3 Reasons Why You Can't Sleep
Sleep issues weren’t a thing 200 years ago. Humans used to sleep an average of 8 ½ hours a night; now we average 7 ½ hours.
This isn’t surprising considering how much has changed in the past 150 years. There are 3 reasons why we have a hard time sleeping today.
I just watched News of the World with Tom Hanks. It’s set right after the Civil War in Texas in the 1800s. It was a great movie but what struck me the most was how they were living. He drove a wagon pulled by a horse. There was no electricity. The towns were muddy and dusty. This was less than 200 years ago! So much has changed so quickly.
Thomas Edison invented the light bulb in the late 1800’s. Until then, people were using fire and oil lamps to be awake after dark!
The Industrial Revolution 200 years ago focused on productivity and efficiency and it’s when the 8 hour work day was invented. Because of this, sleep was seen as a waste of time.
Now we drive cars across the country and fly on planes all over the world, things we weren’t able to do even 100 years ago. The amazing ability to fly across time zones faster than our bodies can adjust leads to even more sleep deprivation, jet lag and stress on our bodies.
It’s only in the past few decades that newer technology like computers, tablets and smartphones enable us to be awake and keep us wired all hours of the night.
Our lives are go-go-go. Most of us wake up to an alarm clock and hit the ground running, getting ready for work and getting the kids out the door for school. Then we work, eat lunch at our desks and push through tiredness with lattes and pastries. Finally we get home, make dinner, do the dishes and get ready for the next day. We finally fall into bed exhausted and then wonder why we can’t sleep.
When you’re busy all day, you have elevated cortisol all day. When your cortisol is high all day, you’re much more likely to have cortisol in your body at bedtime and during the night. Cortisol suppresses melatonin, your sleepy hormone, and keeps you awake.
Managing your stress during the day is critical to sleeping well at night. Taking recovery breaks from work throughout the day, doing stress-lowering activities like yoga and meditation and taking time to wind down at night will help naturally lower your cortisol levels so you can rest peacefully.
Financial worries, being an unhappy relationship, and not liking your job also cause constant stress. That’s why I help you address all of these things that are contributing to your insomnia.
There can be things going on in your body that cause stress, too. A pathogen in your gut, liver detox issues, food sensitivities, mineral imbalances, etc. are hidden but they stress your body and cause it to constantly release cortisol day and night.
Functional lab testing is the only way to find out everything going on in your body that is causing hidden stress and keeping you awake at night.
Cortisol is an anti-inflammatory hormone. So if you have inflammation at night, your body will release cortisol then and keep you from sleeping.
Inflammation comes from 3 places:
Common inflammatory foods are gluten, dairy, sugar, alcohol, and refined oils (grapeseed, canola, sunflower).
Eating foods you’re sensitive to causes inflammation, too. Even healthy foods like salmon and broccoli can be inflammatory if your body doesn’t like them.
Eating an unbalanced diet for your metabolism can also cause inflammation.
I have all my clients take a food sensitivity test and avoid inflammatory foods for 90 days. I also help them find their perfect diet based on their metabolism and individual body. This helps lower their inflammation so their cortisol lowers and they can sleep better.
Your liver has to deal with all the toxins in your body. If your liver gets overburdened, those toxins keep circulating throughout your body causing lots of inflammation.
You can be exposed to over 2 million toxins a day from:
Personal care products
Pesticides and herbicides in food
Toxins in the air
BPA in plastics
You can minimize the amount of toxins your liver has to handle by using natural personal care products and cleaning supplies, buying organic food, and drinking filtered water.
If this seems overwhelming to you, don’t worry. I help my clients make simple changes one step at a time so it's easy.
A parasite like giardia, bacteria like H. pylori, and yeast such as candida excrete a lot of toxins which causes a lot of inflammation. And because these creatures are most active at night, they make your body release cortisol and wake you up, especially around 3 or 4am.
I run a GI Map for all my clients to find out what’s living in their gut. If you have trouble sleeping, your gut isn’t healthy. Testing is the only way to find out exactly what’s going on so I know what to fix.
I find everything that’s keeping you awake at night, from screens to pathogens in your gut to anxiety about sleep. Book a Sleep Breakthrough call with me to learn how I can help find what’s causing your insomnia so you get the sleep you need.