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  • Difficulty sleeping

    I'll start off by saying I'm fairly new to Primal, I've been at it for about 3 months. I started off really well, no carb flu and I lost the last 5 pounds that had been eluding me(6'5" 225lbs.). I only did the primal movements for exercise for the first month, then I had some work issues(14 hour days) and didn't workout for about 2 weeks. I started intermittent fasting about 2 weeks ago and have been trying a Leangains approach. I also do a boot camp at the ymca twice a week opposite my lifting days. Lately I cannot fall asleep at night, I toss and turn for 2 hours or more, which has never been like me. Any ideas? Nothing else has changed, no outside stress or anything. It makes me quite cranky in the morning, which makes my wife and kids walk around on eggshells till I leave for work. I've tried earlier bedtime, later bedtime and 2 glasses of wine before bed, no change. Any assistance would be welcome. I'd rather have everyone love Dad again.
    There's a man who walks beside me, he is who I used to be, and I wonder if she sees him and confuses him with me.
    Jason Isbel

  • #2
    I hear where you're coming from. A few months into primal myself I had some sleeping issues. Have you tried melatonin? It's a sleep support supplement you can get at Wal-mart for a few bucks. It worked really well for me. I usually took it an hour or so before bed and it helped kick my sleep cycle into gear.
    Went Primal July 25th, 2011.

    Current Age: 25

    Total Loss: 126 lbs

    Starting Stats: Weighed 266 lbs, Body Fat 37.6% (100 lbs), BMI 40.9

    Current Stats: Weight 140 lbs, Body Fat 15.2% (21.1 lbs), BMI 21.2

    Current Goals: Get a stronger core through Pilates and continue being as Primal as I can be.

    My Weight Loss Notes Now on a blog page. It starts with "My Weight Loss: Introduction." Available to the public, share with friends if you'd like!

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    • #3
      I'm pretty new myself. At about my 6 weeks into going low carb (less than 30 a day average), I started feeling very anxious and my sleep patterns became very irregular (I actually felt like I was a bit crazy/manic). Like you, I couldn't fall asleep or I would wake up at 4:00 am and just lay there thinking about how tired I was and yet felt like I was buzzing on stimulants at the same time. What I've discovered is if I go 3 days or more under 50 carbs, I start to feel like I'm on speed. My brain won't shut off, I get restless, I don't sleep well, I snap at my family, I'm negative and I feel nervous and exhausted.

      I need to add sweet potato, peas, carrots and/or white rice on a regular basis or the cycle begins all over again. I find it very difficult to get enough healthy carbs by eating just veggies. I just can't eat that much in one sitting. I don't care for fruit, so that doesn't leave much to work with. By adding a sweet potato to my day, I can bump my carbs up very easily. There are a few discussions on seratonin/dopomine levels which I found helpful. Adding more fat has made a huge difference as well. From what I've noticed on this forum is that everyone seems to have different reactions to various stages of this program. It's not a one-meal-fits-all program. Perhaps you need more "healthy" carbs?
      Mannydog

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      • #4
        I had this too after a few months. I found if I moved my carbs to the evening I slept much better. Are you doing a lot of physical hard work? Maybe you need to up your carbs a bit around your workouts. Try and avoid the wine if you are having sleep problems - in the long term they make it worse.
        My website: http://www.shoppinganywhere.net/

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        • #5
          Originally posted by jo View Post
          I had this too after a few months. I found if I moved my carbs to the evening I slept much better. Are you doing a lot of physical hard work? Maybe you need to up your carbs a bit around your workouts. Try and avoid the wine if you are having sleep problems - in the long term they make it worse.
          Great suggestion jo
          Mannydog

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          • #6
            Thanks for your replies. I've been keeping the carbs under 100g, so maybe with the more intense workouts I should up it into a more maintenance level. It will be a chore though, now that I've programmed myself to avoid the higher carb veggies. Thanks for the suggestions.
            There's a man who walks beside me, he is who I used to be, and I wonder if she sees him and confuses him with me.
            Jason Isbel

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            • #7
              I'll tell ya man...the same EXACT thing happened to me when I dabbled with IF. Literally, the same symptoms. In fact, I skipped lunch yesterday and felt fasted by dinner time....and wouldn't you know it...insomnia! I'm completely exhausted right now.

              The body must release something during longer than usual fasts that trigger that response. They say that IF triggers Human Growth Hormone. I wonder if that potent release into the system doesn't disturb your natural cycle? Let me know if you figure it out, cause I would like to play with IF more but can't handle that awful feeling.

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