Quality Sleep
– An Update of My Cancer Journey –

Dr. Al Danenberg Nutritional Periodontist

January 15, 2023 [printfriendly]

Sleep is Critical for Life.[1]

The lack of sleep or poor-quality sleep can produce damaging effects on a variety of essential day-to-day functions. Memory consolidation, body healing, and metabolic regulation occur during the sleep cycle. The lack of sleep or poor-quality sleep can negatively affect a person’s ability to properly function and can result in many chronic disorders such as diabetes, obesity, depression, bipolar disorder, seasonal affective disorder, and many other chronic diseases.

Over the last several months of my cancer journey, I’ve had increasing sleep problems. I knew I had to improve my sleep to assist my overall healing. And I did not want to do this with drugs or supplements.

There are many causes of poor-quality sleep. One of the causes of poor-quality sleep is the inability to enter a deep sleep state, which involves the creation of delta brainwaves.


Types of Brainwaves

There are four basic categories of brainwaves: Beta, Alpha, Theta, and Delta. And our brain is always generating these wave patterns. But some of them are more prevalent at different times.

  1. Beta brainwaves are the fastest frequencies ranging from 14 to 38 Hertz (cycles per second). Beta frequencies originate in the cortex of the brain and are dominant in the normal thinking state. When we are in this state, we are usually wide awake and alert.
  2. Alpha brainwaves are dominant in the relaxed state of the brain. They range between 9 to 12 Hertz. Alpha waves originate in the thalamus, which is the relay station in the brain that receives sensory input from external and internal stimuli. The thalamus then passes them on to the cortex and other parts of the brain for processing. Alpha is the gateway to meditation and provides a bridge between the conscious and the subconscious mind.
  3. Theta brainwaves represent the subconscious mind. Theta brainwaves are instrumental in the limbic system (amygdala, hypothalamus) in the brain. The limbic system is the key to emotional and memory aspects of our brain function. Ranging from 4 to 8 Hertz, they are present in the dream state of sleep and provide the experience of deep meditation when you meditate. Theta waves also contain the storehouse of creative inspiration and are where you often may have a spiritual connection.
  4. Delta brainwaves are dominant in the unconscious mind and the deep-sleep state. These waves range from 0.5 to 4 Hertz and are generated by the brainstem. They allow the cortical, thinking brain to be downregulated when we need to have rest and recovery. When present in combination with other waves in a waking state, Delta waves seek out information and reach out to understand on the deepest unconscious level things that we can’t understand through the thought process. Delta waves provide intuition, empathetic attunement, and instinctual insight. They also are involved with energy healing.


My Experience with Brainwaves

Way back in 1992, I had the opportunity to attend a 6-day intense program at the Monroe Institute in Faber, VA. It was called “Gateway Voyage”.[2] It was an introduction to reach various levels of brainwave activity which could lead to altered states of consciousness.

In those days, the program was held live at the Institute and was limited to about 15 people. The participants experienced progressive states of altered consciousness through the guidance of recorded audio tapes while experiencing the brain enhancing frequencies called Hemi-Sync®[3].



Robert A. Monroe, the founder of Hemi-Sync®, is internationally known for his work with audio sound patterns that can have dramatic effects on states of consciousness. Monroe observed, during his early research, that certain sounds create a “Frequency Following Response” in the electrical activity of the brain.

Those observations led to some remarkable findings dealing with the very nature of human consciousness. Researchers learned specific sounds could be blended and sequenced to gently lead the brain to various states ranging from deep relaxation or sleep to expanded states of awareness and other “extraordinary” states. This compelling research became the foundation of a noninvasive and easy-to-use audio-guidance technology known as Hemi-Sync®.

Hemi-Sync® (hemispheric synchronization) is a process using headphones. It works through the generation of complex, multilayered audio signals that are slightly different for the left ear and the right ear. Together, these frequencies create a resonance of brain waves in the left and right hemispheres which assists an individual in “balancing” both hemispheres and entering various states of altered consciousness. The process is like transcendental meditation, but much quicker. Hemi-Sync® gets you “there” almost immediately.[4]

Here is a visual representation of a brain with no Hemi-Sync® frequencies. Without Hemi-Sync®, there is an incoherent brainwave pattern with limited thought processes.



Here is a visual representation of a brain with Hemi-Sync® frequencies introduced into the right and left hemispheres using headphones. With Hemi-Sync® frequencies, there is a coherent brainwave pattern with enhanced whole-brain potential.


My Personal Experience at the Monroe Institute

As each of the attendees arrived at the Institute, we were greeted by the staff and allowed to mingle until the formal introduction session. We all knew we were in for an amazing and life-changing week.

We were paired with a roommate and assigned our living quarters for the week’s experience. Each of the attendees had a private cubicle where we would lie down for each audio session, put on the headphones, and listen to the verbal guidance which had Hemi-Sync® frequencies embedded. Our cubicles were also where we slept.

Each day we had 4 separate audio sessions. After each session, the group leader would assemble all 15 participants in the meeting room to discuss our experiences.

Each session was devoted to different experiences in levels of altered states of consciousness. And each session introduced different frequency patterns to set up these different levels.

In the evenings, we had guest speakers who spoke about their unique research in various disciplines of altered states of consciousness. All were beyond my comprehension at the time, but all advanced my curiosity of the vastness and the power of the mind.


How I Use Hemi-Sync®

My recent sleep problems have brought me back to revisit the concepts of Hemi-Sync®. I knew that I had to enhance my Delta Wave frequencies. And Hemi-Sync® possibly could help me do this.

Two Hemi-Sync® audio productions have been created to enhance restful and deep sleep – “Super Sleep” and “Sleep Deeply”.

These Hemi-Sync® sleep products incorporate Delta frequencies, which are predominate in deep sleep. As I mentioned, the Hemi-Sync® process consists of a sound played in the left ear as a single tone and a different sound played in the right ear as a single tone. When played together, the result is a third sound (called a binaural beat) that encourages the desired brainwave activity. This is hemispheric synchronization.

Hemispheric synchronization occurs naturally in daily life, but typically only for random, brief periods of time. Hemi-Sync® can assist individuals in achieving and sustaining this highly productive, coherent, brainwave state for extended periods of time. This is my goal, and I will be using this method nightly.


My Nightly Routine

I purchased Super Sleep and Sleep Deeply. I also purchased a Bluetooth CD player and a Bluetooth Sleep Headphones on Amazon. However, I’ve noticed that when using these recordings with the conventional set of earbuds from the CD player, my sleep is restful and sustainable. So, I have not needed to use the wireless Bluetooth Headphones. Also, I am concerned about using Bluetooth technology on a regular basis.

When I go to bed, I set the CD Player to play the CD repeatedly. I place the earbuds in my ears, get comfortable in my bed, and turn the CD on to play. I fall asleep relatively quickly and only wake to go to the bathroom. I don’t seem to be tossing and turning as I was without the Hemi-Sync® frequencies.

If I wake in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, I may turn off the CD player and go back to restful sleep. If I wake before I am ready to get out of bed, I may turn on the CD player again.

From the first night of using Super Sleep, I noticed surprising results. My sleep was more restful than I can remember in a long time.

I alternate between the Super Sleep CD and the Sleep Deeply CD. The main difference in the two CDs is that the Sleep Deeply CD uses a slower frequency to facilitate a stronger resonance, leading to a more calming and soothing effect. However, both CDs produce significant Delta Wave sleep frequencies.


Continuing with Hemi-Sync®

Using this new sleep protocol allows me to explore many realms of higher states of consciousness. I will continue to keep you updated on my experience through future blogs.

I’m always updating my coaching program, and this is a technology I’m thrilled to introduce with my clients to amplify healing through restorative sleep.

If you haven’t yet booked your one-on-one consult with me, here’s the link to do so. I work with a limited number of clients who are experiencing health complications. Together, we formulate a plan to improve health through restorative sleep, healthy eating habits, stress reduction and efficient exercise. My unconventional methods have helped me recover my quality of life after an incurable cancer diagnosis, and I’m using what I’ve learned to help you do the same.

You can sign up for a free 30-minute consultation here to determine if we are a good fit.


[1] https://www.sleepfoundation.org/stages-of-sleep/deep-sleep

[2] https://www.monroeinstitute.org/products/gateway-voyage

[3] https://www.monroeinstitute.org/blogs/blog/so-hemi-sync%C2%AE-works-but-how

[4] https://www.monroeinstitute.org/pages/early-history-research-article


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  1. I wonder about the interference of blue tooth technology with brain waves.

  2. Thank you for the information on sleep. I’m a light sleeper and can’t seem to sleep at my son’s house when I visit. I purchased the Sleep Deeply CD and CD player from Amazon. I could not get the order to complete at Hemi-Sync. Will let you know how it works. Thanks again.

  3. Do you think a person with high cholesterol which cannot be controlled with meds should try the animal diet?

    • First of all, cholesterol and its derivatives are important constituents of cell membranes and precursors of other steroid compounds. You should consider an animal-based diet. Here is a link to an interview of Shawn Baker, MD and Paul Saladino, MD about the carnivore diet and cholesterol: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3dGhIx1qVM

    • Hi Karen,
      My own journey took me from a normal levels of cholesterol on the Paleo diet to an insanely high cholesterol on a very high fat carnivore diet to a normal cholesterol on Karen Hurd’s bean diet that includes lean proteins, beans and vegetables. Through years of experimentation with diets, I found that the bean diet adapted to be also low in vitamin A (as researched by Grant Genereux) is the best for me to keep my cholesterol at a healthy level (and heal many other health issues).

      • FYI: I don’t agree with this way of eating. It is contrary to our species’ evolution and increases numerous antinutrients and unhealthy seed/vegetable oils into our diet.

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