I'm experimenting with Paleo for the last month, and noticed that the last couple of weeks my sleeping habits are drastically changing.
Although i'm able to fall asleep pretty fast (generally within 5 minutes) I tend do wake up in the middle of the night generally within 4 hours of falling asleep. The sleep quality afterwards really diminishes and I find my head racing through lots of thoughts. There's indeed lots of exciting things happening in my life right now (new job, side projects, new apartment,...), but the big problem is that I feel that I actually sleep now around 5 or 6 hours a night instead of the 7/8 hours I used to be able to sleep. On top of that I'm getting out of bed with headache.
I've seen already answers on how to improve the second part of my night sleep, but nothing regarding headaches. By improve the sleep quality and sleep longer will my headache also disappear?
The natural sleep pattern for human beings is to fall asleep soon after it gets dark, sleep for about four hours, wake for an hour or two, then sleep again till dawn.
That's how our paleolithic ancestors slept. In fact, that's how everybody slept until artificial lighting became widespread and cheap in the nineteenth century.
Practically nobody sleeps this way today because artificial lighting screws up our biological clock.
It sounds like for some reason your body is trying to shift into a more natural sleep pattern. Maybe that's a good thing.
Instead of fighting it, maybe you could take advantage of it. Go to sleep earlier. When you wake in the middle of the night, instead of treating it as a problem, enjoy a couple of quiet hours. Then go back to sleep.
It's paleo sleep. :)
Ekirch, AR. Sleep we have lost. The American Historical Review.
Wehr. Thomas. In short photoperiods, human sleep is biphasic. Journal of sleep research (1982). 1(2): 103–107.
I just don't sleep as much as I did when I ate high carbohydrates years ago. I get by on 5-6 hours now. I will sleep only 4-5 hours if I exercise in the evening.
I solved my headache problems upon reading a book about it (I can't recall the name). Amines are known migrane triggers:
Aged foods (aged cheeses, aged meats, dried fruits, food that has been in the can a long time, etc.) Fermented foods Ripe bananas Ripe avocados European chocolate (much worse than regular chocolate due to fermenting process) Wine
There are probably more I cannot remember at the moment.
Basically, eat fresh food, not preserved, canned, or fermented.
Fish is problematic, it particularly is hard to get fresh enough not to cause problems.
White Flower Oil (http://embrocation.50webs.com) was introduced to me by my mother. During one of my headaches, she gave me this tiny bottle of oil and told me to massage it on my temples and forehead. Amazingly, it worked! Somehow the oil penetrates into the affected area and relieves the pain.
It's likely the probs are all related, but hard to say for sure. SOme people sleep better if they up carb intake. Another thing to try is high quality magnesium supplements like natural calm. If you are not eating a lot of foods high in magnesium, then you could be deficient and this leads to insomnia and headache for some people.
How much caffeine do you consume? My missus used to drink gallons of tea and always seemed to wakeup with a headache. After switching to decaf tea the headaches have disappeared. Fortunately even with a large caffeinated tea consumption her sleep never suffered tho.
Sleeping in total darkness 9 Answers
interesting sleep study 7 Answers