The Great Medicine
Easy-to-understand analogies describing the healing power of sleep offer the basis of research to help insomnia.
Anthony Canelo describes Sleep as a book about rest based on the premise that although sleep is vital, society on the whole is not getting enough of it. Canelo’s objective is not to focus on studying sleep schedules and disorders but rather to provide practical, natural remedies that facilitate sleep.
A striking cover photograph revealing the night sky offers an enticing welcome to the text, which contains a visually appealing, double-spaced narrative combined with quotations about healthy bodies and illustrations of yoga poses. The information provided touches on some generally accepted causes of insomnia, such as diet, lifestyle, habits, and attitudes that cause stress, and offers solutions for “rebuild[ing] your nocturnal life from the ground up.” While some of the sleep solutions offered are commonly known practices, such as wearing a blindfold and earplugs or practicing deep breathing techniques, other lesser-known techniques may not appeal to readers because of their complexity, such as performing an enema or using a chicken-wire igloo to ground you to the earth’s energy.
Canelo attempts to organize this sleep improvement book as a “seven-part play.” He then describes each “part” or “act,” explaining one of the seven fundamental principles that he believes determines a person’s sleep quality. Though the book lists the seven acts of the play, act two, the subject of hygiene, is left out and replaced with a section titled “Sleep” that attempts to find the root cause of insomnia.
The language is easy to understand; for example, Canelo describes dreams as “film reels” of diverse images to heal the body. The explanations at times are oversimplified, and the accuracy debatable. For example, Canelo writes about the diet of “young and restless people,” which he says follows the “standard American insomniacs diet (SAID©).” This, he states, leads to greater food addiction and to additional health issues: “these children will inherit restless nights and seek out alcohol or drugs to quell their blind and chaotic self-destruction.” There is, however, no explanation of the specifics of this diet and no documentation of sources.
Though his specific interest in the subject of sleep isn’t thoroughly explained, Canelo reveals that he began exploring the health sciences around the age of twenty-one. Before this, he suffered years of various medical issues that started when he was in his teens, which led to him drowning his sorrows in television and medication. Canelo, a Certified Natural Health Professional (CNHP), also manages a holistic healing center, the Phoenix Institute of Holistic Health and Research, which is the organization that holds the copyright for SAID.
Sleep is a concise collection of strategies and suggestions to help ready individuals for sleep.