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  1. #11
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    [QUOTE=YogaBare;1178639]Define "normal"

    Everyone's stress hormones elevate at night, but for some of us any additional little changes in diet or lifestyle that stress the body send our stress hormones over the edge. If I'm low carb I cant sleep for more than 3 to 4 hours, seven nights a week. It gets hellish.

    Thanks YogaBare! I have been bundling up a bit, and I'm sleeping through the night that way. It's the falling asleep part that is getting me. It definitely feels like my adrenals are firing- which is leading me to believe my body is searching for carbs. I don't think i'm fat adapted yet, which may be the problem. My carbs aren't even too low (175g-200g). I'm hesitant to change anything because my hypoglycemia during the day has improved dramatically. Maybe I need to ride this out til I adapt? so confused!!

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    @ YogaBare, I should add I am hypothyroid and have about 25 lbs to lose fun stuff

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    Quote Originally Posted by AMC View Post
    Thanks YogaBare! I have been bundling up a bit, and I'm sleeping through the night that way. It's the falling asleep part that is getting me. It definitely feels like my adrenals are firing- which is leading me to believe my body is searching for carbs. I don't think i'm fat adapted yet, which may be the problem. My carbs aren't even too low (175g-200g). I'm hesitant to change anything because my hypoglycemia during the day has improved dramatically. Maybe I need to ride this out til I adapt? so confused!!
    That's great that you're sleeping the night through! I remember you telling me that actually.

    That carb level sounds okay, but what was your level before? Overall calories are important too, as are the foods you eat last thing in the evening. Can you run us through a typical day of eating? What used you eat? What are your overall calories? And what were they before?

    Also, how long does it take you to fall asleep? Is your mind racing? My instinct is that you're pumping adrenaline, as this is a common side effect of hypothyroidism. (Which is why I'm curious about what you were eating before).

    I feel your pain! I'm borderline hypothyroid so our sleep difficulties are probably related. Hopefully some of the things I've figured out will be useful to you.
    Last edited by YogaBare; 05-02-2013 at 12:37 PM.
    "I think the basic anti-aging diet is also the best diet for prevention and treatment of diabetes, scleroderma, and the various "connective tissue diseases." This would emphasize high protein, low unsaturated fats, low iron, and high antioxidant consumption, with a moderate or low starch consumption.

    In practice, this means that a major part of the diet should be milk, cheese, eggs, shellfish, fruits and coconut oil, with vitamin E and salt as the safest supplements."

    - Ray Peat

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    May seem counter productive, and not really "primal", but a small bowl of ice-cream before bed worked for me. That and reducing my fluid intake throughout the day (or up salt).

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    Oh, and if you did try ice cream, make sure it isn't full if crap.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by YogaBare View Post
    That's great that you're sleeping the night through! I remember you telling me that actually.

    That carb level sounds okay, but what was your level before? Overall calories are important too, as are the foods you eat last thing in the evening. Can you run us through a typical day of eating? What used you eat? What are your overall calories? And what were they before?

    Also, how long does it take you to fall asleep? Is your mind racing? My instinct is that you're pumping adrenaline, as this is a common side effect of hypothyroidism. (Which is why I'm curious about what you were eating before).

    I feel your pain! I'm borderline hypothyroid so our sleep difficulties are probably related. Hopefully some of the things I've figured out will be useful to you.
    You're so wise! Ok, so before I was eating 2100-2200 cals to maintain, low-fat (probably 60g) and high-ish-carb (about 250-350g), moderate protein. I didn't really count macros so I don't have exact numbers, but those are probably pretty good estimates. I did count calories though.

    Now, I've kept my calories the same (2100-2200), my protein is about 100-120g, carbs 175-200g, fat about 100+g. I'm also pretty active, nothing extreme though. Bfast is always 3 eggs, butter, piece of fruit. Lunch is usually a big salad with meat, oil, veggies, and a sweet potato with butter. afternoon snack is usually HB eggs, berries, some nuts. Dinner is usually very similar to lunch.

    I definitely feel like i'm pumping adrenaline. I've had insomnia in the past, it finally improved about a year ago, and now it randomly came back a week into primal. I'm feeling discouraged. I'm getting mixed advice to either change my food or just wait out the adjustment.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AMC View Post
    You're so wise! Ok, so before I was eating 2100-2200 cals to maintain, low-fat (probably 60g) and high-ish-carb (about 250-350g), moderate protein. I didn't really count macros so I don't have exact numbers, but those are probably pretty good estimates. I did count calories though.

    Now, I've kept my calories the same (2100-2200), my protein is about 100-120g, carbs 175-200g, fat about 100+g. I'm also pretty active, nothing extreme though. Bfast is always 3 eggs, butter, piece of fruit. Lunch is usually a big salad with meat, oil, veggies, and a sweet potato with butter. afternoon snack is usually HB eggs, berries, some nuts. Dinner is usually very similar to lunch.

    I definitely feel like i'm pumping adrenaline. I've had insomnia in the past, it finally improved about a year ago, and now it randomly came back a week into primal. I'm feeling discouraged. I'm getting mixed advice to either change my food or just wait out the adjustment.
    Ah, okay - a few things.

    First, with you diet I can see a potential problem. How many cals per day are you getting from nuts? They're not a good source of carbs imo - particularly for sleeping. I'd switch the sweet potato to evening time. When I was really struggling with sleep eggs weren't good at night time either: they weren't heavy enough. I would aim to have quite a balanced meal every evening: protein, fat, carbs.

    I agree with Matt about the sugar: it really can help sleep, but I know in my case I would have to eat a ton of honey before it had any effect (which is pretty counter productive to weight loss ) One thing you could try is a herbal tea with milk, some honey, and a spoon of gelatine before bed. I like peppermint (I know it sounds gross but it tastes like hot mint ice cream! Kind of...)

    Also, you know that people with hypothyroidism shouldn't eat salad? It's like throwing a wet cloth on a fire.

    Secondly, maybe "waiting it out" works for some people, but it didn't resolve itself in my case. I had to find the sweet spot of the right amount of cals, the right foods, and the right macros. (I have no idea what either of these are as I don't count, but I actually think thats a truer way of gaging. You can't put numbers on what you need: it varies from day to day).

    I really believe that everyone has a unique constitution: some people are fine no matter what they eat; some people need more hacking If you're hypo you'll prob need to a lot of experimenting to find a way that you sleep well, feel good, and have energy. You seem quite patient though, so I'm sure you'll get there

    Thirdly, have you lost any weight on this woe yet? What made you decide to try to lose weight by keeping your cals the same but going high fat? And what was your woe before - was it SAD?

    Finally, this is the question doctors will ask you: what do you do before bed? ("sleep hygiene") How is your stress? Since you were sleeping fine before and haven't changed your routine I doubt this is the issue but it's worth taking into consideration.
    Last edited by YogaBare; 05-02-2013 at 02:41 PM.
    "I think the basic anti-aging diet is also the best diet for prevention and treatment of diabetes, scleroderma, and the various "connective tissue diseases." This would emphasize high protein, low unsaturated fats, low iron, and high antioxidant consumption, with a moderate or low starch consumption.

    In practice, this means that a major part of the diet should be milk, cheese, eggs, shellfish, fruits and coconut oil, with vitamin E and salt as the safest supplements."

    - Ray Peat

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by YogaBare View Post
    Ah, okay - a few things.

    First, with you diet I can see a potential problem. How many cals per day are you getting from nuts? They're not a good source of carbs imo - particularly for sleeping. I'd switch the sweet potato to evening time. When I was really struggling with sleep eggs weren't good at night time either: they weren't heavy enough. I would aim to have quite a balanced meal every evening: protein, fat, carbs.

    I agree with Matt about the sugar: it really can help sleep, but I know in my case I would have to eat a ton of honey before it had any effect (which is pretty counter productive to weight loss ) One thing you could try is a herbal tea with milk, some honey, and a spoon of gelatine before bed. I like peppermint (I know it sounds gross but it tastes like hot mint ice cream! Kind of...)

    Also, you know that people with hypothyroidism shouldn't eat salad? It's like throwing a wet cloth on a fire.

    Secondly, maybe "waiting it out" works for some people, but it didn't resolve itself in my case. I had to find the sweet spot of the right amount of cals, the right foods, and the right macros. (I have no idea what either of these are as I don't count, but I actually think thats a truer way of gaging. You can't put numbers on what you need: it varies from day to day).

    I really believe that everyone has a unique constitution: some people are fine no matter what they eat; some people need more hacking If you're hypo you'll prob need to a lot of experimenting to find a way that you sleep well, feel good, and have energy. You seem quite patient though, so I'm sure you'll get there

    Thirdly, have you lost any weight on this woe yet? What made you decide to try to lose weight by keeping your cals the same but going high fat? And what was your woe before - was it SAD?

    Finally, this is the question doctors will ask you: what do you do before bed? ("sleep hygiene") How is your stress? Since you were sleeping fine before and haven't changed your routine I doubt this is the issue but it's worth taking into consideration.
    Thank you! I'm going to try ditching the nuts and see what happens. I will also have a sugary snack before bed, and eat my sweet potato later in the day.

    I haven't lost weight, but I haven't gained it either. I actually feel a lot less bloated so maybe that's a good sign. My macros switched to high fat, lower carb naturally just by going primal. I figured I should "primalize" myself before cutting calories, to see if just switching my woe had any affect. Yes, before I was eating SAD, although i wasn't too extreme- i ate my fair share of "protein bars" and whole grains, but I never really ate a lot of refined carbs (no white bread or anything). Just higher carb in general. I also ate low fat dairy.

    Admittedly, my stress is high from trying to get adjusted on this woe. I think some of the insomnia is coming from thinking too much about not being able to fall asleep "what if i didn't eat enough carbs, i bet my cortisol is so high right now, etc" is playing in my head when I try to fall asleep. This vicious cycle started after one night of staying up too late and then my sleep cycle went down the tube. It's hard to tell if it's stemming from stress or nutrition. I bet it's a combination.

    Before bed I usually read for an hour. It's what I've always done- actually before primal I could easily fall asleep while watching tv then get a great nights sleep. But I also wasn't thinking about my sleep so I wasn't so paranoid!

  9. #19
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    Some things I found that worked for me with sleeping (that have been echoed in this thread)
    1. Take magnesium at night
    2. Have a heated banana (potassium + carbs) with some cream (fat) and chocolate (yum). This makes me feel hot at night, not cold.
    Disclaimer: I eat 'meat and vegetables' ala Primal, although I don't agree with the carb curve. I like Perfect Health Diet and WAPF Lactofermentation a lot.

    Griff's cholesterol primer
    5,000 Cal Fat <> 5,000 Cal Carbs
    Winterbike: What I eat every day is what other people eat to treat themselves.
    TQP: I find for me that nutrition is much more important than what I do in the gym.
    bloodorchid is always right

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    Quote Originally Posted by AMC View Post
    Thank you! I'm going to try ditching the nuts and see what happens. I will also have a sugary snack before bed, and eat my sweet potato later in the day.

    I haven't lost weight, but I haven't gained it either. I actually feel a lot less bloated so maybe that's a good sign. My macros switched to high fat, lower carb naturally just by going primal. I figured I should "primalize" myself before cutting calories, to see if just switching my woe had any affect. Yes, before I was eating SAD, although i wasn't too extreme- i ate my fair share of "protein bars" and whole grains, but I never really ate a lot of refined carbs (no white bread or anything). Just higher carb in general. I also ate low fat dairy.

    Admittedly, my stress is high from trying to get adjusted on this woe. I think some of the insomnia is coming from thinking too much about not being able to fall asleep "what if i didn't eat enough carbs, i bet my cortisol is so high right now, etc" is playing in my head when I try to fall asleep. This vicious cycle started after one night of staying up too late and then my sleep cycle went down the tube. It's hard to tell if it's stemming from stress or nutrition. I bet it's a combination.

    Before bed I usually read for an hour. It's what I've always done- actually before primal I could easily fall asleep while watching tv then get a great nights sleep. But I also wasn't thinking about my sleep so I wasn't so paranoid!
    Ah, okay There's never just one reason for any issue: it's usually multi-factoral.

    Regarding the food: Try going back to higher carb but without whole grains or whatever. I'm not saying this is a better way to eat, but it would be interesting to see if eating higher carb makes you feel less stressed. Primal is reasonably low carb, but Paleo is not.

    You could be less bloated cos' you've cut out whole grains (and dairy?) And yeah, eat something more substantial than nuts in the evening. Don't be shy with your carbs at that point.

    Regarding the stress: Have you ever mediated? Some people focus on their breath, but that doesn't work for me. Another one is imagining like youre looking through the centre of your forehead, beyond the blackness. What i find really helpful saying a mantra over and over when I'm falling asleep. I recommend a neutral statement that that acknowledges your current state, instead of trying to be positive. So in your case, you could say something like "I know my mind is busy". IF that makes sense!
    "I think the basic anti-aging diet is also the best diet for prevention and treatment of diabetes, scleroderma, and the various "connective tissue diseases." This would emphasize high protein, low unsaturated fats, low iron, and high antioxidant consumption, with a moderate or low starch consumption.

    In practice, this means that a major part of the diet should be milk, cheese, eggs, shellfish, fruits and coconut oil, with vitamin E and salt as the safest supplements."

    - Ray Peat

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