, right. sleep works on a ser cade yan rhythm and moves in a particular way. the more consistent we are the better for us.

>> what about a glass of wine at the end of the day .

>> it will help you to drift to sleep but will disrupt your sleep patterns after you go to sleep. something that i encourage all patients to do, go red before bed. heart cherries are naturally high in melatonin.

>> afraid i'm going to steal the cherries.

>> they will improve the quality and duration of your sleep. if you drink tart cherry juice one glass for seven days you would see an increase of 40 minutes of sleep and your ability to stay asleep would increase by 6%.

>> we just want to see this. we have a prop behind us.

>> what about 11:00 in the morning?

>> will that affect my nap?

>> i think it will.

>> it might.

>> what about daylight.

>> if you don't have your hands on tart cherry juice another fruit that's good, helpful for sleep are kiwi. if you have kiwi at night that can help as well.

>> all we've been waiting for is that one thing to happen. the shade to go up and sun light to come in.

>> if you get exposed to bright light it will make a difference.

>> keep blue lights out of the way and the technology away from the bed.

>> blue light suppresses melatonin.

>> think of melatonin as the vampire hormone. it only comes out in darkness.

>> we love it when you