2

votes

Changed sleeping habits and headache

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created February 14, 2011 at 6:05 AM

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?

Medium avatar

(5639)

on March 20, 2011
at 01:11 AM

This is a cool article, and it mentions "first sleep" and "second sleep." http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/19/opinion/19ekirch.html

288dbe9ee25e8dc72bc3b7d563d125a4

(50)

on February 15, 2011
at 05:26 AM

@Key Tones: thanks for the answer. And if you end up recalling the name of the book, let me know. I'm very interested in this subject, as you can imagine :)

82166cc32b6cf26de33b69f58fb583b1

on February 14, 2011
at 07:36 PM

Thanks for the check mark, Raul. :)

82166cc32b6cf26de33b69f58fb583b1

on February 14, 2011
at 04:26 PM

You're welcome Ali. Isn't this fascinating? I only just saw the Jessa Gamble video for the first time a few days ago as a result of a question posted by Kamal. It seems like such a wonderful thing that I'm going to try it -- all lights and computers will be off after sundown in my house for the next month! It's going to take a lot of willpower. :)

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on February 14, 2011
at 04:12 PM

Thanks for the info, Rob. I often wake in the middle of the night, but it doesn't seem to bother my overall sleep quality. It's interesting to note this is a "normal" occurrence. 8)

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7 Answers

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7
82166cc32b6cf26de33b69f58fb583b1

on February 14, 2011
at 12:06 PM

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. :)

References:

Jessa Gamble: Our natural sleep cycle (video)

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.

82166cc32b6cf26de33b69f58fb583b1

on February 14, 2011
at 07:36 PM

Thanks for the check mark, Raul. :)

82166cc32b6cf26de33b69f58fb583b1

on February 14, 2011
at 04:26 PM

You're welcome Ali. Isn't this fascinating? I only just saw the Jessa Gamble video for the first time a few days ago as a result of a question posted by Kamal. It seems like such a wonderful thing that I'm going to try it -- all lights and computers will be off after sundown in my house for the next month! It's going to take a lot of willpower. :)

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on February 14, 2011
at 04:12 PM

Thanks for the info, Rob. I often wake in the middle of the night, but it doesn't seem to bother my overall sleep quality. It's interesting to note this is a "normal" occurrence. 8)

Medium avatar

(5639)

on March 20, 2011
at 01:11 AM

This is a cool article, and it mentions "first sleep" and "second sleep." http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/19/opinion/19ekirch.html

1
Ed672277e9b8194a93160e8b06296a3b

on March 27, 2011
at 06:45 AM

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.

1
D04cf109e443df341633847c0fd739d2

on February 14, 2011
at 06:29 AM

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.

288dbe9ee25e8dc72bc3b7d563d125a4

(50)

on February 15, 2011
at 05:26 AM

@Key Tones: thanks for the answer. And if you end up recalling the name of the book, let me know. I'm very interested in this subject, as you can imagine :)

0
5de2fffda92c0bf2be7ede10cad55546

(1781)

on March 28, 2011
at 05:04 AM

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.

0
13c5a9f1678d75b93f269cdcf69f14d5

(2339)

on February 14, 2011
at 10:07 PM

Also consider salicylate intolerance. Google this term. Fail-safe diet

0
Fac1af832cc3c6a20059c41411fd0f6b

(1548)

on February 14, 2011
at 06:25 AM

Caffeine seems more effective now for me. I had to Quit consuming it within 6 hours of my bed time if I wanted to sleep.

0
62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on February 14, 2011
at 06:18 AM

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.

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