On my path of search for better sleep I’ve experimented with a ton of supplements and methods. Living in the Northern European climate one would find it impossible to avoid sauna. Used for centuries as a social and health promoting activity saunas are touted as one of the best ways to detox and relax. Naturally, I had to ask: will a sauna help me sleep better or make things much worse because of my adrenal fatigue?
As experience showed it will all depend on a variety of factors.
First: why would a sauna be a problem in the first place? Answer is one and only: heat. Heat means stress for your body. It also means a massive dehydration. We all know much too well that any type of stress on our organs will exacerbate insomnia and fatigue so why even bother? Well, it looks like the right amount of heat will relax our nervous system and sweat will remove many toxins that stress our body in the first place.
Second: Your experience with a sauna will largely depend on the stage of your adrenal fatigue. If you are advanced where you crash easily from supplements or any illness then you would be smart to forget about saunas entirely and enjoy warm baths instead. When I was at my worst I couldn’t even think about sauna: it was way too taxing and way too depleting. However, if your state of health is a bit more stable then read on.
The following advice is all about managing heat and dehydration so that you can make sauna the healing experience that you wish [continue reading…]
I had heard many times about people using animal adrenal glandulars to improve adrenal fatigue but what got my attention was that many claim to use it to improve their digestion, reduce insomnia and give them a boost during a detox or heavy metal chelation. In this post I share with you most relevant research, my experience with adrenal cortex extract (ACE), the benefits I experienced, as well as side effects, and finally I’ll give you some advice whether you should try it or skip it.
What is Adrenal Cortex
Adrenal glandular supplements are derived from organs of either cows, pigs or sheep. As an organ adrenals are involved in hormone production and various regulatory processes.
When you search for adrenal glandulars you often find claims such as: “the glandular tissues used in our product have been processed to remove the hormones and steroids that may be naturally present in these glands. The supplement provides natural building blocks that support optimal adrenal function so that the adrenal glands themselves can produce healthy amounts of the adrenal hormones as needed.” One producer claims: “bovine adrenal cortex supports healthy adrenal function by improving stamina and promoting an energetic feeling.” Some people on forums call ACE simply “food for adrenals.” So, energetic feeling, food, eh? We’ll see about [continue reading…]
Half a year ago I discovered CBD oil from a friend on Facebook who successfully recovered from insomnia and Lyme disease. Once I started researching this supplement I couldn’t believe I hadn’t heard of it before. People all over the boards were claiming to have discovered relief from insomnia and improved health from CBD. I had to jump on it and try it so I could see what all the hype is all about. Being in Eastern Europe I figured I’d have to have it shipped from US but little did I know that it was available at a local pharmacy! I waited about no minutes to go get it.
Learning Curve – Why is There No Manual For It?
I took my first dose of a few drops during a day and didn’t feel much. Next day I took it in the evening and bam! – hardly any sleep that night. You should have heard me cuss at this “crap” in the morning. I was livid. 30 EUR down the toilet for another supplement with a paradoxical effect. As I researched it further I found out some people do, in fact, experience stimulation rather than calming effects of CBD.
Thanks goodness, there was an explanation for this… As I detailed in my previous research article on CBD benefits for sleep, I had to master CBD oil’s bi-phasic effect: small dose is stimulating, big dose is calming. So I experimented with both and definitely felt the difference. This gave me enough confidence to try CBD at night again. When I did I had another bad night… What’s up?!?! Even larger doses were alerting enough to keep me [continue reading…]
Poria Five Formula, aka Five-Ingredient Powder with Poria has been so helpful to me that I believe more people should be aware of its wonderful properties. This review is based on personal experience and my particular symptoms set.
While studying my condition from the Chinese medicine perspective I could not help but to be constantly led to conclusion that I have a serious spleen deficiency. Now, for those of you who haven’t delved much into TCM just keep in mind that ‘spleen deficiency’ is a wide encompassing term for various digestions issues, while ‘kidney yin deficiency’ is adrenal fatigue/hyper thyroid issues.
Spleen deficiency for me manifests as sluggish digestion, distention, bloating, inner coldness, strong preference for warm and cooked foods. Raw salad eaten in the evening was almost a guarantee for a sleepless night with multiple bathroom visits to urinate. Raw and cold foods induced either heat in my abdomen or chills in my core. On top of that I would feel stressed and restless. How is this even possible?
In Chinese medicine this points to both spleen and kidney deficiency. The two are very interrelated and you know this because adrenal fatigue is usually accompanied by poor digestion and various gut issues.This made me study and test various herbal formulas like [continue reading…]
This week I’m ripping out my last silver (amalgam) fillings. I want this toxic garbage out of my body for good. This is the most expensive experiment yet but knowing what I know now I just couldn’t ignore this potential hazard any more.
If you have any amalgam silver fillings (they are 40-50% mercury) in your mouth or suspect you’ve been exposed to excess mercury from your environment or food then read on, perhaps this will stir up enough curiosity in you to investigate this issue further. Perhaps your mouth too, might have been slowly poisoning you for years!
Why am I suspecting mercury toxicity? Because as I observe my body, test supplements and educate myself about heavy metals it always leads me to this advice: multiple health issues that nobody can figure out suggests mercury as the root cause.
The key indicator that heavy metals could be at play is when your symptoms either closely resemble or perfectly fit a host of various health issues like [continue reading…]
Amazing. Nothing short of amazing. Activated charcoal is really helping me sleep better by preventing waking up from feeling hot. It’s another winner in my small arsenal of remedies that actually work.
I’ve also had a big breakthrough in understanding how my system works. For the longest time I was blaming various foods for keeping me up at night by drawing a direct cause and effect between what I ate that day and how I felt and slept that night.This made me eliminate a ton of foods and shift from supplement to supplement.
This created immense confusion as I might have been fine on a supplement for a night or two and then have an awful night afterwards. I would almost always blame the effect on that supplement and quit it “just in case.” This really caused a lot of anxiety as I could have been taking and eating the right stuff but if I had a rough night I had to eliminate. But recently, I realized that it wasn’t one particular food that was causing me grief but the BUILD UP of various byproducts (metabolites) of digestion or [continue reading…]
Looking for solutions to my health crisis has been nothing short of a roller-coaster with a very hard landing. I’ve explored so many directions, tried so many diets and protocols without much success that I’ve come to one single conclusion – this is a total mystery to me. Symptoms are just too vast, always changing as if I was possessed. Well, it appears that in Traditional Chinese Medicine this is a diagnosis as well. They refer to it as the Gu Syndrome.
While I exploring it I decided that this is something that makes a lot of sense to me so I started working with a TCM practitioner who claims to have gone through a similar hell as mine. I committed to giving it a shot but at the same time I just received my genetic test results and learned that I have a few gene variations like MTHFR, COMT, CBS and some others that effect my methylation pathways. Basically, I’m a poor detox-er and methylator, meaning there is a ‘malfunctioning’ or slowing of how various components convert into vitamins, amino acids and so on. This is what the science of epigenetics studies these days.
I e-mailed my guy asking what he thinks about addressing the genetics before going for the Gu Syndrome. I was rather surprised by his answer and this is why I’ve decided to share it with you. I also share my conclusion [continue reading…]
I’ve been absolutely obsessed about putting this insomnia puzzle together and recently I’ve discovered a huge clue to solving this entire riddle – low stomach acid, aka hypochloridia. It appears that low stomach acid can be a main culprit behind a number of health issues like adrenal fatigue, food sensitivities, sluggish liver and of course those soul crushing sleepless nights.
In my case it probably all started with stress and H-Pylori infection but I’m not 100% sure because this could be the “chicken or egg first?” situation. I’ve shared my struggles with H Pylory and the natural cure in my other blog post. One thing that I’m certain of is that behind both the H Pylori and Low Stomach Acid hides the beast called stress. In my case it was low grade, extended, hardly noticeable stress that accompanied me for years over years.
The Stress, Nervous System and Digestion Connection
Many people are fine dealing with sporadic stress; our CNS is designed to cope with this. Problem is, there are certain body types like mine (think Vata in Ayurveda who are tall, slender, quick on their feet, always in a hurry, and easily excitable) to whom extended low grade stress will slowly wreak havoc on the nervous system. Certain gene mutations like COMT are said to also contribute to dominance of sympathetic nervous system. This type of person [continue reading…]
I’ve noticed this a couple of years ago and can not deny it – regular, OTC pain relievers and anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen [Advil, Motrin, and Nurofen] and acetaminophen/paracetamol [Tylenol] (aka NSAIDs) help me achieve deep and more refreshing sleep.
Could ibuprofen and acetaminophen effect GABA receptors? Could this have something to do with desensitizing the signals from a week vagus nerve? And is it possible that these meds desensitize the brain from the stimulating action of excess of histamine and glutamine?
One obvious reason that anti-inflammatories could help one sleep is by reducing pain but I’m not in pain. So what’s up with all that?!
Science is Clueless?
What does science actually have to say about the mechanism behind Tylenol’s action? After some digging I’m stunned: [continue reading…]
What separates a serious insomniac from a hobbyist? A serious insomniac wakes up in the morning (granted he slept at all) and is already anxious about the coming evening when he’ll be lying in bed wondering whether this is going to be the night where he’ll finally get some shut-eye. This is not a joke.
Most of us invest quite a bit of anxiety in this process. Anything we do, eat and engage in is a calculated move to maximize our sleep the following night. Longing for sleep is a totally consuming process; it’s an obsession we secretly hide throughout the day.
In fact, I’m so determined to find the root cause of my insomnia that sometimes I wonder how much worse I’m making everything by investing so much energy in resisting my reality. After much pondering and learning more about the nature of our minds I’m now thoroughly convinced – what we resist, persists.
Guided by this universal law, can we make a logical leap that the easiest way to fall asleep is to actually try NOT to sleep?
A while back, during my QiGong practice I decided to take a radical turn and accept my plight. Instead of constantly worrying about insomnia I am [continue reading…]