Don't you wish there was a magic pill you could take when you go to bed that would make you wake up on time, feeling refreshed, without an alarm clock? Well according to medical science, there is no such thing. Sorry. But according to 37 year-old mom of three Cathy Beggan from New Jersey, her special time-release blend of herbs and vitamins can do just that. And a Daily News reporter says they really work, science be damned!
I decided to try the pills for myself. Just before hitting the sack, I took two of the rather horsy pills. Sure enough, about seven hours later, my eyes popped open. With an unusual and almost alarming degree of lucidity, I walked into the kitchen and started my morning coffee ritual, then realized that I didn't need it...
I tried the pill a second time, with even more dramatic results. Deliriously exhausted, I went to bed at midnight, and made the classic mistake of setting the alarm for 7 p.m. instead of 7 a.m. About four hours later, I was awoken by a loud swarm of fighting stray cats in my backyard. They kept me up for about an hour before I could fall back asleep. Despite the interruption, and the fact that my alarm never went off, I still woke up at 7:30, and got out of bed after just a few minutes. This was huge.
So, it has what you might term "testimonial evidence" on its side. But what do the scientists say?
"I don't know of anything that indicates that these ingredients are helpful in improving daytime function when taken at night," warns Dr. Gary Zammit, director of the Sleep Disorder Institute in Manhattan and clinical associate professor at Columbia University.
"To my knowledge," says Zammit, "the best way that we can feel fully refreshed is to ensure that we've had an adequate sleep period. There's no herb or vitamin that can replace that."