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  #1   ^
Old Fri, Jul-03-15, 10:29
mardatha mardatha is offline
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Posts: 159
 
Plan: CAD
Stats: 148/144/120 Female 5ft
BF:
Progress: 14%
Location: SCOTLAND
Question ME/CFS and poor sleep

Does anybody know anything about Serotonin supplements? Do they help you sleep and are they available over the counter?
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  #2   ^
Old Mon, Jul-06-15, 13:20
WereBear's Avatar
WereBear WereBear is offline
Posts: 10,483
 
Plan: Epi-Paleo/IF
Stats: 220/161/150 Female 67
BF:
Progress: 84%
Location: USA
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The best supplements I've taken for sleep have been anti-inflammatories like combos of White Willow Bark & Devil's Claw, and now I'm on high dose Niacin.

This is in addition to blocking blue light at sunset and sleeping with a sleeping mask. I've run across no supplement strategies that help sleep long-term. You have to address the underlying issues.
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  #3   ^
Old Tue, Jul-07-15, 01:04
mardatha mardatha is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 159
 
Plan: CAD
Stats: 148/144/120 Female 5ft
BF:
Progress: 14%
Location: SCOTLAND
Talking

Well I'm not sure what the underlying issues are really lol - just that since I hit menopause combined with ME, I'm always tired, but rarely sleepy
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  #4   ^
Old Tue, Jul-07-15, 01:56
SilverEm SilverEm is offline
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Posts: 1,018
 
Plan: VLC Pastoral
Stats: 137/136/136 Female 67"
BF:
Progress: 100%
Location: Maintenance since 2001
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Mardatha, have you looked at Dr. Myhill's protocols? She is in the UK, and specializes in helping people who have ME/CFS.

I take supplements and do various kinds of exercises, stretches, body work, energy sorts of things which help me. I have found some supplements have helped me a great deal, for example: magnesium, taurine, and inositol. Have you got Dr. Atkins' book, VitaNutrient Solutions? There are some good basic supplement protocols in it. I found it a good starting reference, even though there has been new research since his book came out.

Also, the usual abstinence from phone, tv, computer use, for a couple of hours before going to sleep. Care for atmosphere, for example, I keep my sleeping room for sleeping. I don't do other things in that room, so that it has a calm atmosphere.

I do restorative yoga several times throughout the day, and really notice how that helps.

Something else which has helped me, is to eat most of my food early in the day, and only eat lightly late in the day. I have meat/fish at the first meals, and have egg yolks and butter (or cream cheese) for the last meal. Perhaps some gelatin and yoghurt, too. I don't eat right before going to bed.

No caffeine after lunch. No artificial sweeteners.

Avoiding preservatives/additives/fillers, eating only pastured/grass-fed beef, and wild fish, that sort of thing. Using butter and cream from cows which are pastured/grass-fed. The best eggs I can manage. Grow my own herbs and a few greens/vegs, to avoid what is put in the soil and sprayed on the plants for commercial vegs/herbs sale.

For me, it is caring for each of the components of life. Best quality food, well-planned meals and movement/exercise, and rest. Balancing exertion and rest. Continually weeding out what is unnecessary.

Those are some examples of aspects of putting the picture together, so that there is a foundation of restfulness undergirding the whole. Sometimes, it works very well.

Peri-menopause was rough for me, and forced me to learn how to take much better care of myself. Menopause is much calmer for me.

I wish you success and really good rest.
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  #5   ^
Old Tue, Jul-07-15, 06:31
WereBear's Avatar
WereBear WereBear is offline
Posts: 10,483
 
Plan: Epi-Paleo/IF
Stats: 220/161/150 Female 67
BF:
Progress: 84%
Location: USA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mardatha
Well I'm not sure what the underlying issues are really lol - just that since I hit menopause combined with ME, I'm always tired, but rarely sleepy


I'm still digging out from my own menopause; it really messed me up. Taking pregnenolone has done wonders, or you could explore bio-identical hormone therapy.

I can't recommend regular HRT. Made me worse.
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  #6   ^
Old Tue, Jul-07-15, 09:33
mardatha mardatha is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 159
 
Plan: CAD
Stats: 148/144/120 Female 5ft
BF:
Progress: 14%
Location: SCOTLAND
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Ah thanks Silver. I do a lot of the things you suggest, meditation helps a wee bit, but haven't got the book. The only supplements I take are magnesium and vitamins plus St John Wort.
Dr Myhill is very expensive and I refuse to pay that kind of money.
Werebear, I was totally fine on HRT, it's since I came off it that I've had probs. I was on HRT for 11 years, I'm 65 now.
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  #7   ^
Old Tue, Jul-07-15, 10:25
WereBear's Avatar
WereBear WereBear is offline
Posts: 10,483
 
Plan: Epi-Paleo/IF
Stats: 220/161/150 Female 67
BF:
Progress: 84%
Location: USA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mardatha
Werebear, I was totally fine on HRT, it's since I came off it that I've had probs. I was on HRT for 11 years, I'm 65 now.


Pregnenolone is a hormone precursor. As we age our bodies make less, and this can contribute to hormone dysfunction. I've gotten great results!
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  #8   ^
Old Fri, Jul-10-15, 02:17
SilverEm SilverEm is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 1,018
 
Plan: VLC Pastoral
Stats: 137/136/136 Female 67"
BF:
Progress: 100%
Location: Maintenance since 2001
Default

Hi, Mardatha. I was just thinking of checking the things on her website. The parts I've read confirmed many things I had already chosen for myself, and she had some interesting links to research.

I experiment a good bit with supplements, but I don't know anything about supplementing with serotonin.

Doing senior yoga and Callanetics, modified to my parameters, and eating homemade yoghurt help me very much. Dr. Emily Deans posted a few years ago, at her blog, Evolutionary Psychiatry, that yoga and yoghurt increase GABA, which was a bit of reassurance that I had already been on a good track with my choices.

I wish you success in solving the puzzles.
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  #9   ^
Old Fri, Jul-10-15, 05:07
mardatha mardatha is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 159
 
Plan: CAD
Stats: 148/144/120 Female 5ft
BF:
Progress: 14%
Location: SCOTLAND
Default

It's very much an individual thing and we all need to research and experiment yes One day so many people will have ME (and lose time off work) that they will be forced to put money into research on it.
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  #10   ^
Old Fri, Jul-10-15, 08:10
bluesinger's Avatar
bluesinger bluesinger is offline
Posts: 3,537
 
Plan: LCHF
Stats: 170/139/130 Female 62 inches
BF:25%
Progress: 78%
Location: Nevada Desert, USA
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I don't have any medical conditions, so I can't address your personal ones and sleep. I have only old age. I'm post menopausal.

Personally, I do take HRT (estradiol 1mg daily) so I don't have hot flashes. As for sleep, I retrained my brain to stop thinking once I go to bed. I have a favorite instrumental song which I replace thoughts with until it puts me to sleep. In other words, I play music in my head so I won't think.

In the old days before I retrained myself, I tried taking melatonin and hated the way I felt the next day. I had better luck with the night-time pain reliever pills (all brands are blue in color).
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  #11   ^
Old Fri, Jul-10-15, 08:37
WereBear's Avatar
WereBear WereBear is offline
Posts: 10,483
 
Plan: Epi-Paleo/IF
Stats: 220/161/150 Female 67
BF:
Progress: 84%
Location: USA
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by bluesinger
I had better luck with the night-time pain reliever pills (all brands are blue in color).


A lot of people do. Because they are specifically targeted to decrease inflammation. Which is the enemy of sleep.
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  #12   ^
Old Fri, Jul-10-15, 14:05
SilverEm SilverEm is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 1,018
 
Plan: VLC Pastoral
Stats: 137/136/136 Female 67"
BF:
Progress: 100%
Location: Maintenance since 2001
Default

Mardatha, I don't know if the folks at Phoenix Rising might know of something, but it could be worth reading there, or even asking.... There are articles, and a forum for people with ME/CFS.

Here is the link.

Am sending you good thoughts.
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  #13   ^
Old Sun, Jul-19-15, 21:40
Nicekitty's Avatar
Nicekitty Nicekitty is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 464
 
Plan: Banting
Stats: 150/132/132 Female 5'7"
BF:
Progress: 100%
Location: PNW
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WereBear
A lot of people do. Because they are specifically targeted to decrease inflammation. Which is the enemy of sleep.


I assume both of you are talking about ibuprofen or similar NSAIDS? I often took ibuprofen as a sleep aid, until I realized it was both very hard on the liver, and keeping my chronic overuse-type injuries from healing. As soon as I quit taking it for a while, my chronic pains went away. Hoping there is no long-term liver damage. I never had any idea why that would work, but you've given me something to chew on.

The best way to increase serotonin is an SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) such as Prozac. I DO NOT recommend it! I've been on a serotonin-norepinenphrine reuptake inhibitor for 34 years (amitryptiline). Once again I am trying very hard to wean off of it, as there are some icky side affects such as dry mouth, weight gain and rapid heart beat. Serotonin itself probably wouldn't survive the digestive tract, and wouldn't pass the blood/brain barrier to get where you need it.

In general, supplements have not proven helpful for sleep improvement (in the long run) for most people. Sleep hygiene and general health care is a better way to attack it. I've had really good results with bio-identical hormones (post-menopausal), but that may not be an option for some people.
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  #14   ^
Old Mon, Jul-20-15, 02:22
mardatha mardatha is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 159
 
Plan: CAD
Stats: 148/144/120 Female 5ft
BF:
Progress: 14%
Location: SCOTLAND
Talking

Thanks SilverEm will take a look at that.
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  #15   ^
Old Mon, Jul-20-15, 09:54
WereBear's Avatar
WereBear WereBear is offline
Posts: 10,483
 
Plan: Epi-Paleo/IF
Stats: 220/161/150 Female 67
BF:
Progress: 84%
Location: USA
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicekitty
I assume both of you are talking about ibuprofen or similar NSAIDS? I often took ibuprofen as a sleep aid, until I realized it was both very hard on the liver, and keeping my chronic overuse-type injuries from healing.


That's certainly the most common "off label" use. I've lost track of the numbers of people who take them routinely as a sleeping aid. The reason it works is because they reduce inflammation.

I've used anti-inflammatory herbs like White Willow Bark and Devil's Claw to help sleep, and now take niacin with great results. Of course, I'm trying to fix my chronic inflammation issue, but sleep is part of that.
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