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Insomnia and CFS, whats a good supplement to take ...?

Discussion in 'General Treatment' started by Bansaw, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. Bansaw

    Bansaw Senior Member

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    In the past two weeks I have had the unwelcome development of Insomnia.
    Mind unable to stop thinking and not able to drop off to sleep until 3am or thereabouts.
    There's nothing that is a huge extra stress factor in my mind so I am thinking of maybe a hormone or neurotransmitter issue.

    Anybody got any opinion on what supplement / approach might help me in this situation ?

    (I am thinking already of ordering Valarian root. Tried a spoonful of honey last night, glass of cherry juice and sleepytime bedtime tea.)
     
  2. PatJ

    PatJ Forum Support Assistant

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    I have a blog post that provides a lot of information about the methods and supplements I use to get a better night of sleep.
     
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  3. keenly

    keenly Senior Member

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    Circadian rhythm.

    You need AM sunlight, then block out blue and green light at night.

    Get out in the sun 6-10AM, then wear truedark glasses at night.
     
  4. Runner5

    Runner5 Senior Member

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    Here are a few things on my list.

    CALM magnesium blend in the evening used as directed
    Drinking a protein shake before bed
    Taking L-Tryptophan 500mg, or 5HTP
    Stop drinking caffeine by noon daily
    Turn off the computer by 5pm
     
  5. Wishful

    Wishful Senior Member

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    Melatonin is a common supplement for insomnia, but I've heard that people can get dependent on it. I'm not sure of dependency from others, such as TRP or 5-HTP.

    Activities that involve mental alertness, such as driving or socializing, seems to trigger the 'can't fall asleep when I go to bed' type of insomnia. Sugar triggers the 'wake up at 2 AM and know I'm not going to fall back asleep' type. Reading before bed using an LED light (lots of blue I'm sure) probably isn't helping my sleep patterns.
     
  6. BadBadBear

    BadBadBear Senior Member

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    B2 and B3 both make me sleepy, and I take them before bed. You can try these in the day in case they keep you awake.

    Holy basil a few hours before bed can lower high cortisol. Zinc can also do this.

    Slow release melatonin is helpful. For me the effect wears off around 2-3, so l usually take a small dose of sublingual melatonin to go back to sleep.

    And if all else is failing, half a Benadryl will knock me out. Sometimes a few nights of that will reset my sleep routine and I get back to falling asleep without any.
     
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  7. Runner5

    Runner5 Senior Member

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    Melatonin, 5-HTP derive from L-Tryptophan -- all are non-habit forming, non-dependancy. They will not cause withdrawal. The main side effect is feeling sluggish in the morning. Melatonin can cause vomiting so I usually recommend L-Tryptophan, but a friend of mine she takes 5HTP. They can interact with prescription drugs like SSRI's and Benzos though in unpredictable ways so I recommend avoiding the straight aminos to anyone on a prescription.

    Something that can work easily though without straight aminos is just having a protein shake before bed. You get a wide variety of aminos that your body can easily digest and use as needed. My favorite is Muscle Milk brand because it takes a long time for the casseine to totally break down so you have quicker aminos from the whey and a little slower from casseine. Although I realize there is controversy around protein drinks - for me, I can't get by without them. I just don't break down amino acids from my food. ((And actually the label on most protein drinks are cleaner and more nutritious then those on baby formula!! -- but yeah my friends are health nuts and have kittens that I use protein drinks at all))

    Recently I stopped L-Tryptophan, I was too sluggish in the morning and sluggish is my middle name anyway, and I thought maybe I could improve my energy without taking it for sleep. I had no problems stopping it suddenly. I had zero withdrawal and zero consequences. Nothing happened. I did not fall asleep very quickly, but that's my typical. I don't know if it helped my energy level in the mornings not taking it, maybe like 5% improvement ?

    Waking up at 2am is a good time to read a book anyway and pet the cat.

    Anyway - that is all to say - it is not addictive. Been on several black box labelled drugs and I know a bit about that oh' nelly do I ever. But I've read scary stories about withdrawal for such benign drugs as Benedryl and Ibuprophen and maybe in a tiny sense there is, but if you got through actual real deal withdrawal then that is pretty laughable in comparison.

    If I have a serious bought of insomnia again or trouble with my mood will definitely take L-Tryptophan again. It did work very well for me.
     
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  8. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    Hi @Bansaw - msg and its many relatives keeps me awake until after 3:00 p.m. I've found I have to eliminate all obvious sources of msg like soy sauce, and also things like "natural flavors", citric acid, there's a ton of them. See this for a rather complete list: http://www.truthinlabeling.org/hiddensources.html

    Even if something says "no msg added", odds are it has one of the ingredients on that list. Almost all processed foods have them. I do okay if I eat something with msg, etc. at lunch, but if I eat it at dinner, I'm in big trouble, no sleep till after 3:00 or 3:30.

    But I've still wrestled with insomnia apart from the issue of msg. I have tried a ton of things with varying success - here's some of them

    Valerian root - didn't do much (but it might help you)

    5-htp - helped quite a bit many years ago, and still take 150 mg. before bed

    niacin - very helpful taken before bed and middle of the night - but I don't take it during the day as it makes me tired then. My sister (who does not have ME/CFSt) likes this a lot for sleep too

    l-theanine - I take 300 mg. before bed and more in the middle of the night.

    magnesium - I just learned recently that low magnesium is associated with middle of the night insomnia, my worst time and I've recently increased my magnesium intake to 400 mg. before bed and 400 more middle of the night. I've also cut back on my calcium. Hair analysis showed that my calcium/magnesium ratio was very heavily skewed in favor of calcium. And I have - finally - started sleeping better.

    melatonin - 3 mg. sublingual before bed, 1.5 mg. more middle of the night

    inositol - 1000 mg before bed, 1000 more middle of the night

    glycine - 3000 mg before bed, 2000 more middle of the night. When I first took glycine, it caused a huge detox reaction - I learned I had to go very slowly with it (maybe 500 mg to start), but it paid off. It does help with sleep plus it helped get my detox pathways working properly

    Seriphos for high cortisol - an Adrenal Stress Index Test showed I had high cortisol middle of the night many years ago and nothing would touch that insomnia until I got my nighttime cortisol levels lowered. Seriphos was very effective for this. I found it worked best when taken in the morning (taken at night it caused even more insomnia) and I found a good dose through experimentation. Back then I needed a quite high dose - 800 mg. but I am not recommending that dose - always start low and go slow.

    taurine - this helped me a couple of times with insomnia, but after that it made it worse.

    B6 - helps some people with insomnia, but makes it worse for me. However I have a high need for B6, which helps the body produce taurine, so I take P-5-P with breakfast and lunch. Check labels - many sleep combos have B6 and/or taurine added.

    Taurine is supposed to help with msg sensitivity and I have recently increased my B6, which might increase my taurine, so sometime when I'm feeling lucky (or able to go without sleep for some reason), I'm going to do an experiment and see if my msg sensitivity has decreased at all.

    A friend of mine swears by 500 mg. tryptophan and 50 mg. B6 before bed but I can't take the B6 at night.

    We're all different - good luck!
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2018
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  9. Shoshana

    Shoshana Northern USA

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    Not to repeat any of the additional good ideas/possible suggestions, already given,

    I will comment on what you said, that you might try Valerian. That does help many people, and might well be worth trying it.
    Keep in mind that since it is a calmer, if you take more of it than your body wants, then you should be on lookout for it to maybe cause depression.

    But it is available in tablets OR in tea, and I would just try small doses, and watch for any sign you need to keep it low or not.
    It helped me sometimes, in years past, but I did have to limit my doses and frequency.
     
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  10. PatJ

    PatJ Forum Support Assistant

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    @Mary is that middle of the night dose a typo?
     
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  11. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    Yes! :jaw-drop: Should be 1.5 mg ... thanks for catching!

    just fixed it
     
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  12. Shoshana

    Shoshana Northern USA

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    :lol: That mistake gave me a big laugh. :D

    AFTER Pat pointed it out. :eek::p

    I never noticed it originally!
    :thumbdown::rofl::D
     
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  13. GreenMachineX

    GreenMachineX

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    Dealing with insomnia now as well. Well, I’ve always had it, but treated it well for several years. For some reason, the changes in my protocol screwed it up and I can’t get back to baseline.

    I have some 500mg tryptophan caps that I haven’t tried yet. Hesitant to because of all the recent adverse reactions I’ve had to new things (and messing with my methylation has caused me to have adverse reactions to old “safe” things!).

    3mg time release melatonin put me to sleep, but I woke up a few hours later with horrible vertigo on the way to the bathroom and actually fell on the floor. Never again.
     
  14. Wishful

    Wishful Senior Member

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    I'm imagining myself waking up (groggily) at 2am and petting the cat...and gradually remembering that I don't have a cat. :)

    I do have cougars and lynxes, but they stay outside. I wish I could trust them with tummy rubs.


    When I do wake up in the middle of the night, and know I'm not going to drift back to sleep, then yes, reading for a while makes it possible to go back to sleep again afterwards, but it still screws up my day.
     
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  15. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

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    I've been reading about magnesium and found that B6 is necessary for proper magnesium utilization and absorption. I already knew I had a need for a lot of B6 but think I need even more. I also just read that boron can also help with magnesium.

    After 1-1/2 years of nightmare sleep (after tapering off of 1 mg. lorazepam in the middle of the night for sleep, for 10 years (!) - way too long), I am starting to sleep again. It feels too good to be true, it's been 8 days now, so one night at a time for me ...

    Also I saw a homeopath who gave me a remedy for pineal, pituitary and hypothalamus, and I think that is helping too -

    One more thing - hair analysis showed a very high calcium to magnesium ratio and am temporarily stopping my calcium supplement so that might be helping too. High calcium can impede magnesium absorption.

    Middle of the night insomnia was my worst time and that apparently is related to low magnesium.
     
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  16. Runner5

    Runner5 Senior Member

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    I love big cats! We have a scattered few cougars where I live and small brown bear but the only thing to worry about on the trail are elk stomping on a person when they spook. If I keep my nose open I can usually smell them snoozing in the woods before I see them and know to watch out.

    Do you take a rifle out with you? Your wild country @Wishful makes mine look like the city. ;-P
     
  17. Carl

    Carl Senior Member

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    Valerian does not suit all people, it is a warming herb. Other cooling herbs can be better and more suitable for some people.

    Glycine the more taken the greater the effect. I take it because it is essential for collagen production and useful for the circulatory system and healing -> collagen. It is also needed for Glutathione production so can have multiple effects. I would take a lot more of it but have had to restrict it because it tends to make me sleep in anything but small doses ie 1-1.5ml.

    Take some Glycine and magnesium before bed and see how you get on. I would not spend much on Valerian until you are certain that it works for you. Maybe passionflower or chamomile.
     
  18. dreamydays

    dreamydays

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    I have recently found taking the SARM YK-11 during the day helps my sleep consistantly. Its molecular structure is similar to testosterone. I only take it the day after a bad night in order to sleep better the next. Watch some youtube videos about it as its a bodybuilding supplement.
     
  19. Wishful

    Wishful Senior Member

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    No, I don't take a rifle or any other firearm out on my walks. I've had close encounters with various big predators, but we got along peacefully. I do carry a walking stick just in case I need a communications aid, but I don't feel nervous out in the woods. I haven't encountered elk here, though they are around. I do encounter moose frequently enough (had three encounters last time I snowblowed the driveway).

    I do like my four-legged neighbours, and they don't trigger PEM! :)
     
  20. Bansaw

    Bansaw Senior Member

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    Thanks all. For a week now I am sleeping much better.
    Here's what I opted for:
    * Sleepytime tea 1hr before bed with
    * Valerian root / skullcap herbal supp in capsules
    * turn off computer 1hr before bed, sit in low light room
     
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