Improve your Sleep Quality! Rapid Eye Movement- A Sleep Metric Not to Be Overlooked

Rapid Eye Movement (REM) is a crucial stage of sleep that plays a significant role in exercise, body transformation, and holistic health. During REM sleep, the body undergoes essential repairs and maintenance, releases growth hormones, and boosts the immune system, making it a critical factor in achieving optimal physical health.

In addition to its physical benefits, REM sleep also plays a crucial role in emotional regulation and memory consolidation, which are essential for a holistic approach to health and wellbeing. Studies have shown that REM sleep deprivation can lead to emotional instability, anxiety, and depression, and can also impair learning, memory, and cognitive function.

When it comes to body transformation and exercise, REM sleep is essential for muscle growth and recovery. During REM sleep, the body releases growth hormones that help repair and regenerate tissues, making it an essential factor in achieving optimal physical fitness.

To optimize your REM sleep for a holistic approach to health, it’s crucial to prioritize sleep hygiene practices such as maintaining a regular sleep schedule, reducing caffeine intake, and avoiding electronic devices before bed. Getting adequate REM sleep is also essential for weight loss and reducing the risk of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease.

In conclusion, REM sleep is a critical factor in achieving optimal physical health, body transformation, and holistic health. By prioritizing healthy sleep hygiene practices and ensuring adequate REM sleep, you can optimize your health and wellbeing and achieve your fitness goals.

The Health Cake

Welcome to the Healthy Bestari Health Cake! A metaphorically delicious analogy to help you maintain optimal wellness throughout your health journey.


  1. Total time in bed 
    1. From lights out to morning alarm. 
  2. REM vs. Deep vs. Light Sleep
    1. The easiest way to measure your quality of sleep is by using wearables like the Apple Watch.
  3. # of significant waking moments
    1. We all tend to wake up during the night, if you begin counting the amount of times this can happen, you can trace the reason behind it. Maybe you forgo a glass of water before bed! In some instances, such as being a young parent, this is impossible to alter, but there are things you can do to improve your sleep quality, such as proper supplementation. We recommend taking a probiotic and Vitamin D before sleep. You can also alternate with Magnesium and Dormavit – but check with your doctor beforehand. 
  4. % of time with Heart Rate (HR) below Resting Heart Rate (RHR)
    1. Your resting heart rate is the average HR you have when you are resting. It is a good indicator of health as the stronger your heart is, the more blood it pumps per second, hence decreasing the beats per minute. When you are sleeping you are at a state of low metabolic need, meaning a lower need for oxygen. Your body needs less oxygen then even when you are at ‘rest’ (sitting, laying down, not moving) during the day. However, certain things such as when you eat before bed, alcohol, caffeine and other factors that stress out your digestion or adrenals can lead your heart rate to be above your RHR preventing you from achieving proper rest and recovery.


  1. Timing
    1. Make sure to leave enough fasting time between meals to fully digest your previous meal. It prevents your digestive tract from getting stressed out and keeps your colon happy. We also suggest avoiding meals or snacks a few hours before bed as eating before bed can tamper with your sleep quality. 
  2. Micro and Macro Nutrients
    1. Ensuring you are getting enough vitamins and minerals through your diet by eating as organic as possible.
  3. Total Kcal
    1. Using a calorie counter app on your smartphone can help you count your calorie intake. Try not to get too caught up in counting calories though, it mainly comes down to eating enough and not too much and moving your body.
  4. Pre-Pro-Post Biotics for your Microbiome
    1. Prebiotics are defined by the amount of food that your gut bacteria have at their disposal. Usually non-soluble fiber, which is found in vegetables, fruit, whole grains are what these bacterias feed on. The probiotics are defined by the type and diversity of the species of bacteria that are found in the small but mostly large intestine. You can add probiotic foods to your daily diet such as: sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir, raw cheese, nato, umeboshi, etc. Postbiotic is the inter-relation between bacteria that is created by the gases and by-product that one bacteria might produce, which is then used by another bacteria allowing for an even more biodiverse environment. Aim to have a good balance of both pre and probiotics in your daily diet for optimal gut health. 


  1. Frequency, Intensity, Type, Time
    1. Try to switch up your workout routine to have a nice balance between High Intensity Cardio and Strength Training to prevent injury.
  2. Is it stress and fuel matched?
    1. When you are functioning at a high stress level, high intensity exercises can be beneficial for stress release. In order to prevent chronic stress in your body, it is important to wind down after high intensity workouts and to balance your intense workouts with calmer activities such as yoga or strength training. 
    2. Make sure to match your fuel to your workout, carbohydrates help prepare your body for high stress exercise, whereas a protein shake can be beneficial on strengthening days.


  1. Chest vs. Diaphragm
    1. Shallow vs. Deep breathing: Always take time for long deep breaths throughout your day to lower your cortisol and stress response. Try our favourite breathwork practice here. 
  2. Frequency
    1. How often do you remember to breathe? Most of us don’t realize we are shallow breathing throughout the day, which can stress out our adrenal system over time and limit you on your path to health. This book is a great way to reconnect to your breath.
  3. Nasal vs. Mouth
    1. Nasal breathing will allow you to produce more Nitrous Oxide, which is a chemical which allows you to vasodilate (increase blood flow). However, it is much harder to get a high ventilation frequency as the nasal pathway is smaller than if you were to open your mouth to breathe. If your goal is to challenge your cardiovascular system without going past your anaerobic threshold (defined to be the line where you cross from an endurance type of intensity to a higher intensity type of exercise) then choosing nasal breathing during a workout is key. It is also a better way to access your rest and digest state as you increase the blood flow towards your body, letting it recover. We love using a Neti Pot with Pink Salt once in a while to keep your nasal passages clear, especially during allergy season!