April 18, 2015

Dictionary for Mattresses and Sleep Products

Dictionary for the commonly used terms in mattress and sleep products industry
In this glossary, you can find the meanings of many terms which are commonly used in the mattress and sleep products industry.

April 17, 2015

How is Lionel Messi Protected from Injuries?

The place of nutrition and sleep in Messi's football career
Messi is one of the most talented football players in the world and also one of the footballers whom football fans love to watch the most.

Health Benefits of Organic Bedding

Advantages of Organic Mattresses and Sleep Products
The term “organic” refers to products made of natural substances with production processes which do not deploy any synthetic chemicals and genetic modifications.

August 22, 2013

Foods That Improve Sleep

Popcorn as Sleep Aid
If you have difficulty in sleeping, you may get help from certain foods and drinks to sleep better. Here are six of them:

May 9, 2013

What is Organic Cotton?

Türkçe Versiyon

Organic Cotton

organic cotton
Organic cotton is natural cotton grown from nongenetically modified plants without the use of any synthetic agricultural chemicals such as fertilizers or pesticides. Organic cotton is grown in subtropical countries such as Turkey, China, and USA.

The cultivation of organic cotton promotes and enhances biodiversity and biological cycles. Organic cotton is certified by certain institutes which supervise the complete agricultural cotton growth process.

High levels of agrochemicals are used in the agriculture of conventional cotton. Cotton production uses more chemicals than any other crop. 10-16% of the world's total pesticides (including herbicides, insecticides, and defoliants) are used for production of cotton.

Disadvantages of Conventional Cotton

  • Chemicals used in the processing of cotton pollute the environment, air and water.
  • Residue of chemicals in the final product (eg. shirt, underwear, mattress or bedding) may irritate human skin.
  • Pesticides cause hazard to biodiversity and ecosystems, as well as human health.

Advantages of Organic Cotton

advantages of organic cotton
  • Organic cotton is more healthy and clean. It protects the earth and also human health.
  • It prevents contamination of water and protects the quality of water on earth.
  • Protects biodiversity and ecosystems.
  • Protects soil and prevents soil erosion.
  • Eliminates the toxic chemicals inside cotton, offers a natural product which is safe for humans.

Advantages of Using Organic Cotton for Mattresses and Bedding Products

  • Since humans spend around 1/3 of their lives sleeping, they are in contact for very long periods with their mattress and bedding products such as bed sheets, comforters, pillows and blankets. Organic cotton provides a natural and chemical free sleep environment.
  • Reduces risk of allergy and protects the skin.
  • Reduces the risk of inhaling chemicals during sleep and protects the lungs.

Image Resource for Bedding: Coyuchi Bedding, http://www.coyuchi.com/organic-bedding-collections/organic-bedding-collection-windy-point.html
"Organic Cotton is Different", AbourOrganicCotton.org, http://www.aboutorganiccotton.org/OCdiff.html

April 24, 2013

Mobile Phones and Sleep

mobile phones and sleep
In  year 2008, a study which was funded by major mobile phone makers themselves showed that people exposed to mobile radiation took longer to fall asleep and spent less time in deep sleep.

The study indicated that “during laboratory exposure to 884 MHz wireless signals components of sleep believed to be important for recovery from daily wear and tear are adversely affected". 

The itch to check in at all hours of the night or wake up to the sound of a text message disrupts our sleep, too. 

A Swedish research showed that there is a link between heavy cell phone use versus sleeping problems, stress and depression.

cell phone in bedroom
Especially young people feel like they must be available by phone around the clock. Unreturned messages could cause a feeling of guilt because the communication technology is in our hands and always reachable. Some teens even return text messages while they are asleep.

Most people do not set limits on their nighttime availability. Nearly 75% of people from the age of 18 to 44 sleep with their phones within reach, according to a 2012 Time/Qualcomm poll. That number falls off slightly in middle age. Leaving the phone in another room is a behaviour as common as as keeping the mobile phone in the bedroom only among people who are 65 and older.

"How Mobile Phones Affect Sleep", Huffington Post, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/15/phones-sleep-mobile-_n_2680805.html

February 26, 2013

Warm Milk and Sleep

Türkçe Versiyon

Does Warm Milk Aid Falling Asleep?
Does warm milk aid sleep?

Milk contains two different sleep promoters: melatonin hormone and the amino acid tryptophan. However, the amount of both of these substances in one glass is minute, making it unlikely that a glass of milk would help you fall asleep faster. Despite this, there is evidence that warm milk may provide some psychological benefits to winding down. We connect the drink to memories of our mother, home and the comfort of childhood that can help us relax and decompress. Since it soothes and calms your mind, milk may aid in falling asleep. Drink up!

Dr. Mehmet Öz, Dr. Oz, http://www.doctoroz.com

February 18, 2013

The Oldest Mattress in the World

Türkçe Versiyon

The Oldest Mattress in the World Was Made 77.000 Years Ago

Archaeologists Had Found The World's Oldest Known Mattress In South Africa

world's oldest mattress
The mattress consists of layers of reeds and rushes. It was discovered at the bottom of a pile of bedding made from compacted grasses and leafy plants. The bed was found at the Sibudu Cave Site in KwaZulu-Natal and the oldest mats belonging to the bed date to 77.000 years ago.

"What we have is evidence of plant bedding that is 50.000 years older than any previous site anywhere in the world," said Lyn Wadley of the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.

The compacted layers of fossil plants show that the bedding was periodically burned, possibly to limit pests and garbage.

Insect-Repelling "Top Sheet"

What's more interesting, researchers believe the ancient people added a "top sheet" to the bedding made of insect-repelling greenery, possibly to ward off biting bugs such as mosquitoes and flies.

The leaves are from the tree Cryptocarya Woodii, or river wild-quince, a medicinal plant that produces insect-killing chemicals.

“While there's no evidence that the cave dwellers suffered from bed bugs, they likely used the leaves to counteract body lice. At an estimated 30 centimeters high, the mattress would've been a "very comfortable" and "quite long-lasting form of bedding” Lyn Wadley said.

"Oldest Known Mattress Found; Slept Whole Family", National Geographic, http://bit.ly/sTZMRU

January 29, 2013

Better Sleep for Beauty

Türkçe Versiyon

The growth hormone is secreted more during sleep, and this makes the skin remain more lively, fresh, shiny and young

One of the golden keys of your health is "a good night sleep". Better sleep is one of the main factors which determine the quality of our life.

There are hundreds of research studies indicating that sleep deprived people are more prone to heart attack, paralysis, heart rythm disorders (arrhythmia), hypertension, weight gain and even obesity, depression and many other diseases.

beauty sleep
When we can not sleep well at night we become tired, exhausted, nervous, and tense; showing nervous bursts at unexpected times, having difficulty in focusing on our work, and having difficulty in learning. Our work success is significantly reduced, and what is more important, we become more prone to making accidents.

Sleep is not just a "break", it is a curing process in which the body heals itself, repairs problems which occur during awake periods, cures sores and wounds.

When we look at the research studies made in this field, we will see in near future that sleep deprivation is correlated to many more health problems. According to experts, if you can not sleep well, your risk of obesity and diabetes is increased. Risk of sudden death seems to be higher for people who have sleep problems. People with sleep deprivation have a higher possibility of facing memory problems and even dementia during their old ages.

Growth Hormone Increases During Sleep

sleep and beauty
Sleep has another very important benefit: Better sleep makes people more beautiful. The growth hormone is secreted more during sleep, and this makes the skin remain more lively, fresh, shiny and young. The amount of growth hormone in blood increases with regular sleep, increasing production of collagen and elastic fibers (fibrils) which are fundamental building blocks of human skin and thus it adds humidity to the skin.

Furthermore, growth hormone (somatropin or somatotropin) is beneficial for hair and nails too.

A good sleep is a pill of youth and the expression "beauty sleep" is very well deserved.

Some Natural Sleep Aids
  • Passiflora
  • Valerian
  • Melissa
  • SAMe (S-adenosyl-methionine)
  • Camomile tea

Note: You can talk to your doctor and/or dietician before deciding to use a herbal supplement and for choosing among the alternatives.

Prof. Dr. Osman Müftüoğlu, http://www.hurriyet.com.tr

January 13, 2013

UK Mattress Sizes

Türkçe Versiyon

Common Mattress Sizes in United Kingdom

Small single
Inches: 2’6 x 6′, Centimeters: About 75 cm x 180 cm
Standard single
Inches: 3′ x 6’3″, Centimeters: About 90 cm x  190 cm
Inches: 4′ x 6’3″, Centimeters: About 120 cm x 190 cm
Standard double
Inches: 4’6″ x 6’3″, Centimeters: About 135 cm x  190 cm
Inches: 5′ x 6’6″, Centimeters: About 150 cm x 200 cm
Super King
Inches: 6′ x 6’6″, Centimeters: About 180 cm x 200 cm

Note: "Prince" is also known as "Small Double" or "Three Quarter". "King" is also sold as "Queen" in United Kingdom (UK).

Mattress sizes
"Bed Sizes are Confusing!", The Hospitality Hotspot,http://thehotelmattressblog.wordpress.com/2011/01/05/bed-sizes-are-confusing/

Wash Your Pillows At Least 3 Times A Year

Türkçe Versiyon

Did You Know?

Your pillow doubles in weight over a span of time from absorbing dust, mold, bacteria, allergens, and dead skin when we sleep on them!

Since our head, face and neck are in contact with our pillow for long hours every night, the cleanliness of our pillow is vital for our health. 

Best Pillow Practices

  • Wash your pillows at least 3 times a year
  • Replace your pillows once every 2 years

Watch the Video

"Clean Your Pillows!", Clean My Space, http://cleanmyspace.com/clean-your-pillows/

5 Evening Habits That Are Affecting Your Sleep

Türkçe Versiyon

What You Do in the Evening May Effect Your Sleep

Sleep and evening activitiesAre you wondering why you just can't get a good night's sleep? What you're doing before bed may be the culprit.

TV Time

You've saved up a DVR's-worth of your favorite TV show, and it's finally time to settle in with an episode or two. Fast-forward three hours later, and you realize it's well past your bedtime. Watching too much TV or staring at your computer all night can mess with your body clock, so make sure you set a limit to the amount of screen time you're getting at night, and turn off those electronics at least 20 minutes before bedtime.

Late-Night Exercising

Hitting the gym after work doesn't disrupt your sleep schedule — in fact, daily exercise actually helps you sleep better. But exercising only a couple hours before you go to sleep can energize your body so much that it's hard to wind down. Try to finish up any rigorous exercise at least two hours before bedtime.

Work Worry

Have an important deadline coming up? Don't spend your nights stressing about it. If you find it hard to stop thinking of everything that's on your to-do list for tomorrow, start a relaxing pre-bedtime routine that includes meditation, slow stretching that helps you sleep, or other calming habits that wind you down and take your mind off things.

Heavy eating before bed
Heavy Snacking at Late Night

You ate an early dinner, and now can't even think about sleeping until you've sated your grumbling stomach. Just make sure you don't go overboard, since going to sleep on a full stomach can disrupt your sleep cycles. Check out the foods to avoid at night here.


While alcohol can help you go to sleep faster, it will also affect the quality of your sleep. If you want to wake up feeling well rested the next day, skip the glass of wine and go for herbal tea as your nightcap.

"5 Evening Habits That Are Affecting Your Sleep", Leta Shy, http://www.fitsugar.com/Bad-Habits-Affect-Sleep-23963409
"How to Lose 10 Pounds Safely", Ysolt Usigan, http://www.shape.com/weight-loss/weight-loss-strategies/how-lose-10-pounds-safely/slide/5

Sleep Deprivation Hinders Formation of New Brain Cells

Türkçe Versiyon

Sleep Deprivation And The Brain

Uykusuzluğun beyine etkisi
According to a research, sleep deprivation prevents formation of new brain cells

Dr. Elizabeth Gould from Princeton University conducted this research on mice, and discovered that sleep deprivation affects the hippocampus region of the brain which is responsible for the formation of memories. This effect is indicated to be caused by a stress hormone. 

Sleep deprivation slows down the formation of new nerve cells in the hippocampus region responsible from memory.

Uyku ve beyin

The research method relies on comparison of mice which were sleep deprived for 72 hours with mice which were not subject to such an effect. The levels of stress hormone called corticosterone (CORT) in sleep deprived mice rises relative to the levels in normal mice. Furthermore, building of new brain cells in their hippocampus region slows down. Researchers investigated the connection between the stress hormone and production of new brain cells, and they have observed that new cell formation in the brain continues when the level of corticosterone is held constant. The research concludes that stress hormone increases to high levels due to sleep deprivation and hinders production of new brain cells which are necessary for formation of memory. Although the sleep deprived mice can turn back to their normal sleep cycles within one week, the production of new nerve cells turns back to its normal level only after two weeks.

Today, even though the reason for renewal of nerve cells observed in the adult brain is not known, Dr. Gould and her team claim that problems which occur in cognitive functions after long term sleep deprivation can be caused by the slow-down of this renewal process. Concentration disorders are given as examples for these type of effects. 

Dr. Neil Stanley, who is an expert in the field, comments on the result of the research, stating that it is necessary to do further research in order to decide if these conclusions put forward by the research are valid for humans as well. He indicates that nobody would stay sleepless for 72 hours under normal circumstances. He adds that the conclusions of the research would be interesting if the same effects were found in subjects who were made to sleep a little bit less than they should every night.

Source: Tübitak Science and Technology Magazine

Improving Memory by Sleep

Türkçe Versiyon

Better Sleep Improves Memory

Sleep and memory
Especially during summer time, napping after lunch under sunlight reflected to your face could be a pleasure. Related news can be a cause of smile for people who like naps during the day. Prof. Avi Karni and Dr. Maria Kormanfrom Haifa University have revealed that 90 minutes "naps" strengthen long term memory. Researchers verbally state that how the functions which contribute to memory formation run during sleep is not perfectly known yet, but in future when these mechanisms are well understood, the memory can be strengthened artificially by the employment of similar mechanisms. 
Information which is kept in our memory for long years are stored in our long term memory. This region of our memory is divided into two parts: the "what memory", which stores what we did yesterday, and what we remember from a book we read a few hours ago; the "how memory", which stores information about a foreign language we know, about how to drive a car, how to play basketball etc.

Sleep and the brain
Within the research, the participants were divided into two groups. All the participants were thaught a series of motions to be realized using their fingers. When implementing these series of motions, the researchers evaluated the "how memory" of the participants. The evaluation was made taking into account how fast and how correctly each participant completed the series. 

The experiment group was made to sleep one and a half hour after learning the series, and the control group was deprived of this nap
Through the evening, the participants were asked to repeat these series of motions with their fingers. The group who had a nap during the day made a very successful performance relative to their performance before this nap. The second group who did not sleep did not show any change in their performance.
Researchers have revealed how even a  90 minutes of nap protects the "how memory" against forgetfulness. 90 minutes of sleep is very short relative a night's sleep which usually lasts for 6-8 hours, but still it was effective in strengthening the memory. Prof. Karni's future goals are very interesting. The professor claims that if the mechanisms of long term sleep which contribute to memory development are revealed, then memory of adults can be  empowered by the use of imitating similar mechanisms artificially. But, science needs time for understanding these mechanisms completely and for being able to imitate them artificially. Until then, if you wish to keep a certain matter in your memory after learning it, you can take the advise to fall asleep for a 90 minutes nap.

Hint: Why 90 Minutes?

Sleep stages
Sleep comprises of 5 different stages which follow each other. These 5 stages are completed within and start over again every 90 minute period. 4 of these stages are non-REM stages while the last of them is the REM stage which is usually the stage in which we have dreams. 

When this sleep cycle is left uncompleted, we feel restless and sleepless. Therefore, if we are waking up with the aid of an alarm clock, and if our last stage of the sleep cycle if left uncompleted, we may feel tired and sleepless even if we sleep for long hours in total. 

Scientists suggest that we arrange our sleep duration in multipliers of 90 minutes.

ScienceDaily, January 2008

January 12, 2013

10 Sneaky Spots Germs Are Hiding: Yoga Mats

Türkçe Versiyon

Bacteria and Microorganisms Living in Yoga Mats

Sure, nearly all gyms have antibacterial spray handy, but have you ever seen it used to clean the yoga mats that come in contact with sweat and bare feet all day

While scientists haven’t officially studied the mats, there have been several reports of antibiotic-resistant bacteria thriving on them

Play it safe by bringing your own mat, such as antimicrobial and antibacterial mat.


January 11, 2013

10 Sneaky Spots Germs Are Hiding: Pillows

Microbes and Bacteria Inside Pillows

Chances are, you wash your sheets and pillowcases frequently, but when was the last time you threw your actual pillow in the laundry machine? Pillows contain mold, bacteria and dust mites, which can cause allergies

Several studies have demonstrated that pillows are one of the biggest sources of infection in hospitals. At least there is an easy solution: You can wash your pillows often.

It is not possible to wash pillows with memory foam or latex foam filling. You can only wash the interior cover and the exterior cover (from  your bedding set) of these pillows. But, you can wash your pillows with natural fiber filling such as cotton or wool, or washable synthetic fibers. 


Comparison of Latex and Memory Foam for Mattresses

Türkçe Versiyon

Latex Mattress, or Memory Foam Mattress?

Natural rubber, rubber tree
Latex is natural rubber obtained from trees, turned into foam form and used as filling material for mattresses. 

Memory foam (viscoelastic foam, visco foam) is a material which is manufactured completely out of synthetic materials.  

Latex is superior to memory foam (viscoelastic foam) in many ways. It provides a healthier and higher quality sleep. It is a natural material and this is a big advantage of latex when compared to memory foam.

The only big disadvantage of latex is that its cost is higher than memory foam.

Latex foam is superior to memory foam with its following features;

  • Latex provides a more comfortable sleep.
  • Latex is contains natural ingredients, memory foam is completely chemical.
  • Latex is healthier than memory foam.
  • Latex has a longer lifespan than memory foam.
  • Latex does not heat and cause perspiration like memory foam.
  • Latex is more durable than memory foam.
  • Latex provides more ease of movement in bed than memory foam.

Latex mattress vs. memory foam mattress