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  • Waking up at night for no apparent reason

    I'm on the paleo/primal blueprint for a month, and the last few days I've been waking up (eyes closed) at 4am. Normally I can easily get to sleep in seconds, but these times it has been very hard to sleep again. I'm not getting as much hours of rest as I did (usually 8 or a bit more).

    Before you say it, I don't want naps, I rather get that tiredness during the day and use it at night =)

    Another thing I noticed, is that a couple of these times I noticed my blood pressure high (my neck veins were beating kind of fast), which is weird, since I'm on a rest state.

  • #2
    Go to sleep later? Your body is supercharged it needs no more sleep.

    PALEO!
    I used to seriously post here, now I prefer to troll.

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    • #3
      How low carb are you?

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      • #4
        @iniQuity
        I want to sleep as early as possible, I've read it helps with insulin if you go to bed early and get up early.

        @NDF
        Probably 50 to 100 grams max per day.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by JPA View Post
          @iniQuity
          I want to sleep as early as possible, I've read it helps with insulin if you go to bed early and get up early.
          Interesting, do you have any references for this claim. I've never heard of such a thing.

          Anyway, as far as your sleeping paterns go, I would not stress over it. Simply sleep/nap when you are tired and don't when you are not.

          It is currently 5:20am now, and I've already woken up, showered, made up my bed, did some stretching exercises, logged into MDA, and posted a few threads. If I happen to get tired this afternoon, I will take a nap. The last thing I'm going to do is worry about what time I wake up or go to bed or how tired or alert I am.

          Do you have an alarm clock? If so, throw it out the window, it's useless.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by JPA View Post
            @iniQuity
            I want to sleep as early as possible, I've read it helps with insulin if you go to bed early and get up early.

            @NDF
            Probably 50 to 100 grams max per day.
            How long have you been eating low carb?
            Any chance you know what your bodyfat percentage is?

            The "happy hormones" that help with good sleep can be down regulated when one eats low carb for too long and/or diets for too long.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Grok View Post
              Do you have an alarm clock? If so, throw it out the window, it's useless.
              When someone isn't well rested and doesn't have a regular sleep pattern, an alarm clock is necessary to prevent people from sleeping in, being late for work, etc.

              Once you get into regular sleeping patterns, I agree, an alarm clock isn't necessary. I have been waking up before my alarm goes off for a long time now, but I still set it "just in case".

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Grok View Post
                Interesting, do you have any references for this claim. I've never heard of such a thing.
                The book "Lights Out: Sleep, Sugar, and Survival" goes into detail on the hormonal effect of sleep, sleep environment, and sleep timing. Interesting read -- but be warned, the author is a bit of a whackadoodle. She has a very odd style. I'd have had trouble taking her seriously were it not for repeated recommendations from trusted sources (including Robb Wolf) and the fact that nearly 1/3 of the book comprises the list of references.
                Nightlife ~ Chronicles of Less Urban Living, Fresh from In the Night Farm ~ Idaho's Primal Farm! http://inthenightlife.wordpress.com/

                Latest post: Stop Being Stupid

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                • #9
                  I also wake up ~4am pretty much every night for about a year now. Carb levels don't seem to have any affect. I eat pretty high carb on workout days and low carb on rest days and I wake up regardless.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by NDF View Post
                    When someone isn't well rested and doesn't have a regular sleep pattern, an alarm clock is necessary to prevent people from sleeping in, being late for work, etc.
                    I know, I am all too familiar with that vicious cycle. However, ditching the alarm clock fixed my sleeping issues long before I ever heard about the Primal Blueprint and I cannot recommend it enough. Perhaps this holiday season will provide an opportunity for the OP to give it a try.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Grok View Post
                      It is currently 5:20am now, and I've already woken up, showered, made up my bed, did some stretching exercises, logged into MDA, and posted a few threads. If I happen to get tired this afternoon, I will take a nap. The last thing I'm going to do is worry about what time I wake up or go to bed or how tired or alert I am.
                      That's nice, if you can do it...Not all of us get to nap in the afternoon, even if we're dead tired.

                      To the original poster, I went through a phase after a couple of weeks (weeks 3-5, I think)wherein I found it really hard to get to sleep (extremely frustrating). That settled down, eventually, but it's a huge pain in the rear while it's happening. My condolances.
                      Basically, I think it's just a way of your body trying to settle into a new hormonal swing, and it still working out the kinks.

                      Good luck!

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                      • #12
                        I go through phases like this as well. I swear there are times where for a week in a row I will get up nearly every night at the same time. It's eerie when every day for a week you look at your clock and it is 3:34 am but it's happened.

                        I do have a toddler in the house (just turned 1 but sleeps in other room) although my wife gets up to calm and feed her if needed. I also have to get up at 6 am for my job so an alarm clock is necessary and sometimes my sleep gets disrupted--that's life.

                        I have no explanation, just a few things I have pondered about the cause of this. First, alcohol seems to be a factor, drinking at night but waiting until the buzz has worn off helps, going to sleep a little tipsy hurts. Second, magnesium supplements (say 400 to 500 units forget if mg or g but around 100% of USRDA) seem to help. Third, if you are a light sleeper, try ear plugs. Finally, if you are low, low carb, try to get your carbs at night. I've found that a sweet potato at dinner can help.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by melodious View Post
                          That's nice, if you can do it...Not all of us get to nap in the afternoon, even if we're dead tired.

                          To the original poster, I went through a phase after a couple of weeks (weeks 3-5, I think)wherein I found it really hard to get to sleep (extremely frustrating). That settled down, eventually, but it's a huge pain in the rear while it's happening. My condolances.
                          Basically, I think it's just a way of your body trying to settle into a new hormonal swing, and it still working out the kinks.

                          Good luck!
                          That's what seems to be happening with me... and I want to add... that it may or may not be cold related. Ok, I live in Portugal, but we also have cold weather here, and I hate the cold.

                          It may not be related to it, but I thought about it. I have no heating, I live by a river and it's cold and wet.

                          Also, I don't use any alarm clocks, I usually wake up (use to) at 7am and it's fine. Now I'm waking up at 4am and trying to sleep and dozing off and on until it's 6 or so and I get up.

                          I have the feeling that by going low carb maybe our body doesn't need as much rest as people on a high carb diet... but I could be wrong. My first 3 and a half weeks on low carb went fine, and I mean super fine... now I'm getting these crazy nights, why now, why after 1 month?

                          By the way, concerning the insulin thing, I was part of a forum where a female scientist used to post. Her posts were really hard to follow, fortunately she summed up things, and she recommended no naps and instead go to bed early and get up early. There are insulin advantages and other overall advantages for us by doing so.

                          Don't pick me on this, I'm not a doctor and I can't tell if she was either, I don't care about a piece of paper anyway, I just care about results, and it makes sense from an evolutionary stand point as our ancestors went to sleep early and got up early. They would also nap, but I would guess they would probably nap when it was hot, not cold.

                          Food for thought.

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                          • #14
                            Are you a Benfica fan? that could be the problem.

                            how many hours are you averaging? are you dragging ass during the day? I get 7 hours usually, sometimes 8 or 9, but the MORE I sleep the more tired I feel during the day. 7-8 hours is golden, 9-10 and I'm a zombie, same as if I were to get 4-6 hours. It's weird.
                            I used to seriously post here, now I prefer to troll.

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                            • #15
                              Not everyone has an endogenous sleep cycle based on a 24 hour period. I am one who does not.

                              My sleep comes in cycles. I will go to sleep around 2200 awake and start my day around 0330 or 0400 about one third of the time. Give that a week or so. Then I will start falling asleep around 2400 or 0100 and awake around 0730 or 0800. After that comes sleep starting at 0300 or so and lasting until close to noon. I need to force myself out of bed on those days. I would probably cycle throughout the day if I didn't try to sleep during the night instead of the day.

                              I used to study sleep and such because of my difficulties in a 9 to 5 world and I remember reading that some are on a 28 hour schedule instead of a 24 hour one. That is probably my condition. It causes no problems now that I am retired and not clock bound by some job.

                              The sleep early/arise early yields the most rest. The other cycles leave me a bit tired and sluggish. If I can sleep during daylight hours but in a totally dark place, I can have proper rest just as during the night sleep. I don't use an alarm clock and I don't have odd hour awakenings during my sleep.

                              I have experienced no effects from heavy or light carbohydrate consumption. I can force myself to stay awake and alter the schedule if I use strong coffee. Those days I don't feel totally awake though--sort of foggy. Unfortunately, about two thirds of my month I need the coffee if I am to conform to the rest of the world.

                              There is a schedule of naps that people on the 28 hours schedule may use. It was too bothersome for me to keep that plan.

                              I would suggest that the next time you awaken early stay up and start your day. Try that for a short time and see if there is any real difference in your life. Time to meditate, read, study, write, exercise, prepare that day's major meal in a crockpot--whatever. Time to just be alone, which is something we need once in a while. Or, if it isn't too early, nudge your wife. Maybe she isn't sleeping either.
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