When I first began the keto life back in the summer of 2014, my main goal was to reduce the amount of migraine attacks I was receiving and it never occurred to me that lack of sleep was a trigger of mine. In the days preceding my start, I’d read over and over again about the importance of getting to bed before 9pm. Why? Apparently the circadian rhythm can become disrupted and raise our cortisol levels. There’s a science to this that is far beyond my current understanding, however I’m leaving the details to those like Dr. Stephen Phinney & keto coach Stephanie Persons.
For those reading that don’t already know, I had my 5th (and last) child this summer and as such this has effected my sleep at night. While I’m able to get to bed around 8:30pm, I fall asleep somewhere around 9:30pm and wake up to feed our child around 2am and then again around 5am. Somehow I’m still able to get rather good sleep, with dreams, most of the time and my ketones stay between 2.3 – 2.8 for my morning fast numbers.
Last night was slightly different as my sleep was continuously interrupted by both noises and yes, stress. We humans ALL suffer from some amount of stress and I’d probably admit that much of my stressfulness comes from first world problems, however, it’s still affecting my sleep. Which in turn would eventually affect my ketones if I don’t destress. My cortisol levels aren’t high enough to mess with my ketones or glucose numbers, so right now I’m not going to stress out about stressing out. I’m just going to make sure that I get to bed in a timely manner.
Every keto-er is trying out this way of eating for one reason or another, be it to attempt to heal a disorder, ailment or burn fat, our stresses are going to eventually affect our ketones. How do we deal or lower stress to avoid it affecting our ketones when we can’t change the world going on around us? SLEEP. There are some situations that I cannot control and although I shouldn’t stress out, I am still going to. That’s me. Mrs. Anxiety. What else will relax me during those seasons of meh? Sleep. This keto-er chooses to not go to bed at 1AM after a night of binge watching Desperate Housewives or Downton Abbey again. But instead I’ll be shutting off my tv/phone/computer (all blue light) around 8pm and laying my head to pillow at 9pm.
It sounds like a pain, but think of it like a habit… that your brain and body will thank you for.