Reduce Cortisol Levels for Insomnia
Molly (San Francisco) on 03/04/2019: I had terrible insomnia for 6 years following the birth of my first child. I was 37 when it started. I took several different sleep drugs during that time: Lorazipam, Trazadone, Benedryl. They made me depressed, so I was also taking a morning antidepressant. I did not like how flat and foggy I felt, and I worried that my sleep quality was not natural. I finally went to a naturopathic doctor who tested my cortisol levels and found that that hormone was not cycling properly for me. I took a natural supplement to suppress cortisol at 9:00 pm every night for about a month. I also improved my diet (no gluten, no milk and no sugar). Within a few months, I was off all drugs and sleeping great. Now I only take it if I stay up too late and feel that a second wind is keeping me awake. I have started waking around 4 in the morning lately, and I've found that a tablespoon of MCT oil helps me get back to sleep quickly. I've also started having a healthy carb and fat snack before bed (usually sweet potato with butter and salt and a little Brain Octane Oil). When my kids have insomnia or restless legs, they get magnesium - either lotion or drink. I used to put lavender essential oil on their pillows as well, when they were having trouble sleeping. Sleep hygiene is great too, but when my cortisol was off, no amount of sleep hygiene could get me a full night of sleep. Also, if I start eating poorly (too much gluten and/or sugar), it can bring some sleep issues back for awhile. And if I don't eat 2 healthy meals during the day, that can also cause my sleep to suffer. I would recommend seeing a naturopath for help in discovering the underlying cause of your sleeplessness, if possible. I am so thankful that I finally did!