5

votes

Can salt replace carbohydrates as a sleep aid?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 10, 2012 at 6:36 PM

I've upped my carb intake lately by eating lots of apples (6 a day). It helps me sleep, but still, there are on and off days. Some days I wake up, some days I don't. Trying a different brand of magnesium (MgT) helped, but not enough.

Now, I analysed my diet and the only thing that isn't constant is salt : when I eat fish or liver, I don't eat salt (since I don't like those combined), and I usually sleep worse. So I did some googling and found multiple articles confirming that sodium makes sleep better. I've thought about this multiple times in the past, since I used to follow Bee's candida diet but never used salt. She recommends 1 teaspoon of salt and a low-carb version of the paleo diet.

I also remember that Melissa said that she had problems after 2 years of paleo (too low sodium). A lot of people say that, after 6 months, the benefits of low-carbing disappear (this happened to me). Would salt be the cause of this?

Does anybody here have more experience with this? Does salt make your sleep better? Could this be an alternative to upping carbs to make sleep better? I sure hope so!

Oh god I hope I fix my sleep before school starts again or I'll have to skip lots of classes so I feel fine.

Bfa1c9eacfc94a1b62f3a39b574480c6

(3700)

on March 24, 2012
at 07:02 AM

Framework, not reenactment, is what Paleo, or real living, is.

095ef76482234d3db444b77d7ed01c29

(2755)

on February 12, 2012
at 02:17 AM

GABA is awesome too. But catnip and valerian are a lot cheaper. GABA is also used to boost GH...but then sprints and sleep will boost it too. Since we can't get GHB anymore. :( Damn fools using it for the wrong reasons took it away. But GABA and GHB...chemicals. The others...roots and herbs. Always a better first choice ... well most of the time. :) When I had cats (now we only have reptiles...much easier on my allergies)...this was an issue AnnA...hard to keep them out of my catnip.

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on February 11, 2012
at 11:44 AM

On another note I almost always wake up at 2-3 am unable to go back to sleep. I have developed a fool-proof routine that does the trick though - get up, do about 10 minutes of yoga-type stretching (my hamstrings and back are often quite stiff), drink a glass of ice cold water, and go back to bed. That's not saying it would work for anyone else, but somehow the stretching does it for me.

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on February 11, 2012
at 11:42 AM

I agree with you, Korion. Apples are incredibly good for you - here are just a few reasons (lipid metabolism is one biggie) http://turbocharged.us.com/uncategorized/an-apple-a-day-keeps-the-doctor-away/. People on this site regularly talk about eating meat/coconut oil/sweet potatoes on a daily basis without the bat of an eye - but for some reason fruit is often demonized. If you have a good source of organic apples, that's fantastic, they're chock full of micronutrients. I eat at least 2 a day, myself.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 08:07 AM

I heard of valerian root. I thought of trying GABA first, but if you say it works great... Thanks a lot Andy!

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 08:03 AM

Hence my question is "can salt replace carbohydrates as a sleep aid", not "is 6 apples a day too much". That's a question only my body can answer.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 08:02 AM

Bacon or eggs every day isn't paleo either, but you don't hear many people say that do you? Are you seriously saying apples is "crazy shite"? Apples are the only organic local fruits I can find here except citrus, though I don't tolerate those well (I believe I'm histamine intolerant). Can't believe people are still hating on fructose like this. I don't tolerate starches, btw.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 07:54 AM

I didn't say anywhere I have adrenal fatigue though...

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 07:52 AM

Very well possible, I thought about it for a while but couldn't see how it'd help with sleep.

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on February 10, 2012
at 11:10 PM

If "an apple a day keeps the doctor away", do six apples keep six doctors away?

5e5ff249c9161b8cd96d7eff6043bc3a

(4713)

on February 10, 2012
at 09:24 PM

I agree. I think there are probably better ways to up your carb intake. Sweet potatoes, maybe even some white rice. Six apples seems excessive.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on February 10, 2012
at 09:20 PM

Just don't let the cat smell the catnip or you will have an excited cat that keeps you awake!

  • B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

    asked by

    (8938)
  • Views
    2.3K
  • Last Activity
    1460D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

6 Answers

3
0d540aba37cac0c3c88195fb83ce649b

on February 10, 2012
at 08:42 PM

As soon as I hear anything freaky like "I eat six apples every day" its an alarm bell.

Lets get sensible for a minute. "Paleo" meant eating similarly to how pre agricultural humans ate. We did not eat six apples a day. We did not eat mountains of agricultural grains. We ate a wide variety of foods, all of which shared the characteristics of growing naturally. We ate meat, vegetables, and fruit, as we could get our hands on them. Now, we might not say today that this is the best diet possible in the universe, but where did you get the idea that six apples a day were good? It amazes me that people can eat some crazy shite then ask if its "good".

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 08:02 AM

Bacon or eggs every day isn't paleo either, but you don't hear many people say that do you? Are you seriously saying apples is "crazy shite"? Apples are the only organic local fruits I can find here except citrus, though I don't tolerate those well (I believe I'm histamine intolerant). Can't believe people are still hating on fructose like this. I don't tolerate starches, btw.

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on February 11, 2012
at 11:42 AM

I agree with you, Korion. Apples are incredibly good for you - here are just a few reasons (lipid metabolism is one biggie) http://turbocharged.us.com/uncategorized/an-apple-a-day-keeps-the-doctor-away/. People on this site regularly talk about eating meat/coconut oil/sweet potatoes on a daily basis without the bat of an eye - but for some reason fruit is often demonized. If you have a good source of organic apples, that's fantastic, they're chock full of micronutrients. I eat at least 2 a day, myself.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 08:03 AM

Hence my question is "can salt replace carbohydrates as a sleep aid", not "is 6 apples a day too much". That's a question only my body can answer.

5e5ff249c9161b8cd96d7eff6043bc3a

(4713)

on February 10, 2012
at 09:24 PM

I agree. I think there are probably better ways to up your carb intake. Sweet potatoes, maybe even some white rice. Six apples seems excessive.

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on February 10, 2012
at 11:10 PM

If "an apple a day keeps the doctor away", do six apples keep six doctors away?

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on February 11, 2012
at 11:44 AM

On another note I almost always wake up at 2-3 am unable to go back to sleep. I have developed a fool-proof routine that does the trick though - get up, do about 10 minutes of yoga-type stretching (my hamstrings and back are often quite stiff), drink a glass of ice cold water, and go back to bed. That's not saying it would work for anyone else, but somehow the stretching does it for me.

Bfa1c9eacfc94a1b62f3a39b574480c6

(3700)

on March 24, 2012
at 07:02 AM

Framework, not reenactment, is what Paleo, or real living, is.

2
B6a1a97e76abce1a1563579c0931a03f

on February 10, 2012
at 11:36 PM

You tagged the post adrenal fatigue and the only carbs you're eating are 6 apples? If you're in legitimate adrenal fatigue you need your carbs and salt (and protein) as your body craves them. I'm actually afraid for you. I'm currently recovering from stage 3D adrenal exhaustion and believe when I tell you, you do not want to get to this point. Take care of yourself.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 07:54 AM

I didn't say anywhere I have adrenal fatigue though...

2
6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on February 10, 2012
at 09:09 PM

I would say yes, but indirectly, not as a sleep aid in and of itself.

When I get sufficient salt, particularly in the morning, I find it easier to be fully awake and have energy to go do all those things that will tire me out, my adrenal health slowly improves over the course of days and weeks with enough salt, and then at the end of the day I find it easier to fall asleep.

2
095ef76482234d3db444b77d7ed01c29

(2755)

on February 10, 2012
at 08:37 PM

Many who keep carbs below 30g a day seem to have better sleep anyway after a while...once used to it. For some, it's just the opposite though.

One thing that I've found to work for many people, helping them get good sleep, even better than with prescription sleep medications, is catnip. Just buy the catnip at a health food store, organic store, or where ever you can find it in your area and brew it into a tea. It has a relaxing effect and where benzodiazepines will put someone to sleep but not keep them there...catnip helps one fall asleep then stay asleep. Another helpful thing is vandal root. It has almost a benzo like quality. I think in modern times it's sold as valerian root and it's best when ground and used in capsules. Vandal root tea smells like a combination of dirty gym socks and wet dog.

Vandal Root + Catnip = sleep all night long and wake refreshed and rested.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 08:07 AM

I heard of valerian root. I thought of trying GABA first, but if you say it works great... Thanks a lot Andy!

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on February 10, 2012
at 09:20 PM

Just don't let the cat smell the catnip or you will have an excited cat that keeps you awake!

095ef76482234d3db444b77d7ed01c29

(2755)

on February 12, 2012
at 02:17 AM

GABA is awesome too. But catnip and valerian are a lot cheaper. GABA is also used to boost GH...but then sprints and sleep will boost it too. Since we can't get GHB anymore. :( Damn fools using it for the wrong reasons took it away. But GABA and GHB...chemicals. The others...roots and herbs. Always a better first choice ... well most of the time. :) When I had cats (now we only have reptiles...much easier on my allergies)...this was an issue AnnA...hard to keep them out of my catnip.

2
5e5ff249c9161b8cd96d7eff6043bc3a

(4713)

on February 10, 2012
at 07:56 PM

Might not be the salt but the iodine. You might be iodine deficient. Could experiment with a low dose of Lugol's and see if it helps.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 11, 2012
at 07:52 AM

Very well possible, I thought about it for a while but couldn't see how it'd help with sleep.

1
5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on February 10, 2012
at 07:40 PM

I haven't noticed any impact on my part. Checking the net it seems pretty inconclusive. Some say it helps sleep, some say it hurts sleep. I don't think any are in the context of a low carb/paleo diet though. Probably way too many variables.

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!