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Primal Insomniac

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  • Primal Insomniac

    Hey folks- 42 year old therapist here from Portland. I've played with eating primally off and on for the last 6 months and I've decided I want to eat like and live like this for an extended period of time. But I also want to add in a few things that I am hoping will help with my very frustrating inability to sleep normally. So I will also be avoiding all caffeine, stop taking all sleep aids and limit my screen time (internet, games, movies) to an hour a day.

    My insomnia developed about 6 years ago when I had my first kid (second one now 4 months old) and I started a very stressful job working as an inpatient therapist for mentally ill folks. As time went on, I went from having a hard time sleeping occasionally to having a hard time sleeping properly every night. Often I would wake up in the middle of the night for long stretches, or wake up too early and not be able to go back to bed. Sometimes I got 5 hours of sleep, sometimes 7, sometimes 3.

    My insomnia has gotten better since I have reduced caffeine, cut my work hours and started eating mostly primally, but I'm not there yet. If any folks have other tips I'd be happy to hear them, but mostly this will be a place where I can daily log in my food intake and my habits. This is a way of helping me keep self aware and accountable.

    Much thanks to Mark and all the folks here for such a valuable and important site. It truly has already changed my life.

  • #2
    Hi, PTownie! Welcome!

    I've also had a lot of issues with insomnia. One thing that really made a difference was taking a magnesium citrate supplement at bedtime. I'll still have the occasional awful night, but it's no longer almost every night.


    • #3
      OK- without further ado- Day one.

      Today I had
      - 4 oz. of pork chop
      -salad with pumpkin seeds and 3 slices of ham
      -handful of almonds, apple with almond butter
      - scallop stir fry with peas, onion, carrots, mushrooms
      - another apple.

      Slept only 5 hours the night before. Work stress is getting to me.


      • #4
        Day two:

        Got 8 hours of sleep last night but had to take 5 mg Valium. Really want to end that.

        Today I ate

        Asparagus, onion, collards and pork sausage for breakfast
        Handful of almonds and a few dried cranberries for snack
        Salad with smoked salmon for lunch
        Another handful of almonds and a banana for snack
        Chicken, baba ganoush and a little rice for dinner.

        Took a long walk today.

        Also, I'm taking ashwaghanda, damiana and astragalus capsules along with 10,000 mg of vitamin D and 2400 mg of fish oil a day.

        Finally I'm drinking two cups of dandelion tea and several pints of oatstraw/clover tea a day.


        • #5
          @gay panda...yes the magnesium...I keep forgetting to take that...thanks.


          • #6
            OK- today I had-

            breakfast- 3 eggs with asparagus mushrooms and onions
            handful of walnuts and almonds
            lunch- ground beef with veggie stir fry
            lara bar some melon
            dinner- ground beef and veggie stir fry
            lara bar and some melon

            Oh and hot chocolate in the afternoon. Hmmm....caffeine in that...hope it doesnt mess with me.

            Did the same tea and supplement regimen.

            slept 8 restless hours last night meds. Good energy today. Went for a walk with my 5 month old and Dad. pretty sweet.
            Last edited by PTownie; 06-12-2013, 10:36 PM.


            • #7
              Have you thought about segmented sleeping ? - maybe your 'insomnia' is just you are now better at sleeping a few hours, then get up for an hour and then sleep a few hours more.

              Mark has articles on segmented sleeping and Reducing blue/white light in the evening to aid sleep.

              Have you considered changing jobs?


              • #8
                Try Chamomile tea. And be careful of apples close to bed time! Bananas are the best night time fruit in my experience as a fellow insomniac, if you do need something sweet.